Name: Vincent Lussenburg
Prior education: Bachelor's degree in Technical Computer Science (Open Universiteit Nederland)
Current position: Software engineer at Rabobank, via Ordina secondment agency
'I entered the Master’s programme through a special arrangement offered by my current employer Ordina. When you sign a contract here, you get the option of taking a Master’s programme, part of which takes place during working hours. I’d done the same thing during my Bachelor’s programme, and I really like that arrangement. I tried to work as little as possible in evenings and weekends, but that didn’t always work out. You always need to warm up a bit first, and you need to work for at least an hour or two if you really want to be productive. Still, it shouldn’t be that much of a problem if you plan your work effectively.'
'The part-time study programme has a pretty ingenious structure. You’re basically taking the same subjects as the full-time students, except you’re doing one subject on a part-time basis whereas they’re taking two. You attend the same lectures, except it takes you twice as long. I was doing the study programme with a few colleagues from Ordina, and we interacted with the two-day-a-week part-timers and the full-time students. It proved to be a pretty good mix.'
'I like the fact that you also get lectures from people with experience in the commercial sector, rather than a team made up entirely of academics. We even had a guest lecturer who had helped to programme the very first computer system (Peter van Lith, ed.) and told us all sorts of interesting stories about that. It really helps bring the subject matter to life.'
'I did my graduation project at Ordina J-Technologies, who developed the Mod4j Model-Driven Development tool within the Smart-Java development infrastructure. My research centred around evaluating Mod4j: to what extent can Mod4j be applied to develop applications within the Ordina Smart-Java development infrastructure and which recommendations would help improve its usefulness in that regard? I spent 3.5 months on the project, and I didn’t have any time for other work during that period. That was pretty tough, to be honest. I was doing everything on my own and I had to solve all the problems I came up against. Thankfully you can always ask your supervisor for help if you have any questions.'
'The study programme focused on aspects that didn’t really play an important role in my day-to-day work, such as Requirements Engineering and Software Evolution. You learn to take a more analytical approach to problems, and to view them in a certain context: thanks to the theory and history we learned, you know what’s already been tried and what’s possible. You can underpin every solution with the facts you’ve learnt, and that really helps you to substantiate your choices.'