Organizing Committee

Organizing committee 2015



Charlotte Willems

Background: BSc Psychology, MSc Cognitive Psychology at the University of Groningen.

PhD project: The central goal of my PhD project is to reveal the underlying cognitive mechanisms of efficient attentional selection over time, and particularly, to focus on individual differences in this attentional selection process.

Role in the committee: As the communications and PR director I am responsible for managing all external and internal communication regarding the conference. Thereby, I will take care of the promotional process to attract as many enthusiastic PhD students as possible.

Future: One of my passions is pursuing a sustainable and green life style. In the future, I would like to applicate this personal aim at a higher level by obtaining a job where I can combine this passion with both my personal talents, as time management and organizing, and the skills that I acquired during my PhD, as programming, project management, and critical thinking.

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Name: Ena Sokol

Background: Medical faculty, University Medical Center Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

PhD project: Dynamics of desmosomal proteins in pemphigus

Role in the committee: As a program director I am responsible for defining goals of the whole conference, as well as of the individual sessions and workshops. I aim in collecting ideas, translating them into a potential program and finalizing the complete program of the conference.


Name: Heleen Hoogeveen

Background: BSc Psychology, MSc Cognitive Psychology at the University of Groningen.

PhD project: Neural substrates of age-related changes in food perception.

Role in the committee: As the chairperson of the organizing committee I will coordinate and oversee all committee activities. By supporting and empowering all other members to achieve their own deadlines and goals, I will stimulate the development of a successful conference.

Future: My career profile comprises further development of my knowledge and expertise in Healthcare and Technology. More specifically, I would like to extend the pioneering work on the neuroscience of eating behavior, preferably in a private and public partnership. I see myself in a people management position, wherein flexibility and opportunities to learn are important future prerequisites. My PhD at the UMCG makes me goal-oriented and curious about this future.”

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Name: Tushar Tomar

Background: BScPharmacy at Delhi University India. Msc Medical and Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of Groningen.

PhD project: My PhD project is about identification of novel  epigenetic chemoresponse markers for platinum-based chemotherapy in ovarian cancer, particularly in high-grade serous ovarian cancer subtype.

Role in the committee: Being treasurer, I am responsible for managing all the financial aspects of the GSMS conference 2014. Besides this, I am dealing with conference sponsorship matters as well. Furthermore, I will take care of the financial evaluations and statistics of our conference, to improve forthcoming GSMS conferences.

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Name: Dario Cecilio Fernandes

Background:Bsc Psychology, MSc Pyschology at the Universidade São Francisco (Brazil)

PhD project: Explore the relationship between declarative and procedural knowledge by studying the testing and spacing effects in medical skills simulation training.

Role in the committee: As logistics officer I am responsible to ensure all conference activities are executed accordingly. Manage and coordinate the equipment, catering, resources, signage and rooms for the conference.

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Name: Stefan Wessel

Background: BSc Life Science & Technology, MSc Biomedical Engineering at the University of Groningen.

PhD project: Oral health benefits of chewing gum.

Role in the committee: As a media director I am mainly responsible for building, maintaining and updating the website. Other activities include creating promotional material, photo and video management and  composing a conference book.

Future: After completing my PhD I would like to transfer my acquired skills to industry and implement the knowledge of my PhD in the development of a product.

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Name: Nicole Dijk

Background: Medicine at the University of Groningen, MSc

PhD project: Predicting Asthma phenotypes: characterization of IL1RL1 in asthma.

Role in the committee: As the speaker coordinator I will oversee the recruitment of speakers in coordination with other committee members. I will be the contact person of the speakers and will be responsible for all speaker-related activities, such as presentations discussions, travel activities and media/PR related topics.

Future: My future goal is to become a paediatrician. I see it as a challenge to combine clinical work with research, a combination which is very valuable I think. During my PhD I have developed myself already in so many unique ways which I never would have foreseen at the beginning. Dealing with lab protocols and complicated statistical programs, planning an appointment with 3 busy professors (at the same time…), handling deadlines, collaborating with foreign study groups are all activities that made me aware of my strength and weak points. This will hopefully help me in creating a future in which I can use all my talents and developed skills in the best possible way.

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Name: Mirjan van Dijk

Background: BSc Human Movement Sciences, MSc Behavioral and Cognitive Neurosciences at the University of Groningen.

PhD project: Organization of the visual and auditory systems in hemispherectomized patients.

Role in the committee: As the volunteer coordinator I will recruit and instruct a group of enthusiastic volunteers that will help me and the other committee members in making sure the conference runs smoothly and becomes a great success.

Future: When I picture my future I see myself working abroad, in a job where I can implement research results into the clinical practice. I would like to contribute as directly as possible to patient care and by doing so fulfill my desire to help people. Whether this will be in an academic setting, in a company or at a government level I am not sure yet. To me all these options have their charm, advantages but also disadvantages. During my PhD and with the help of our conference I can hopefully figure out which of these options would suit my talents and interests best.

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