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Tahrim pursued the Law Major at PPLE College and now works as a journalist at Amsterdam city newspaper ‘Het Parool’. He shares how his PPLE experience equipped him with valuable skills for his journalism career and what makes the study programme, as well as the people within it, stand out.

Discovering PPLE’s unique value

“The first time I realized how special PPLE was occurred during my minor in Sociology and when I started taking courses in the Dutch bachelor's programme Rechtsgeleerdheid, paving the way for my Dutch law Master's programme. 

I only then realised how large classrooms in other programmes were, the limited contact hours they had, and how narrow the scope of some of these other courses were – all contrary to the PPLE programme. 

I do feel the broad scope of analysis that PPLE has taught me, and the knack for effectively dealing with multiple tasks, is something that has benefited me from day one of my working career."

A special sense of community

“I found PPLE to be a really warm community. It's very nice to be in this environment where you're with driven fellow students who understand your aspirations while at the same time challenging your viewpoints. Within the community, there was both academic and personal support, and naturally, we bonded over borrels and parties throughout our coursework. 

What I've found after graduating PPLE, almost five years ago, is that – even though many of your PPLE friends and peers will travel all around the world for interesting and amazing further studies and jobs – you will always find one another back when you're supposed to, and that when you do, it just feels like you'll be in a Monday morning lecture again. It feels familiar and safe, just like in the programme.“

Learning from diversity

“I feel like the diversity that PPLE has taught me, both in cultural terms as well as substantively when it comes to different disciplines of research, it allows me to draw connections more easily between different topics and angles to look at a certain perspective. As a journalist, a job in which I cover a variety of issues from a variety of angles, I feel that this is an important skill to develop. 

As a born and raised Dutchman, it was insightful for me to talk to students from all kinds of backgrounds when it comes to the issues that Amsterdam faces. But also when it comes to – say – the topic of administrative law, which I teach in a PPLE course, it's really fun and inspiring to have students tell me how the body administrative law is organised in their respective home countries, such as Ukraine or India.“

Seeking guidance from PPLE’s faculty

“Part of the PPLE experience is the process of making difficult decisions as you progress through the programme, fine-tuning your academic focus. I remember being torn about my major choice, doubting between the Law and Politics majors, and I was talking to the Politics major coordinator at that time, Lucy Hall. We had a heart-to-heart talk after which she told me: you sound like a law student. I'm still thankful for that conversation up to this day, because this choice has shaped so much of what I've been doing afterwards. 

I would thus always recommend reaching out to the kind people in PPLE faculty who are open to advise students on their next career choices – you'll always find this one faculty member you'll click with.“