International Business Administration student Svenja Johannsen was invited to present her Bachelor’s thesis at the upcoming VSNU Student Research Conference 2013. She is in the running to win the Student Research Award, worth €500 euros! In this article, Svenja tells us about the whole experience.
I combined writing my thesis with an internship at the Dutch Ministry of the Interior in The Hague. My research focussed on a model that helps you assess the maturity, or professionalism, of your purchasing function or department. It’s called the MSU+ model and especially targets the public sector. During my ten weeks of research, I conducted about nearly a dozen interviews with professionals and experts in the field of public purchasing. The goal was to identify the model’s weaknesses and, ultimately, to put forward suggestions for improving it.
I started on the Bachelor’s in International Business Administration Bachelor at the University of Twente in 2010, and I had a wonderful time. The first year provided a good introduction to all the relevant business fields. On that basis, I decided to focus on Supply Management, which later became the subject of my Bachelor’s thesis. In the second year, I did an internship with the strategic purchasing department of a big company, which gave me a lot of practical insight. I started my third year with a semester abroad in France, where I had the opportunity to travel a lot and experience many new things.
My teachers informed me about the Student Research Conference (SRC 2013), which gives awards to excellent Bachelor’s theses by students at universities in the Netherlands. I applied in July with a 3-page summary of my actual thesis, and was very happy to find out in September that my thesis had been selected. This means I get to present my thesis on a poster at a conference in Amsterdam in November. The audience gets to vote on the best poster presentation, which means I have a chance of winning a 500€ prize. I am really looking forward to presenting my thesis. It will be a great opportunity to see what other students did and also to practice my presentation skills.