Christof Van Mol
Assistant Professor in Sociology of Migration at Tilburg University
Can you introduce yourself?
I am Christof Van Mol, Assistant Professor in Sociology of Migration at Tilburg University. I am part of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, where I also form part of the Science Committee. Besides my work at the faculty I am also involved in the organization of the Honours Programme, which brings together students from all the schools. My interest in international migration also connects well to my status as a regular cross-border commuter, as I live in Belgium together with my wife and three children.
Research and education are two important pillars of academia. What do they mean to you?
Both are very important for me. I truly believe teaching is one of the core pillars of a university, and therefore it is something to take very seriously. Previous to joining Tilburg University, I was a senior researcher, and what I was missing most in that position was teaching and being in touch with students. My teaching at Tilburg University is organized around encouraging students to develop a sociological mindset as well as to dive into the interdisciplinary world of international migration. Consequently, my teaching and research are often intertwined, particularly as my research very often adopts an interdisciplinary approach. Furthermore, besides international migration I have a strong research interest in the internationalisation of higher education, which naturally is also very relevant when teaching in international classrooms.
You are now one of the initial members of the TYA. How is that like?
Naturally I feel honoured to form part of the TYA. It allows to connect with academics with a similar mindset in order to strive for positive change at the institution whenever needed, and to defend the interests of all young academics at Tilburg University – independent of the faculty they are working at. I believe this can really make a difference for their career.
I am sure you all have topics that are important to you. What is your main focus in the TYA?
Honestly speaking, I still need to find out my main focus in the TYA. Yet I have a broad interest in many different aspects the TYA is working on. If I really have to pick some topics, I would say I am particularly interested in contributing on ideas / viewpoints on new strategic plans of the university / faculty, to support the career development of young scholars, and to participate in valorization and outreach activities, both at Tilburg University and beyond.