Organization, Governance & Management (OGM) program at the University of Aruba: “We are about a new generation of leaders instilling good governance, sustainability and efficiency”

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“In this pandemic time we need to re-think our focus and work more together,” says Mieke de Droog, Program Manager Bachelor Organization, Governance & Management (OGM) and Vice Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Science. Two first years’ students of this program, Jason Luis and Michael Flores, are very clear about it: OGM is about a new generation of leaders. You have to instill the method of good governance, make it sustainable, effective, and make it work.”

OGM started in 2009 and has 45 alumni at this moment, six of them have their master already. De Droog: “They are moving on different areas and that is great to see. It is all about sustainability, we want to give a good service and what is that? We need to work more together with different departments and that is one of the things you learn with OGM. Seeing things from different perspectives and within the importance of the now and the future.” One thing is making a policy another thing is implementing it, states De Droog. Therefore OGM not only offers theory, but from the first year on has a lot of practical assignments plus their teaching concept is interactive-contextual meaning they talk a lot. “The first years’ students go into the field and this year it was Respaldo (Mental Care Institution) where they heard their issues and did a consultancy presentation for them.” Professions to think of after a completed OGM study are researcher, policy advisor, consultant or manager. Important in these times where governments are scrutinized.

It is not about before and after COVID-19, we are right in it

Jason Luis, 1st year student of the OGM program: “My experience with the COVID-19 situation was initially not so difficult because our generation is used to the digital world and I was actually looking forward to online learning as a new experience.” He was definitely able to learn a lot from it and the university managed to efficiently and effectively adapt to the changes, he says. “They made sure the students were not overwhelmed and smoothened the transition into certain changes. Also they provided us with coaching and guidance to make sure we were okay.”

De Droog: “Our students are young students, coming from HAVO and EPI, but also students that have worked some years like Michael or are already a father like Jason here. Both of them did very well and although we had the pandemic they obtained their first year.” OGM tries to make the transition to online teaching as smooth as possible. “It is not easy because we all need to learn the new way but together as a team we are doing it. We even had a virtual closing event where we asked the students what they want to do. Reflection is essential as a change in the world starts with yourself.” For the upcoming year OGM is growing into blended learning where students can at least meet once a week. De Droog says the students need that. Online teaching is often tiring because of tech issues and the fact that you are not able to feel each other. “It is not about before and after COVID-19, we are right in it.”

Make a change

Michael Flores, also a 1st year student, finds that the new generation has to create a certain amount of people to be able to lead the country or organizations. “That is what we learn here at OGM. First we learn who you are by reflection on yourself and what you can offer to society, your class or an organization. You can further develop your skills by different tools they give you.” He wanted to improve himself, personally and professionally. “I used to work some years already before I started this program and I saw some flaws in some organizations I wanted to change. But I thought the only way I can make a change is to do that myself. As a professional later on I can bring on all I’ve learned.”

Register now

Registration for the University of Aruba is open now. Have a look at their website for more information: