Successful ‘Kick-Start Your hbo Studies’ programme

Successful ‘Kick-Start Your hbo Studies’ programme

01/16/2023 - 16:57

Last August saw the first edition of the ‘Kick-Start Your hbo Studies’ workshop at the Hotel and Facility management programmes. This workshop aims to ease the transition from mbo to hbo. The workshop was positive and we can confirm there will be a next edition!
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In the week before the InterSib introduction event, 17 mbo graduates voluntarily attended the free three-day workshop. All mbo graduates had received an invitation in June, to which 50% actually signed up. This clearly demonstrated the need among this target group for a preparatory workshop to ease the transition to hbo.   


Why a programme especially for this target group? 

Drop-out among mbo graduates is too high. They often lack self-confidence, even though this group of students has often already gained valuable experience during their mbo education in hospitality. Just think of placements, writing self-reflections and a lot of practical experience.  


That is why Hotel and Facility Management lecturer Bert Paijmans and study coach Annemijn Claassen have composed a balanced programme, focusing on the courses that this target group often struggles with in their first year. The workshop incorporates introductory classes from courses such as English, Finance, Research & Design, and Management Development Programme (working on your self-image, believing in yourself, and trusting your strengths and experience).  


The programme 

The first two days of the workshop take place on campus. The focus of this first day is on introducing each other, the campus, the Horizon Building, the Hotel and Facility degree programmes, and the Finance and English courses. On the second day, the students zoom in on the qualities they already possess that will help them develop their profile during their first year of studies. On the third day, they enter the field, with specific attention for the Research & Design course. For this first edition, Hotel Nassau in Breda had provided a real-life case that the students worked out in one day.  

The Hotel Manager introduced his hotel and gave the assignment that the students would work on in groups that day. The Research & Design lecturer gave an introductory class in Research & Design and after lunch the hotel staff were interviewed for their case. At breakneck speed, students had to come up with solutions, prepare and actually present a presentation.  


Positive reactions from students   

Students were very positive about this initiative after this first edition. During the festive Introduction InterSib event they already noticed that they were more confident than the mbo students who had not participated.   

Study coach Annemijn Claassen: ‘I notice that my students are a lot more aware of the differences between mbo and hbo. They are no longer frightened by the different way of learning and the independence we ask of them.’ 


Positive reactions came not only from the students themselves. There were also positive reactions from education policymakers involved in easing the transition from mbo to hbo. As a result, tertiary sources of funding have been freed up for the next edition to tweak and improve this programme even more, based on the students’ experiences this academic year.   


‘And are there any benefits yet?’ 

The 17 students will be monitored this academic year for study success and their well-being. Study coach Annemijn Claassen: ‘I still have a good rapport with this group of former mbo students and speak to them regularly. The students in my own classes I see a bit more, of course, and they keep me informed about how their mbo counterparts are doing. From some students I get tips on topics they missed during the workshop. For example, even more insight into how one should actually learn. In addition, the students are all still in contact with each other a lot. The workshop seems to have forged a good mutual bond!’ 

We hope to have a clearer picture at the end of the academic year of what the impact of the workshop has been and whether they have indeed benefited greatly from the kick-start to their hbo studies.  


(Video is in Dutch)