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English, please

Shakespeare was definitely wrong. There is something in a name. A rose may not smell otherwise, a curriculum really does sound better if you call it by an English name.

That is why we now have ‘Life Sciences and Technology'. Imagine 'Levenswetenschappen en technologie'. How horrible!I propose 'Physical Sciences and Technology' instead of 'Technische Natuurkunde'. I%m not quite sure of the 'physical'. It sounds more like sports & sex than like physics. But that%s even better! More students are attracted by sports & sex than by physics. The lecture on 'The physics of sex' gathered more people than lectures on Nobelprice winning work on the quantum Hall effect.So be glamourous and say it in English! There is however an exception to this rule. The great James Clerk Maxwell taught himself the 'low Dutch language'. Why? Because then he could read van der Waals% thesis! So if you want to get attention abroad, say it in Dutch.The Department (or is it Faculty? I lost track in all these terms) has understood this perfectly. In Physics Today 52(5)(1999) p.109 a full page (!) advertisement for a U(H)D position appeared. In Dutch! No doubt, this will attract a new Maxwell to this side of the ocean.Completely in the spirit of this policy, an advertisement in De Volkskrant June 19, 1999 appeared in English. It states that a common foundation curriculum is offered for all students in the faculty (yes, it says 'faculty' but I learned at school that faculty is staff, not organisation). As far as I know such a curriculum starts only in 2000, if it starts at all. Like to see fighting professors? Ask two of them to discuss the pros and cons of the 'Gemeenschappelijke Propedeuse’.Of course this little lie is no problem for a Department (may be Faculty) which offers two years of study for the price of one. I had to learn about this offer from the newspapers. That%s not a serious flaw. After all, who the hell am I? But that this announcement was made in Dutch, that is a real mistake!By the way, word has reached me that UTwente cancelled clustering. Waste of time. They cancelled the common foundation curriculum years ago. If the new Maxwell is a sensible man, she goes East.Erik Lagendijk

Shakespeare was definitely wrong. There is something in a name. A rose may not smell otherwise, a curriculum really does sound better if you call it by an English name. That is why we now have ‘Life Sciences and Technology'. Imagine 'Levenswetenschappen en technologie'. How horrible!I propose 'Physical Sciences and Technology' instead of 'Technische Natuurkunde'. I%m not quite sure of the 'physical'. It sounds more like sports & sex than like physics. But that%s even better! More students are attracted by sports & sex than by physics. The lecture on 'The physics of sex' gathered more people than lectures on Nobelprice winning work on the quantum Hall effect.So be glamourous and say it in English! There is however an exception to this rule. The great James Clerk Maxwell taught himself the 'low Dutch language'. Why? Because then he could read van der Waals% thesis! So if you want to get attention abroad, say it in Dutch.The Department (or is it Faculty? I lost track in all these terms) has understood this perfectly. In Physics Today 52(5)(1999) p.109 a full page (!) advertisement for a U(H)D position appeared. In Dutch! No doubt, this will attract a new Maxwell to this side of the ocean.Completely in the spirit of this policy, an advertisement in De Volkskrant June 19, 1999 appeared in English. It states that a common foundation curriculum is offered for all students in the faculty (yes, it says 'faculty' but I learned at school that faculty is staff, not organisation). As far as I know such a curriculum starts only in 2000, if it starts at all. Like to see fighting professors? Ask two of them to discuss the pros and cons of the 'Gemeenschappelijke Propedeuse’.Of course this little lie is no problem for a Department (may be Faculty) which offers two years of study for the price of one. I had to learn about this offer from the newspapers. That%s not a serious flaw. After all, who the hell am I? But that this announcement was made in Dutch, that is a real mistake!By the way, word has reached me that UTwente cancelled clustering. Waste of time. They cancelled the common foundation curriculum years ago. If the new Maxwell is a sensible man, she goes East.Erik Lagendijk

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