The central aim of the knowledge committee is to provide feedback on the educational program of the Erasmus Graduate School of Social Sciences and the Humanities (EGSH). This aim is fulfilled in two ways. First, the knowledge committee can be approached by the EGSH to review certain aspects of the educational program, for example the knowledge committee can be asked to provide feedback on a specific course. Second, the knowledge committee gathers feedback on the educational program of the EGSH from PhD-candidates in all departments represented by the EGSH. This is done once a year by providing all PhD-candidates with short questionnaires. The feedback that is provided by these PhD-candidates will eventually be presented to the Programme board of the EGSH. This makes it possible for the Programme Board to further develop the educational programme of the EGSH in a way that better fits the needs of its PhD students.
André Mamede Soares Braga
Mandeville building & Erasmus University College
Bayle building, J5-47
Mandeville building, T14-03
Brenda Rodriguez Cortes
ISS Building (The Hague), Office I3-15
Every PhD candidate working on his or her project knows that, most of the time, working on your PhD is not an easy task. It does not matter if you are just starting your PhD or if you are already finishing your PhD; each PhD-stage has its own challenges. Last academic year we asked PhD candidates at EUR what challenges they were confronted with. Their answers related to the very start of their PhD (getting to know the university, the department, the graduate school, knowing where to park your bike or car, or finding the right person to approach for certain questions); the first 1,5 year of their PhD (most PhDs never worked on a 4-year project before); and the quantity and quality of supervision. In this committee we address these challenges. Our aims are to:
(1) Provide new PhD candidates with a soft landing at EUR;
(2) Provide guidelines for structuring the first 1,5 years of the PhD trajectory;
(3) Gather best practices with regards to supervision.
At the start of their career in academia, many PhD students often feel a need to prove themselves. The pressure to publish, present at conferences, organize and teach courses may be overwhelming. Recently, a number of studies have shown that many PhD's (24,9% University Utrecht; 36,5% University Amsterdam) experience mental issues such as extreme stress and anxiety. The PhD Council has therefore decided that mental health should become one of their main concerns. We are supporting a proposal to improve the support that is available for PhD’s and are working together with other councils to organize discussions on the issue, providing contact information, courses and tools in dealing with work pressure.
The main objective of the social committee is to organize stimulating social, academic, cultural and/or sport activities to promote the socialization of PhDs from the departments ascribed to the EGSH. To reach this goal, the Social Committee will act in three ways. First, it will promote participation of the EGSH PhD Community in social events organized by its PhD Council and/or the University. We find particularly important to consider the different interests and preferences across our PhDs Schools before planning each event. Second, it will serve as support network to smoothen the communication with other social committees at the university such as EPAR, the Erasmus Magazine, and other Schools. Third, its members will verify, compile and secure approval for the budgets necessary to carry out each planned activity.