Did you learn anything fun in the fall break? I wouldn't be surprised if many HZ graduates have an immediate answer to that. One colleague recently told me about a particularly valuable conversation with a coach, another learned leadership lessons while walking, and I read a wonderful book on organizational transitions (Navigate) last week. We are learning something within education. That, of course, fits the field in which we work.

What I have immense admiration for are people who not only continue to learn, but retrain. Take the part-time students at the HZ. The woman who after years in the hospitality industry still chooses her dream of becoming a teacher. The mother and daughter I spoke to on our open day, where they had a good time together to orientate on a new study. The man who, a whole working day behind him, told me in the evening in the Atrium that he was enjoying his Associate degree and getting so much energy from it.

A smart move

This group of students may become increasingly large in the coming years because themes such as sustainability, digitization and equity of opportunity, in whatever field, call for continuous learning and innovation.

But also because of the tightness in the labor market. Zeeland's job board is full of jobs, some of which did not exist a few years ago - from environmental manager to data specialist. Upskilling and retraining is literally a smart move, but also fun, of course. As Gandhi put it, "Live as if tomorrow is your last day and learn as if you will never die.

Election Programs

Lifelong development is on the agenda. Nationally, it appears in many election programs, with many parties believing that lifelong development (LLO) should become a task of publicly funded institutions like ours. Zeeland set up a real LLO team. Within the HZ they are working on their own vision. Bottom up, with input from all corners of HZ, because this is a future that concerns everyone. From the outside in as well: starting with Zeeland's challenges and with the demand from practice.