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The internship experience of Lisa (Spatial Engineering)

Lisa Doornbos did an internship at a mobility consultancy firm

Lisa Doornbos did the Bachelor's programme in Landscape Architecture at Wageningen University & Research and then opted for the Master's in Spatial Engineering at ITC. Since January 2023 she has been working in the Dutch city of Deventer in her first job, at the mobility consultancy agency where she also did her internship – Goudappel.

Why did you choose the Master’s in Spatial Engineering?

“Spatial Engineering students come from many different backgrounds and the connection to a Bachelor’s programme is not always obvious. In my case, after my Bachelor's, I mainly looked for more depth: how do you arrive at a certain design, which environmental factors are at play? For me, the Master’s was a useful addition rather than something that seamlessly connected to my Bachelor’s. For example, I learned more about GIS, and how to extract useful information from data to support your ideas on landscape design. My thesis, in a nutshell, was about mobility – cycling, to be exact – and participation using GIS tools.”

Lisa Doornbos, Spatial Engineering alumna

I really felt that I was doing relevant things

Lisa Doornbos, Spatial Engineering alumna

How did you find your place of internship?

“Based on the subject matter of my thesis, my thesis supervisor suggested I try Goudappel. I sent them an open application asking if there might be a subject that would suit me. Briefly afterwards they invited me for an interview in which they already came up with a whole list of possible topics. The options were highly varied, which is understandable because Goudappel covers a wide scope, with specialized teams in different areas. I did my internship with the team that deals with Mobility and Space.”

My view from the train when traveling to Deventer (Goudappel)

 What was the subject of your assignment?

“The person who later became my internship supervisor came up with the idea of doing a project about increasing heat stress in cities and, linked to this, the question of how to keep things as comfortable as possible for cyclists. The subject appealed to me and during the internship I discovered that it really suited me too. My studies had prepared me well for the things that were asked of me. What it came down to, mainly, was producing maps using GIS, combining sources by superimposing different layers of information. My work was geared towards answering several pertinent questions: where are the heat stress areas in the city, where do people cycle, where could problems arise and what could or should a municipality do to prevent them? I really felt that I was doing relevant things, all the more so since my work can also contribute to initiatives in other fields, such as heat-resistant design.”

Fietsnetwerk Hazard Deventer

How did you like your internship?

“I loved it, not in the least because of the space and freedom I was given. Next to my internship assignment, I was also allowed to participate in other ongoing projects. For example, I went to a residents' evening where people were given the opportunity to speak out about their living environment. That was a very interesting experience, as participation is an important subject to me. I’ve also been lucky that being physically present at the agency was possible again after the covid crisis. Being there gives gives you a sense of involvement that would lack if circumstances forced you to do a lot of stuff online. I really felt I belonged, and apparently the feeling was mutual. In the end I was graded 9 out of 10 for my internship.”

Lisa graduated with a 9 out of 10 for her internship

What did the experience bring you?

“I learned a lot about my own interests, abilities and preferences. It was also great to be taken along everywhere, as if I actually worked there and wasn't just an intern. In addition, I have been able to determine that working at a consultancy firm such as Goudappel really suits me. It’s nice and practical, not too academic, and you truly feel that what you’re doing gets followed up. In that sense, the internship also connected my Bachelor’s and Master’s with the professional field. I used to wonder what people actually end up doing after finishing studies like mine. The internship taught me that you can find your own way without necessarily having to do what has been thought out for you. The very fact that I have these different backgrounds enabled me to establish a distinct profile.”

Group photo of Lisa (right) and her fellow students

What will you be doing now that you are officially employed by Goudappel?

“On my business card it says Mobility and Spatial Planning Consultant, but for now I will first focus on finding my place within the organization and trying things out. I am given a lot of space to participate in different projects in different phases. In a way, it's like starting a new study all over again. I’m very excited!”

Want to learn more about the internship possibilities at ITC?

B. Jaarsma - Knol (Belinda)