A Personal Touch of Nienke de Haas

Nienke de Haas.jpg

Please learn more about colleagues in our "Personal Touch" series setting employees in the spotlight. A light-hearted manner to learn about the colleagues you know and those you don't!.

This week: Nienke de Haas






1. Name, nationality, current function, department & theme?
Nienke de Haas, Dutch, PhD candidate at the Dept. Tumor Immunology, theme Cancer development and immune defense.  

2. When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up? Can you tell us something about your child years. 
When I was young I loved horse riding so I wanted to do something with horses, but later on I wanted to become a doctor as I always had a fascination with hospitals. I grew up in the north of the Netherlands with my parents and my younger sister.  

3. What was your previous academic training, where did you study and why that study? 
I studied pharmacy in Groningen. When I had to choose what to study I was still in doubt if I wanted to study medicine, but I chose to go for pharmacy as it provides a nice combination of patient care with background knowledge in chemistry and biology.  

4. The RIMLS motto is ‘to understand molecular mechanisms of disease’. What does this mean for you?
To me it means that we have to understand the molecular mechanisms of diseases to be able to find targets for drugs in order to cure patients.  

5. Who is your great example as scientists? And please give a motivation why.
I don't really have a specific example. I mostly admire scientists that are persistent and observe things that other people do not notice, which can turn out to be breakthrough findings.   

6. Which research discovery that you have made has made you most proud? 
I didn't really make big discoveries, but I believe that you should be proud of every accomplishment. For example, I am quite proud of the database I obtained with immunological characteristics of melanoma patients treated with the promising checkpoint-inhibitors. This involved a lot of difficult logistics and late night experiments. 

7. Given unlimited finance what experiment would you perform?
Unfortunately I was not able to include a lot of patients in that database as I did everything myself, that is why I would use that money to organize the logistics better and to have more people to help me. Than we could also obtain patient samples from multiple centers to increase the size of the cohort.  

8. What does your working area (desk, office) look like and what does it say about you (or your research)?
I think I can say I am well organized. I have a lot of trays to separate all my papers according to project and I almost never loose something. I also have a lot of to do lists around my desk to keep some structure.  

9. Nominate a colleague to be in the spotlight and what would you like to ask him or her?
Stefania di Blasio: how is it to work in the same department as your boyfriend? 

10. What type of person are you, quick insights:

a) Mac or PC?                               : PC
b) Theater or cinema?                 : Cinema
c) Dine out or dine in?                 : Dine in
d) Ferrari or Fiat?                          : Fiat
e) Shopaholic or chocoholic?     : Both :)
f) Culture or Nature                       : Nature​

<< back to overview news items