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Choosing ATLAS (3/4) Kick-In and Kick-Off

An account of how the first years experienced their first few weeks on campus and as ATLAS students.

ATLAS people are fun and groceries expensiveLuc Weidgraaf, class of 2022

When new students arrive on campus, the first large event on their calendar is the Kick-In. 10 days of activities, parties, making friends and memories. Luc says that "the Kick-In allowed me to have tons of friends before the year even stated", and Otto agrees: 

It was great fun and helped me to integrate with my class quicker and more easily.Otto Hajenius, class of 2022

The intention of those two weeks is to introduce Students to the others of their year, the city and the endless opportunities and possibilities on the campus. 

It gave a good insight into the associations and activities at and around campus and student life.Jarmo Schoemaker, class of 2022

ATLAS specific events within these days include Day 0, an important first step to building your community by getting to know your peers, Faculty Kick-In, an off-campus, 3-day trip and the morning lecture, a tradition at this point but also an opportunity to be introduced to the more academic side with first details on PDP writing and the first semester.

Once the Kick-In draws to a close with the Kick-Out party, ATLAS has it’s Kick-Off, followed by a week to ‘set the stage’ and ‘shine the light’ on some of the key features of the programme. Luc and Aaron found that it gave them a good overview of the courses and projects they will be working on the rest of the year and forced them to get semi-serious, ready for academics.

One of these key features is the project work, prominent in each semester, with an introduction to project approaches and group dynamics. Another important introduction is to the Personal Development Plan or PDP for short (further details on this will follow in a later article).

The aim of the PDP is to plan your semester ahead, which can be strange to start with as Luc found out, but with everyone helping each other, it tends to work quite well. As Jarmo so perfectly summarised “The PDP helps provide purpose for your learning. At ATLAS it’s all about you, the PDP supports that”.

When asked about the main lesson learnt during that first week one seemed to be recurring. In fact, it’s necessity only grows over the next three years, and the skills learnt because of it will prove vital for many years to come. That lesson: Planning 

As with so many things, you learn from experience. The one plan you can make now though, apply for ATLAS and learn proper planning with your classmates by your side next year as the new ATLAS cohort.

A special thanks to Aaron van Santen, Jarmo Schoemaker, Luc Weidgraaf and Otto Hajenius.

University College Twente offers a unique bachelor’s programme, Technology, Liberal, Arts and Sciences, to top students. Visit the University College Twente website for more information about the college and Technology, Liberal, Arts and Sciences website for more information about the bachelor program. Or visit us during the open day, a student-for-a-day or an insight-day.

Grace Wachter
Writer, class of 2021
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