Kristin Vanlommel is an academic assistant at the Institute of Education and Information Sciences.
“As an academic assistant, you spend half your time working on your PhD and the remainder of your time supporting one or more professors in their educational tasks. I find teaching fascinating, especially because I am given the opportunity to delve deeper into subjects that interest me. I also like the research aspect of my job a lot. In my doctoral research I want to see how schools can optimise their policy choices by using information they can gather purposefully and systematically. I really like the combination of research and education."
“I have a lot of freedom in my job. I can choose my working hours myself without having to justify it to anyone else. And when I want to write a text without being disturbed, or read articles, I work from home. But this great freedom does not mean that you are left entirely to your own devices. I regularly confer with my supervisor about my PhD. He gives me a lot of feedback and helps me establish contacts with other researchers in my discipline. Every new PhD student or assistant also has a mentor. This person is not directly involved in the content of your work but is someone you can turn to when you have a problem".
“I do think that I have a busy job, and it can be quite hard at times, but thanks to the flexible working hours I am able to combine everything with my private life. I'm also really satisfied with my pay. Before I started working at the university I spent 13 years teaching in secondary education. These years are taken into account for my seniority, meaning I did not have to start again on a starter salary when I moved to the university."