Interdisciplinarity is a huge strength of FHK

Photo: Hotze Eisma Photo: Hotze Eisma

Tilburg, April 16 2018 This article in Dutch, dit artikel in het Nederlands

Working across disciplines is one of the strategic goals of FHK. With Claudia Linders (51), the institution has brought in someone for whom this is second nature. Since 3rd April she is Head of Studies of the English language school Fontys Academy of Architecture and Urbanism, taking over from Marc Glaudemans in this function.

Claudia has built up an impressive career. After her studies in architecture at the Rotterdamse Academie van Bouwkunst she spent years giving leadership in interdisciplinary teaching with the Academie van Bouwkunst Amsterdam. At FHK the Head of Studies comes in contact with her third academy for architecture, of which there are six in The Netherlands. She also spent five years responsible for the course Interior Architecture and Furniture Design at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in The Hague. Along with diverse advisory and supervisory roles Claudia has her own office in Amsterdam, which covers architecture as well as art in public spaces.

At FHK the Ouderkerk aan de Amstel local is purposely returning to the link with education. “I have a big heart that wants to stimulate young people, scout talent and get them working in the right place in society. I still follow students from previous schools. It’s great to see when after some time someone has a blossoming architect practice going.” She has the ambition to guide young professionals as well as the established order.

Claudia works two days a week at FHK. If that’s enough remains to be seen, she says, because the bar is high. “The academy has become smaller the last few years due to crisis in the sector. Now you see the sector growing again and that offers the chance to make it into a larger institution. That’s also a goal for me.” She is pleased that she can call on a ‘strong team’ to help her with this.


The Head of Studies is already well at home in the world of tertiary education. What she finds ‘super interesting’ about FHK is the subject areas that come together. Interdisciplinarity, there it is again! “That is a huge strength. The broad spectrum of disciplines makes it interesting for ‘my’ academy to look for collaboration. I think there are many opportunities available, also to distinguish yourself from other academies. You can lift each other up to a higher level by combining expertise. I’ve seen what that does with students and teachers: indescribable.”

From her students Claudia asks for an entrepreneurial attitude. Who demonstrates such an attitude is, according to her, ‘a permanent leader and has the potential to pioneer’; to see things that others miss and to design their own projects.

Joint responsibility

What she looks forwards to is building the ties between the academy and the region; not only with Tilburg but also with the Southern region of the The Netherlands and perhaps Germany and Belgium. “And if we can, more than currently happens, attract realistic commissions to the institution, whereby we can do business with stakeholders. A very interesting learning process, as you make students responsible for production, within the context of a safe learning environment.”


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