“My goal is to create something that can help young people“

Curious and creative, that’s how Maartje Veneman (22) describes herself. The third-year Communication and Multimedia Design student from Wormer, The Netherlands wants to know everything about everything. “I always asked questions when I was a child, I still do.”

Text by Marije de Boer

After finishing high school, Maartje decided to do something with her interest and talent in art. She chose to study Illustration at the Hogeschool voor de Kunsten in Utrecht, the Netherlands. “I quickly realised that, while I loved to draw and make art, I didn’t see myself as a working artist, which made me drop out and switch to another major.” She chose Communication and Multimedia Design, because it combined her passions for art and media perfectly.

However, her interest in journalism remained at the back of her mind, which is why she chose to do the minor International Journalism. “I went to the Hogeschool van Amsterdam minor market and really hesitated between International Publishing and International Journalism; both were very interesting to me. In the end I decided on International Journalism, because I think it’s more useful for me personally and fits my interests best.”

She doesn’t think she’s going to end up as a journalist though. “My goal is to create something that can help young people with mental problems, especially ADD, because it is something very close to my heart. I have ADD myself and I think that’s something I needed when I was younger. Growing up, I never really liked school. Studying was something that I always struggled with, because I’m a visual learner. I don’t like reading long texts, I rather learn by seeing and doing things, so that’s what I want to incorporate into my products. I also want to use my minor to make my future products better.” She adds that she does want to do something artistic on the side, like making paintings and Lino prints for fun.

When asked about her opinion of the current state of journalism and the media, her answer was loud and clear: the competition needs to disappear or change. “I’d rather see good, well-thought out stories than quick-written stories. Journalists in today’s world are going crazy with trying to be first, and I think that’s a shame.”