Over mijn blog

This Blog contains personal opinions of Jacco Hoekstra and does therefore not reflect the position of the TU Delft in general. Author can also be followed in Twitter: @ProfHoekstra for interesting links a.o. related to science & engineering




De meningen ge-uit door medewerkers en studenten van de TU Delft en de commentaren die zijn gegeven reflecteren niet perse de mening(en) van de TU Delft. De TU Delft is dan ook niet verantwoordelijk voor de inhoud van hetgeen op de TU Delft weblogs zichtbaar is. Wel vindt de TU Delft het belangrijk - en ook waarde toevoegend - dat medewerkers en studenten op deze, door de TU Delft gefaciliteerde, omgeving hun mening kunnen geven.

Excellent MSc education? Large demand from industry? Then shrink.

Our education Aerospace
Engineering is forced to reject more and more students as a result of the
reduction of government funding, despite the fact that industry demands more
people with an AE MSc degree.

After the numerus clausus for the
BSc, now in our master we have to take similar measures: two out of our five
MSc tracks have been capped. This means our students cannot always specialize
on the topic of their choice. The chance of succeeding is much larger,
especially with a difficult study like aerospace engineering, when you’re
motivated, so I understand the disappointment of the students. 

Unfortunately we do not have a
choice. The financial situation of the faculty does not allow hiring a
sufficient number of scientific staff to facilitate more students. If we would
not regulate the influx of the master tracks, then we would not be able to guarantee
the high quality, which would be unacceptable for us. We are known as the best
aerospace education of the western world and we want to safeguard that
reputation. The limited influx is a form of selection: only the ones who have
shown in the bachelor to have the best qualifications for succeeding in a
specific topic of a master track will be admitted in that track.

In the MSc, it currently only
affects a small number of students. A few dozen of students will not be able to
do the track of their choice. In the BSc we are talking about different
numbers: of the 600 freshmen, which we expect to register next year, almost 200
will have to be rejected.

I regard this as very strange in
a time where everybody claims that excellence and societal relevance is
rewarded. Our education has received the highest grades of all Dutch MSc
programs. And the industry demand for our AE MSc graduates is growing. There
are more potential graduates among the high school students whom we now could
have educated. Reducing these numbers will save the government costs in the
short-term but is an enormous loss for the Dutch economy in the medium- and
long-term. This type of short-sighted policies do not just lead to disappointed
students but also to an unnecessary large damage to the economy.

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