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Annemarie Meijer appointed as confidential advisor for PhD candidates

As of 1 January 1, 2024, Annemarie Meijer is the new confidential advisor for PhD candidates of the Faculty of Science. Meijer succeeds Jan Boersema, who served in the role for over six years. PhD candidates can turn to her for a confidential conversation about matters they may not want to discuss immediately with their supervisor. A role that suits Meijer well, according to two prominent colleagues.

Meijer is a professor at the Institute of Biology (IBL) and has extensive experience in supervising PhD candidates. This is a significant advantage, emphasises Jasper Knoester, Dean of the Faculty of Science. ‘Our PhD candidates are an important group for our research and education. They are in an exciting and uncertain phase of their careers. They are often under great pressure and come from very different cultures. Sometimes situations arise that are not easy to address or resolve within the group or the institute. It is important that there is a confidential advisor they can turn to. Annemarie has a lot of relevant experience, putting her in an excellent position to take on this role.’

Knoester is very grateful to Meijer’s predecessor for his dedication. ‘Annemarie is following in the footsteps of Professor Jan Boersema, who carried out the role of confidential advisor for PhD candidates with conviction and passion for over six years.’

‘The special position of PhD candidates asks for good support’

Esther van Opstal, HRM director of our university, also emphasises the special position of PhD candidates. ‘There are situations where you want to discuss things with someone before talking to your supervisor or HR; then it is important to know that the confidential advisor can help you.’

Van Opstal: ‘As a PhD candidate, you may sometimes feel dependent on those who guide you and also feel that the behaviour is not entirely fair; that’s why we are happy to have Annemarie as a confidential advisor. Based on her experience, she understands those specific situations, and it is more comfortable to brainstorm together.’

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