Written by Keren Hewett, TDM student 2020-2021

The Tourism Destination Management program is jam-packed full of various classes, activities and events.

One of these being the “Academic Speed Dating”. Now I don’t know about you, but when I first heard of this, I had to double take. Speed dating is not something that I want to connect with my teachers! Fear not, however, as it is much more productive and much less hassle than dating; no need to overthink an outfit, conversation topics, or spend an hour on the phone to your friend whilst getting ready!

In reality, it’s an event that offers a great opportunity to meet with eight  available thesis supervisors. In an intimate setting, students were able to talk with each supervisor about their research interests. This is only the second year it has taken place and it can be said that it was a great success. Not only was it helpful for the thesis research, it also allowed for students and teachers to meet, which has been difficult due to Covid. Putting names to faces added value to the study as it made it more personal.

Upon arrival, students sat in groups of three and waited for a teacher to fill the fourth chair. When the event started, each teacher had 4 minutes with every group. Within this time, the teacher was able to pitch themselves; how they will be able to add value to various theses, thanks to their personal/professional backgrounds. After the speed round, the students had the possibility to sit with a teacher that had “caught their eye”, for want of a better phrase. Here there was about 10-15 minutes where topics could be shared and advice given.

My experience:

In my opinion, this event was a great way to get to know more BUas lecturers, as well as gain clarity on my thesis topic. Having already had a topic in mind, I was able to approach the teachers about it and acquire different perspectives and advice that is very valuable in the development of my idea and consequential thesis.

Reviews from other students:

Heymell: “The thesis speed dating was very informative and incredibly interesting. Being able to freely discuss a wide variety of topics allowed for us to refine our ideas and follow up on questions with regards to our research. The advice we received was very handy and I expect that it helped many in furthering their potential. I look forward to working with my future thesis supervisor and am excited for future discussions.”

Voordes: “The speed dating event was a great opportunity to meet with potential thesis supervisors and get inspired with their ideas. The first round, they briefly introduced themselves and their interests. We got to speak with each of them for about 4 minutes. The second round we could choose whom we wanted to speak more with, to share our own ideas/interests with them. I went home overwhelmed, but with new inspiration and motivation!”

D, Hendriks: “I was looking forward to the speed dating, as despite all the corona measures, it would be the first face-to-face moment for the thesis. Different date setups were with chairs, where three students and one teacher could take place. Because of this setting, in my opinion, you got a good idea of how the person works and whether she/he fits your thesis topic. All in all, it was a valuable afternoon for me, and I was able to observe many different ideas from my fellow students. By brainstorming together in this way, it helped me to take the next step in my thesis process—a fun, active form of brainstorming.”


PSA, Covid-19 regulations:

Due to the virus, precautions were taken in alignment with the campus restrictions and regulations were adhered to. The event took place in the stunning chapel building in two shifts, allowing for the maximum of 30 attendants per time.