Students train young professionals

Last Saturday, the roles were reversed: five WUR students provided a workshop for young professionals. The workshop was part of a three-day course to help organisations become more sustainable.
Didi de Vries

Domenico Dentoni and the five students that assisted during the workshop. From left to right: Dentoni, Enrique Garcia, Philomena Kafui Darku, Rheysa Permata Sari, Nicole Jansen, Stephanie Barbachan Osorio. © Stephanie Barbachan Osorio

Last Saturday, four master’s students from Food Quality Management and one from Urban Environmental Management educated young professionals during a workshop on system change. The students followed the course Strategic Change Management and Innovation during the fifth term last year. They successfully completed an assignment given by Domenico Dentoni, lecturer at Wageningen University and Research, upon which Dentoni invited them to help during last Saturday’s workshop.


Led by Dentoni, the students supervised a total of twenty teams of four to five people. Each team had to think up a case and chart which factors were involved. The groups then came up with interventions to solve the problem. ‘The subjects varied greatly. One group focused on childhood obesity, another on food waste, and yet another on youth migration’, explains Philomena Kafui Darku, one of the students involved.

The workshop was part of the three-day course Nudge Global Impact Challenge. During this course, young professionals are taught how to help organisations become more sustainable. Participants were between 23 and 33 years of age and came from around the globe.

According to Nicole Jansen, who was also among the participating students, the workshop was a great success. ‘I was very curious whether they would approach the assignment differently, as they have more work experience’, she tells. ‘But they didn’t. However, they did not get stuck in theoretical concepts as much as students, as they had more examples from everyday practice at their disposal.’

Rightful winner

At the end of the two-hour workshop, all attendees voted on the team that they thought had best elaborated on their idea. The winning team had proposed a solution to tackle the housing shortage for labourers in the Philippines: residential containers that accommodate three to four people per unit. According to Nicole Jansen, the team rightfully won. ‘There are so many factors that come into play and this group seemed to have considered every single one. It is very commendable that they did this in the short time given.’

The young professionals charting a case. ©Stephanie Barbachan Osorio

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