Groningen University has set up an annex in Drenthe province where students can follow a master’s degree course in ‘advanced instrumentation’, the Volkskrant reports on Monday.
The university already has an annex in Leeuwarden and Drenthe is the ‘missing link’ vice chairman Jan de Jeu told the paper. ‘We describe ourselves as the university of the north and now we really are,’ he said.
This is the first time university education has been offered in the province, the Volkskrant says.
The university is launching the course in the 2016/17 academic year at the Astron institute for radio astronomy in Dwingeloo. Engineering and electronic engineering students will be able to apply their expertise to Astron projects.
For example, Astron is involved in the international Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project which aims to complete a network of thousands of antennae in Australia and South Africa to find out more about the origins of the universe.
Drenthe’s provincial council has set aside ‘tens of thousands of euros’ to help launch the new degree. Asked if the investment in 15 to 20 students is justified, provincial executive Ard van der Tuuk told the Volkskrant the aim is to show that ‘everything is possible in Drenthe’.
In addition, the project will help reduce a provincial brain drain and encourage students to stay in the region, he said.
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