What were your expectations when you applied for a SIDS MSc fellowship at IHE Delft? And were these expectations met?
I was fortunate to have an insight to IHE Delft prior to both my application and my acceptance. I anticipated an in-depth theoretical approach to addressing water issues along with practical examples and approaches I would be able to employ upon completion. These expectations were met and in some cases exceeded. Not only was I able to acquire knowledge from formal education at IHE but also through interactions with classmates/colleagues from multiple countries. However, I regret that I did not have the opportunity for greater academic collaboration with students from different programmes. The majority of my learning was based within my programme and specialisation so I hope that future would hold chances whereby scholars are able to integrate in that regard.
What can IHE Delft do to improve the impact of its programmes to support water management in SIDS?
Many water professionals in SIDS are unable to pursue complete MSc programmes nor are they able to participate in short courses due to financial or professional obligations. A combination of online materials and courses as well as occasional workshops in SIDS regions can support the continued efforts to support the improvement of capacities in SIDS countries. Given that IHE Delft lecturers are themselves active water practitioners, information can be transferred remotely and be immediately applied to the jobs/activities of water professionals in SIDS territories. The availability of templates and manuals (for particular water fields) may also be useful.
How do you intend to apply your lessons learned?
Apart from using my new knowledge professionally by working with local government as well as local and regional organisations, I intend to continue working with NGOs and youth organisations to encourage local and community based implementations geared towards environmental and natural resource management. I am also ready to work with the network of colleagues I engaged with during my research. I intend on continuing that relationship whereby we can support each other in our activities and share lessons from academic and professional experiences.
How will you stay in touch with your fellow SIDS students?
The students of the current SIDS batch have already created a network through which we will maintain communication and share information going forward. However, it would be a good step to create a formal network through which SIDS scholars can specifically lend their knowledge or experience whether it be for jobs or for the benefit of the continuation of the SIDS Fellowship programme.
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