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Nitie Mardjan - Education designer, trainer and coach, Saxion University of Applied Science

Kris Holkenborg - Alumnus of honours program, Saxion University of Applied Science


Nitie Mardjan: Upon graduating as a physical therapist in 1986 I have worked in rehab, in- and outpatient clinics, a hospital and a private health center in The Netherlands and the U.S. In 1992 I made the switch to education. Since then I have done many different things with a main thread: educational innovation and design. Among other I have helped developing an international program for physical therapy students, curricular re-design projects in physical therapy, developing a bachelor program in podiatry, an honors program, interdisciplinary education projects and faculty professionalization programs. I was a member of the Saxion research group ‘Enterpreneurship in health care’ for twelve years. Social systems thinking was an important constituent of the research & innovation program of this group, which allowed me to help redesign work processes in health care organizations. Social innovation, systems thinking and design science research are themes that I focus on in education. For instance with students in the Saxion master program (MSc) for physical therapists and the honors program ‘Health and wellbeing’.

From the Saxion Education Innovation Hub we have developed a professionalization journey for faculty (‘community learning’) and managers (‘educational leadership’). We received a Comenius Fellowship grant for this project. This journey is about ‘deep learning’ based on the principle: ‘what faculty and managers require from their students, they must have experienced themselves’.


Kris Holkenborg is an alumnus of one of the honours programs Saxion University of Applied Science facilitates. During his last study year Kris was part of the core team of Saxion’s Top Talent Program. He took on a role within the various experiments regarding faculty training programs and designs for new concepts. For his contribution he was awarded with the Top Talent Student Award. Currently, he is working within several departments of Saxion University of Applied Science. His duties are related to executing, designing and supporting implementation of peer support, coaching and community learning. Additionally, he is pursuing an Educational Science & Technology master’s degree at University of Twente.

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