The theme of the conference in Zwolle was ‘communities’.
We can look back on a successful three-day conference from 7 to 9 June at our Zwolle campus. We had a good international representation, with some 350 visitors from higher and senior secondary vocational education (hbo/wo and mbo), including 50 from abroad.
The largest group of international guests was from the US and included 15 students.
The conference started on Wednesday 7 June with an attractive pre-conference programme. Etienne and Beverly Wenger-Trayer gave a case clinic, while colleagues from Evergreen State College (Washington State, USA) organized an instructive workshop on how they structure their multidisciplinary education.
There was a City-as-Text Walkabout, where participants in the immediate vicinity of the Campus and the city centre explored various ways of community formation in the neighbourhood.
After the official presentation of the brand new magazine The Hive - 10 years of Windesheim Honours College in Zwolle, the Netherlands, to Jan Brink, Zwolle’s Alderman of Education, the conference started on Thursday.
The keynote speeches by Etienne and Beverly Wenger-Trayer and Magriet Sitskoorn were well attended and received. So were over 50 workshops, round tables and panel meetings.
For participants there was a barbecue on a tour boat in the Zwolle canals on Thursday evening and for students a barbecue on the Talent Square, organized by students. Participants said there was a good atmosphere and they were pleased with the organization of the conference. Quite a few complimentary remarks were made about the delicious food, but most praise went to all students, who were very active and committed.
The Friday programme was made up of student contributions. They used poster presentations to give their views on how to strengthen communities, turning this into what proved to be definitely one of the highlights of the conference.
On this day, two awards were presented. The first award, for `Best Research Poster´, went to Michael Pashkevich of Loyola University in the US and Frederik Stapke of Windesheim Honours College.
The second award, for ´Most Innovative Project´ was presented to Anna Kotcharayan, Daniëlle Bakker, Oafa Boukhri, Stef Windt and Tom Kooiman, students from the New Towns Honours Programme and from Windesheim Flevoland.
Also on Friday, delegates from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and executive board members from some other educational organizations visited Windesheim to discuss the importance of the pilot function of honours education.