Crinezza Mendoza graduated from Urban Management and Development Master’s at IHS (UMD-12). She is originally from the Philippines and came to the Netherlands to join IHS with the Orange Knowledge Programme Scholarship.
What motivated you to apply for the Master's in Urban Management and Development with an Orange Knowledge Program scholarship?
I was encouraged to pursue the UMD programme with an OKP scholarship for several reasons. First, it is one of a few courses that will compliment my academic background and work experience. Secondly, the Netherlands is well-known for the best practices and experiences in managing and planning cities. Lastly, the OKP fellowship is one of the best scholarships that aims to give significance to the bilateral relationship between my country and the Netherlands, which encourages one to contribute to this bilateral agenda.
What was it like to come to the Netherlands as an OKP scholar?
I am grateful for the opportunity that was given to me by IHS and the Dutch government. As an urban planner, it is essential for me to know about different cities around the world. Thanks to the scholarship, I met many people from different countries, and I visited European cities that broadened my perspective when it comes to an understanding of urban challenges.
What was your favourite part of your master's?
My favourite part of UMD 12 was the equal, multicultural learning environment, where we had the opportunity to share work experiences and views from different cities and countries around the world.
How have UMD and the OKP/NFP scholarship helped you contribute to the development of your country?
After the degree, I came back to my hometown and continued to work at the National University. I was also promoted to higher positions, and I am currently incorporating the knowledge and skills that I gained during the UMD course, in our engagements, particularly in assessing policies and programs of national government agencies and capacity building for government employees.
If you had one piece of advice for future OKP applicants, what would it be?
Being an OKP scholar is not just about you studying in the Netherlands for free, but also it is about your contribution after you have finished your studies. My advice for future OKP applicants is, be familiar with the bilateral relationship between your country and the Netherlands so that you can realise your role to contribute to the shared vision of these countries.