Science from home
Obtaining your PhD in COVID times – the experience of Xuxi Zhang
Valedictory lecture of Johan Mackenbach
Socializing from home
Activities organized by Screen Section in 2020
To stay connected in the Screen section this year, we organized a lot of different activities, including many virtual drinks and pub quizzes. We also organized an online ‘outing’ where Marit Wijnen gave an interactive presentation about online teaching and forming a community. This interesting presentation was followed by a winetasting. A winetasting was sent to all home addresses.
Activites organized by Occupational Health section
We organised several online activities to foster social-connectedness and involvement with each other’s work during the pandemic. Instead of the usual ‘water cooler conversations’, we had weekly coffee breaks at distance to catch up and hear what everyone had planned for the upcoming week. We also organised online periodic meetings to discuss work in progress, successes, and events. Furthermore, we enjoyed an online Christmas breakfast together. Prior to the meeting, the organisers sent us personalised packages based on our breakfast habits. While eating, we reflected on 2020 and Santa tested our Christmas knowledge in a quiz.
Activities organized by Medical Decision Making
First of all, we organized monthly informal meetings to talk with each other on a regular basis. During these meetings we mainly talked about things in our lives besides work. During the summer period we were lucky to organize a few "offline" drinks in several bars in Rotterdam! Since we have a few running fanatics in our research group, there was the possibility to go for a run together prior to these drinks. For Christmas we organized a digital Christmas drink. All employees received a box with drinks and snacks and together toasted to a better 2021 and we shared nice recipes to cook for Christmas!
Activities organized by Youth Health Care
In the Youth Section, different activities were organised for the colleagues in the section to stay connected with each other and the department. First of all, we have weekly coffee break meetings online. In the beginning of the pandemic, this was twice a week, but due to work responsibilities, it was later changed to once a week. Second, some colleagues go to each other’s place once in a while to work from home together. Third, on Thursday 11th of June, a colleague hosted a pubquiz online via Discord, the participants were put in groups. It was a fun way to have social contact while answering questions about different topics varying from music to geography. Last, at the beginning of 2021, on the 5th of January, two colleagues hosted another pubquiz during the bi-weekly section meeting to celebrate the new year.
Activities organized by Social Epidemiology
As for everyone, 2020 was in our section the year of online meetings. To replace our coffee machine talks we had weekly coffee breaks in teams. The bright side of this “new normal” online lifestyle was that professor Harry Rutters could join our yearly section outing and inform us about system thinking in a very interesting and interactive session. The section outing was complemented with a pub quiz and a Secret Santa event. Gifts were sent all around the Netherlands, from Wageningen to the Hague. Given the busy days at PostNL not only the inside of the package was a surprise, the moment of delivery as well. 2020 was a strange year but we tried our best to physically distance, and remain socially close.
Activites organized by Medical care and decision making at the end of life
To stay connected in the MBL section this year, we organized a “sectie-uitje” to the Trompenburg tuinen & Arboretum. Following three interesting lectures, we dined together and walked through the gardens. For Sinterklaas we pulled digital straws and every participant received a gift. Poems were recited and whoever the poem was for was allowed to open their present.
Activities organized by Health technology assessment & implementation
To stay connected in the D&I section this year, we organized an online ‘sectieuitje’ where we played several fun games, for example an online escape room where we had to save the world from a virus. All colleagues also received a large borrelbox to enjoy at the end of our day. We organized several quizzes, like a D&I bingo to get to know each other better. We still plan regular online coffee breaks as a replacement for chit-chat at the coffee machine. Hopefully, we’ll be able to meet each other face-to-face soon!
Activities by Education
Every year the staff members of the section ‘Education and training’ enjoy's a nice and sociable lunch, preferably on a sunny terrace if the weather permits. Due to the COVID measures we could not l organize this social event in December in a restaurant or lunchroom as usual. Therefore, we arranged an online MS Teams lunch last year. On behalf of our section, we ordered a nice box with drinks and nice treats. The boxes were delivered at home.
During the online lunch we enjoyed treats and discussed about social subjects, new developments and future plans.
Activities organized by Infectious Disease Control section
The Infectious Disease Control section gathered online every week (on Tuesdays or Fridays) in 2020. During these meetings, we had research presentations by colleagues and external researchers. When there were no presentations, we used these weekly moments to catch-up professionally and personally. We also organised an online section outing. Many section members attended and due to the event being online, also colleagues staying in Indonesia, Italy and elsewhere could join us. During this event, there was an online lecture by the famous statistician Prof. Nico Nagelkerke, followed an online ‘borrel’ with quiz. For the quiz, all colleagues had sent in some fun (and unexpected) facts about themselves so that, despite the distance, we were able to get to know each other even better.