Student Angelica Maineri

Angelica Maineri
  • Nationality: Italian

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Student Angelica Maineri is Italian and student of the Double Degree program at Tilburg University and the University of Trento. In addition to the Double Degree she is doing an internship at Tilburg University for the SERISS project, as part of the Extended Master.


"I am very satisfied with my experiences here so far. I am learning a lot, not only as a student, but as a person in general. I have had opportunities here that I could not imagine when I arrived; for instance, I am also doing a traineeship at the Sociology Department here. And I also became a teaching assistant in a Bachelor’s course. I have a lot to do, but I am learning a lot!"




Educational background

I attended the liceo classico in Italy, which is a high school highly focused on the humanities. Studying ancient Greek and Latin might seem of little use nowadays, but it is very useful to learn how to study and develop logical reasoning skills. Parallel to that, I also attended the Conservatory; I studied harp and graduated in 2012. In 2011, I began a Bachelor in Social Sciences at the Universitá Cattolica in Milan. I graduated in 2014, and went on to pursue a Master in Sociology and Social Research at the University of Trento that same year. I came to Tilburg after winning a Double Degree scholarship. Therefore I am taking a Master in Sociology here, which also counts as the second year of the Master in Trento.
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What are your experiences so far?

At the beginning of the year, I found the program difficult: I had assignments every week, reading material to prepare for and presentations to organize. But after some weeks I adapted to the new rhythm and now I am able to say that it is not more difficult than the Italian system, but it is very different. The workload here is spread evenly throughout the whole unit/semester, so the final exam is only the end point of the work that you have built up to week by week. So if you faithfully do all the assignments and read all the material that is required for the lectures, then you only have to revise for the exam. And where the group work is concerned, it is true that it requires a lot of time and effort, but it is a a very useful way of learning. Additionally, working together is more enjoyable than working alone! Our class is very small, so we all know each other: this is good, because we international students have the opportunity to get to know and work with Dutch students while, in other bigger courses, I heard this is not easy to achieve. The relationship with lecturers is less formal than in Italy. They are usually available to meet students and discuss things with them: this is a very good opportunity for students to develop their interests and skills.

I am very satisfied with my experiences here so far. I am learning a lot, not only as a student, but as a person in general. I have had opportunities here that I could not imagine when I arrived; for instance, I am also doing a traineeship at the Sociology Department here. And I also became a teaching assistant in a Bachelor’s course. I have a lot to do, but I am learning a lot!

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Why Tilburg University?

I came to Tilburg University primarily because it was the destination of the Double Degree Program. But I was very happy to come to the Netherlands, because I expected it to be an interesting and open-minded country, and I was curious about experiencing a new life style. When I first arrived, I was really impressed with the organization and the facilities. In Italy, we are used to historical buildings, which are beautiful, but often not really suited to students and their 21st-century needs. Here, a lot of facilities are available to students, ranging from the Esplanade Bar to the Sports Center. And also the staff is well prepared and available to help; I had some administrative problems at the beginning, but thanks to the International Office, I was able to solve them quickly.
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What are your experiences of Tilburg University?

As I said above, I am really positively impressed with the University’s facilities. The library is large, and the possibility to book computers makes it easy and efficient to organize study time. There are lots of restaurants, so you can find very different types of food for lunch. The Sports Center offers a lot of different classes and facilities. There are many places where you can meet for group work.

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What do you think of Tilburg as a city?

I like Tilburg. It is small, but I think it is well suited for student life. In the city center, all kinds of shops and facilities can be found. Also for the nightlife, there are several places where you can meet with friends. All cities in the Netherlands can be easily reached by train. Eindhoven airport is only one hour away. There are also parks and the forest, so when it is sunny, you can enjoy the outdoors!
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Career aspirations

I still do not know what to do after I finish the Master, and where I will go. I will probably apply for a PhD position, but I still do not know where. Otherwise, I would like to work in a private research institute. I like doing social research, ask people what they think, and investigate their values and attitudes. I think this Master is preparing me for different kinds of jobs, so I still have several options.
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Do you have any tips for new students?

I strongly recommend them to come to Tilburg University. The teaching style is challenging and interesting, the campus is full of facilities and the courses provide a really high-quality learning environment. If you are not from the Netherlands, Tilburg University can also provide you with a unique experience abroad, useful to developing your knowledge and skills.

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