UTAlumni NetworkNewsFull alumni house at the Dutch Embassy in Berlin

Full alumni house at the Dutch Embassy in Berlin

The University of Twente’s alumni event TOGETHER with TU Delft, TU eindhoven and Wageningen University was hosted by the Embassy of the Netherlands in Berlin on Tuesday 7 February with a vibrant ‘full house’ of 4TU’ers.

Nearly 90 local alumni of the 4TU universities participated in the Dutch Engineers Alumni Network's (DEAN) first event of 2023, in Berlin. With a theme "Alumni Shaping the Future", the gathering attracted a mixed audience from a range of TU studies and graduation years who enjoyed hearing three speakers talk about sustainability and innovation in their work, and catching up afterwards with old classmates as well as new contacts during a networking reception.

Deputy Ambassador of the Netherlands in Germany, Mira Woldberg, delivered the event’s opening words  and in it stressed the importance of alumni networks not only to the alumni themselves in their professional lives, but also for society. She stated that, “By opening up new opportunities for collaboration, inspiration, innovation and growth. Your alumni network can be seen as an important bridge between the Germany and the Netherlands.”  

The evening’s three alumni speakers shared their respective career paths since graduating from the TUs while speaking about their innovative work for pioneering companies in their sectors: Gigi Laan (alumna TU Delft) a 25 Guns Taskforce Engineer at Tesla’s Berlin’s Gigafactory. Andrew Shamu (alumnus TU/e & UT) Head of R&D at NeoCarbon, a startup reversing climate change by capturing C02 through retrofitted industrial cooling towers. Pavlos Kalaitzoglou (alumnus WUR) VP Science at Infarm, one of the leading vertical farm companies in the world.

Participants during the talks were able to get a glimpse into new sustainable technologies being developed or already deployed. The evening’s moderator Joe Laufer (Alumni Officer, University of Twente) in his earlier introduction said that the alumni speakers as well as the audience in the room represented just the tip of the iceberg with regard to the amazing people making up the 8000+ member strong alumni community in Germany, of whom 1.500 are located in the greater Berlin area. Aside from Mr. Laufer, the universities were represented at the event by Mechteld van Beijeren (TU Delft), Yongwei van Bussel (TU Eindhoven) & Denise Spiekerman (Wageningen University).

Follow up events in Berlin are now being planned and will be hosted by a team of local alumni volunteers. Graduates of the 4TUs in Germany can keep up to date with news and upcoming alumni activities by joining one of a number of dedicated DEAN country Linkedin groups via this link. The group is also a useful platform for networking and sharing local information between alumni. 

4TU DEAN alumni communities were first launched back in 2014 and today are active in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Nordics, Spain, Switzerland and the USA. This unique network encompasses over 33,000 engineers and is a testimony of the global impact and reach of the four technical universities of the Netherlands.

In 2023 DEAN alumni events will also take place in Finland, Switzerland, the UK & the USA. Gatherings are organized by the UT, TUD, TU/e and Wageningen University alumni offices often in collaboration with partners like the 4TU Federation, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands.

For more information about the DEAN alumni network visit: https://www.4tu.nl/en/about_4tu/alumni/  

Group photo credit: Jenny de Jong