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Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health
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Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health Education

Aletta's regional year challenge 2023 - Mental Health

Aletta's Regional Year Challenge is designed to provide students with an opportunity to engage with real-world data within the realm of their educational program. It is a supplementary program aimed at gaining experience with data, and fostering students' critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and research capabilities.

The program offers a variety of activities and these are some of the key highlights:

  • Yearly Challenge Theme: This year’s challenge is: “How might we improve the mental health of citizens in the Northern Netherlands”? Students are encouraged to think creatively, collaborate effectively, and develop innovative and data-driven solutions for questions or sub-challenges within the realm of this theme.
  • Real-World Data: The program provides students with access to a rich dataset from Lifelines which includes various variables that are related to (mental) health aggregated to the level of zip code and age. This dataset can support their educational or research projects and empowers them to explore, analyze, and draw meaningful insights.
  • Networking Opportunities: Aletta's Regional Year Challenge organizes various meet-ups, workshops, and networking events throughout the program. These events allow students to interact with professionals, researchers, and fellow participants, fostering a sense of community and providing valuable networking opportunities.
Aletta's Regional Year Challenge

Theme & Dataset

This year’s challenge -determined by regional stakeholders- is: how might we improve the mental health of citizens in the Northern Netherlands?

Lifelines will prepare a dataset which will include various variables that are related to this theme aggregated to the level of zipcode and age. For example data on physical activity, nutrient intake, lifestyle, mental disorder and subjective health regarding quality of life and stress. This will be combined with the data from the year challenge of 2021 and 2022, creating an even richer dataset. Previous rounds, various (groups of) students had put the dataset to use, using very different approaches (ranging from ‘studying what geographical areas could be suitable for performing qualitative field research’ to ‘simple statistical analyses’ to ‘building interactive games for children’ and anything in between).

Year Challenge 2023 in a nutshell

  • We will organise 4 meetings for all users of the data:
  1. Kick-off session with an inspiring speaker who will introduce the topic: Thursday 21 September - 15.00 - 17.00
  2. Data workshop / webinar: Thursday 28 September - 15.00 - 17.00
  3. Connecting half-way: to share initial ideas and solutions and inspire each other: Thursday 16 November - 15.00 - 17.00
  4. Sharing results: Thursday 1 february - 15.00 - 17.00

Year challenge for students

If you will be working on challenges or research questions regarding mental health within the Northern part of the Netherlands (Drenthe, Friesland, Groningen), we invite you to participate in Aletta’s Regional Year Challenge and make use of the Lifelines dataset to enrich your challenges and gain from an introduction to applied data science.

Please fill out the form , so we can update you on the program and send you invites for meetings. And ask your educational coordinator / societal organisation / client, if they are interested to know more to do the same.

Year challenge for coordinators of educational programs

Like last year, the Year Challenge is a ‘top up’ element in educational programs for students who are eager to go the extra mile. If you have clients/contexts/students who can work on questions around mental health, please inform them that they can join the Year Challenge program and gain access to the dataset.

Please fill out the form , so we can update you on the program and send you invites for meetings (non obligatory). And ask your students to do so too!

Year Challenge for societal organisations / clients

If you have challenges / research questions focusing on mental health within the Northern part of the Netherlands (Drenthe, Friesland, Groningen), then students who have been linked to you can join the Year Challenge program.

All participating students will follow the educational program they are enrolled in at their own institute. It is up to you and the program coordinator to finetune your challenge/research question and set expectations regarding the final product, language and support needed.

Please fill out the form , so we can update you on the program and send you invites for meetings (non obligatory). And ask your students to do so too!

Aletta's Regional Year Challenge

Last modified:10 July 2023 07.46 a.m.
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