Student in the spotlight: Mireya Catalán Castillo

22 sep 2020.
  • Age: 27
  • Residence: Leeuwarden
  • Education: Chemistry, University of Barcelona

After I graduated in chemistry at the University of Barcelona, I was wondering what was next for me. I’ve always been environmentally conscious because my parents are also very aware. We’ve always recycled a lot ever since I was little, I really grew up with it. So, I decided I wanted to do a master for environmental engineering because I always knew that it was my purpose to do something for our environment. In my home country Spain people are not conscious of the environment and we really need to change that mindset. We have a lot of air pollution, water pollution and not many people recycle. I feel that we have to take care of our planet, because if we don’t the next few generations of people won’t be able to see the beauty of the world we have now.

When I was thinking about where I wanted to do my master thesis and internship, I knew I wanted to go to the north of Europe. The knowledge and practice of water technology is far more ahead here and I would be able to learn a lot. It was important to me that I would be able to challenge myself and experience new things along the way.

When I explained my purpose to my tutor, since I wanted to focus on my professional career within the water technology field, he told me about the Centre of Expertise Water Technology. I couldn’t let the opportunity pass and applied for the internship. Luckily, I was accepted and, after ten days of quarantine, I’m finally here!

I was truly surprised when I went outside for the first time after my quarantine period. The Netherlands is so beautiful and it looks a lot different from Spain. I really enjoy painting and watching the sunrise and sunset at the park, so I’m excited to do that here as well. I also really like the Dutch sense of humor. It is kind of similar to the Spanish humor, so I think that it works out perfectly for me.

In my time in the Netherlands I really want to be able to be proud of myself and also make my parents and family proud at the same time. I really want to deliver good work. In addition to that I would like to learn as much as I can from the project I’m working on, my colleagues and the professionals at CEW. I’m super excited for everything that is to come and to live this experience to the fullest!

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