Involvement of the industry in education is gaining importance

HAN University of Applied Sciences organized a seminar at the closing of the first run of semester 6, where Kees Slingerland was keynote speaker. In the past few months Bachelor students (3rd year) got a new setup in their education. They worked in project teams on research questions formulated by automotive companies. These companies were also supervising the student work, in order to have an optimal interaction between education and practice. This sounds good. Of course, the involvement of industrial partners can make education more dynamic and more oriented at the practical situation. But there is much more importance of involvement of the industry in regular education.

Developing high-tech skills

First of all, there is a growing gap between the demand for young engineers and the number of graduates from HAN and other Universities for Applied Sciences. That already was concluded in the KPMG survey, commissioned by ACE in 2019. It was by the industry marked as their main obstruction for growth. Also on the European level, there is a great concern on the availability of enough high-tech professionals in the future. A EU research “High Tech Skills for Europe” -ACE was member of the expert panel to this research- shows that 82% of the 200 interviewed professionals indicate involvement of industrial partners as very helpful in the development of high-tech skills now and in the future.


At the same moment, the automotive industry is developing significant and fast. Interlinkages with other industries, like the energy sector or the ICT branch, are getting stronger. The automotive industry is becoming part of a bigger picture. Such developments can directly be illustrated with practical experiences by industrial parties in the education of young professionals. All of such arguments helped in the redesign of the semester 6 and the first run was successful. ACE was happy to help getting this new approach introduced.