New-style introduction day for HCM/ZoMa & HEPL/HE master's degree students

It's Friday morning, 1 September, and around 250 (160 HCM/ZoMa & 90 HEPL) students are eagerly waiting to take part in the introduction day. In one lecture hall, they are welcomed by Jan-Willem Weenink (Programme Director HCM/ZoMa). In the adjacent lecture hall, Vivian Reckers-Droog (Programme Director HEPL/HE) addresses the new students. 

After some introductory questions to break the ice, the students learned which of them live in Rotterdam, who has done our BMG bachelor’s degree, and who has a pet. Now everyone knows who they can go to for a chat at lunch or during the drinks’ reception. 

Students are asked why they chose this study programme, about their career goals and ambitions, and what track or path they plan to follow. Over 45 minutes, the students are given lots of information about the study programme and practical matters like CANVAS, and when they can call on the study advisors. After this plenary session, the students divide up to do two newly developed workshops.  

Workshop: Mastering Your Choices: Shape your future 

In different classrooms in the new Langeveld building, alumni lead the Shape Your Future workshop for groups of around 12 students. The workshop itself was developed by ESHPM alumna Demi Jongejan. I follow the workshop given by Fleur Adriaanse. She graduated from ESHPM (HCM) in 2021, and now works from Erasmus MC as Project Manager at IP & ABR Zorgnetwerk Zuidwest Nederland. She tells the new students that money is not everything, using the following quote: 

“A good salary motivates you once a month, but a good work culture motivates you every single day.”

Fleur explains that it doesn't matter if you don't yet know your goals. When she started on her master's degree, she didn't know either. This workshop is primarily intended to get students to regularly think about their goals. Trigger yourself to ask the right questions and don't limit how many questions you ask. A valuable lesson, because there are so many things for new students to assimilate to.  

Fleur: "Four years ago, I started my master's degree, so it's really interesting and valuable to be giving a workshop as an alumnus and share my experiences with the (international) students who, in the coming year, will be choosing what direction they want to take after their studies." 

Using the J. Galavazi model, Demi explains in a video how you can take different routes to achieve your goals. The students discuss their thoughts on this. While one student already feels an affinity for a consultancy role, another has no idea at all - she just goes with the flow.  

At the end of the workshop, the new students check out the open area on the 7th floor of the Bayle building (the home base of ESHPM), where they can collect a packed lunch. Having started to rain outside, many students stick around and mingle. Then the afternoon programme starts for the HCM/ZoMa students featuring the game: Serious game: a new hospital on Katendrecht. The HEPL/HE students do the introductory programme in reverse, joining the alumni session after lunch. 

Serious game: Katendrecht MC 

Over the past year, the Programme Directors got together with the ESC, student assistants and Erasmus X to develop a serious game in which students face challenges in the development of a new hospital "Katendrecht MC".  

Earlier this week, the lecturers involved attended a training session by Pablo Ortiz de Zaldumbide, Innovation Designer at Erasmus X. “After 4 months, we got to launch a new serious game called ‘Katendrecht MC’. We were aiming to build a collaborative game, relevant to ESHPM, where students step into the shoes of a hospital manager, get together in groups, make decisions with no perfect outcomes, and assess the consequences of every decision they make. The launch of Katendrecht MC was facilitated by ESHPM educators for the enjoyment of the new ESHPM students who got to play together, discuss, share and assess all the options and lessons the game offers about healthcare management. On behalf of ErasmusX, we are very grateful to have been part of this collaboration. I am particularly grateful to the ESHPM educators who facilitated the game sessions, and for getting the chance to witness the enjoyment and value the game brings to this new generation of ESHPM students. Our next step is to reframe this narrative complex problem-solving game in other courses, programmes or faculties for the enjoyment and education of more students at EUR.” 

I join the group of (Master) Teacher of the Year Sander van Haperen. After an introductory round in which the students describe their ambitions, ranging from wanting to set up their own clinic, a role on the financial side of healthcare institutions, to a role relating to public health in the field of infectious diseases, he explains that it is about working together as a team and later reflecting on the process. How do you deal with the different stakeholders and what do you need to consider? There is no winner, no best result.  

Using the app, the students play the game in small groups of 3 to 4 people. If they have doubts, the lecturer exerts slight pressure to take a decision. Different groups, different discussions but with almost the same results. How come? They set the same priorities, not just for the short term but also for the long term. The focus here was mainly on patient care. Another group also really discovered the key fact that you can't please everyone. Sander explains that in terms of HCM, we look at the situation from these different angles. During the study, you are given tools to deal with that. 

Martijn Felder: "It is always a pleasure to be part of the introduction day. It is a great opportunity to talk to students about their educational and professional backgrounds and to learn about their expectations of our educational programs. What stood out for me this year was the Serious Game. It provided students with a taste of the theme’s that will addressed in different courses and moreover served as a great opportunity to get to know one another in a playful way. I also liked the fact that the drinks at the end of the day were organized at J7 (Bayle building). This allows us to make ESHPM a more tangible place for students." 

The introduction day is coming to an end, but not before drinks on J7 where the HCM/ZoMa and HEPL/HE students all meet up again, joined by the Eu-HEM students, whose introduction day is also today. The new SHARE board and various lecturers are also present. There's a nice atmosphere, although the vegan 'bitterballen' are not to everyone's taste. I talk briefly to the two programme directors and two students about today, and their choice of study programme. 

Aurora: "I didn't know exactly what to expect of today. It's nice to get to know my fellow students. During the game, everyone came up with different arguments, based on their own perspective and background. It was nice that the day gave clarity about what you can do with this master's degree. That was really highlighted today." 

Nora: "I've nearly completed my bachelor's degree in Medicine in Groningen. That's a very practical programme. You are trained to be a doctor. I feel that the Master HCM really complements that programme, teaching you how to tackle problems that arise in healthcare." 

Jan-Willem Weenink: "I really appreciated the involvement of alumni during the introduction day. It proved a great way for students to get acquainted with the challenges and opportunities of the programme, and how to tackle them. Seeing students and teachers from both HCM/ZoMa and HEPL/HE meeting on J7 for the end-of-day drinks was a perfect start to the new year!" 

Vivian Reckers-Droog: "I am delighted to see that our efforts to revamp the Introduction Day are resonating with students and faculty members at ESHPM. We wanted students to feel welcome at ESHPM, alumni to be involved, students to be inspired, and to be introduced to the complexity of solving issues in healthcare in a fun way. I think it was a great success, not least thanks to the efforts of the ESC!"

Assistant professor
Dr. Jan-Willem Weenink
Assistant professor

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