Students and teachers take home awards at VU gala
Proud students and lecturers received their awards during the Hollywood-themed New Year’s Gala on 23 January at VU Amsterdam. We have listed the winners for you below.
Bachelor’s thesis award
The theses of William Harry King (Faculty of Science) and Sem Duijndam (Faculty of Science) were the chosen university favourites out of 18 Bachelor’s theses and 11 Master’s theses respectively. Harry King developed a kernel for an operating system that automatically resolves its own errors and could contribute to the security of computer systems. An exceptional achievement for a Bachelor’s student, as the only comparable kernel was developed by specialists with over twenty man-years of combined experience.
Master’s thesis award
The economic assessment Sem Duijndam performed on the Simson Bay Lagoon in Saint Martin is currently being used to determine the island’s environmental policy. According to the jury, his work shows that it is possible for students to have an impact on the world around them.
All nominees for the thesis awards: from left to right, Romy Kooiman, Wing Hee Fung, Graziëlle Eind, Maartje van de Koppel, Harry King and Sem Duijndam
Student Talent Award
Dymphe Mensink (Faculty of Law) impressed the jury with her entrepreneurial mindset and drive: “The apparent ease with which she tackles new projects and brings together the right people for the job is nothing short of impressive. We are convinced that she will be able to achieve all of her goals in social law and legal tech”. Ms Mensink’s ability to combine social engagement, corporate entrepreneurship and excellent study results make her a wonderful example to her fellow students at VU Amsterdam.
From left to right: Amel Labeab, Dymphe Mensink and Tamana Alozai.
Teacher Talent Award
For the Teacher Talent Award, students get to nominate their teachers. Teun Zuiderent-Jerak (Faculty of Science) was selected to receive the award. This year the Teacher Talent Award intended to shine the spotlight on teachers who make a difference in the lives of students who, in this day and age, are expected to find their own way at their universities from day one of their study programmes. According to the jury, Teun Zuiderent-Jerak motivates his students to look beyond the boundaries of academia, relates to the world around him and links developments in and outside his area of expertise. He challenges his students to become more self-aware.
Zainab Assy (2nd from left), Giulia Ranzini (4th from left) and award winner Teun Zuiderent, with the students who introduced them.
The jury says the Startup Clinic introduces “a promising and unique method of cooperation that shows great potential for further development.” In this project, a course is set up in which law students advise startups on legal matters, under the supervision of law firms. The jury believes high praise is in order for the innovative nature of the project, and sees opportunities for a similar setup in other disciplines. These courses could boost entrepreneurship education through the inclusion of a community-service-learning aspect.
A delighted Kaylee Zournas, together with colleagues Marcelle Reneman and Jan Gooijer from the Startup Clinic team, received the Innovation Prize.
Tribute to the supporter
In addition to students and teaching staff, support staff Behzad Harampanahi and Abdeslam Buharouk also got a moment in the spotlight. According to their colleagues, they deserved a tribute and presenter Ernest van der Kwast did the honours.
Read the tribute to Abdeslam Buharouk (in Dutch)
Read the tribute to Behzad Harampanahi (in Dutch)
The red carpet photos made during the event are available at vu.nl/galaphotos.
Photos: VU Amsterdam/Marieke Wijntjes