UTAlumni CommunityNewsDutch Embassy Paris 4TU event showcases alumni impact in deep tech!

Dutch Embassy Paris 4TU event showcases alumni impact in deep tech!

The University of Twente together with TU Delft, TU Eindhoven & Wageningen University organized an exciting 4TU alumni network event in Paris on Wednesday March 20th that was hosted by the Embassy of the Netherlands. The gathering coincided with the visit of 4TU startups attending the ‘Hello Tomorrow’ Global Summit.

What are the drivers behind researchers? What role did the ‘TU’ experience have in shaping them? Where might their innovations lead us in the future? How can this change our lives for the better? These are just a few of the topics raised by a panel of local alumni researchers as well as startup founders during a stimulating evening programme for nearly 100 4TU alumni and guests.

Innovation Advisor Joannette Polo welcomed attendees on behalf of the Dutch Embassy. She shared details about the Netherlands Innovation Network while citing the strong reputation of Dutch technical universities among their French peers. Fellow Innovation Advisor Esther Hogenhout also spoke briefly about the Franco-Dutch Innovation Pact signed last year that focuses on developing new synergies between the two countries in the areas of digitalisation, key technologies, and industrial sustainability. With over 1000 alumni just in the Paris region alone the local 4TU network represents a unique resource therefore for connecting the Netherlands and France.

Also delivering opening words at the event as one of the organizers of the 4TU ‘Hello Tomorrow’ Paris mission was Michiel Krake, Advisor Startup Acceleration at Novel-T. Michiel described what the participating entrepreneurs would be busy doing during their visit to the city. He also explained that as ‘Deep Tech’ startups their unique development horizon was typically over a decade long involving advanced technologies based on substantial scientific or engineering innovations.

Joe Laufer from the UT Alumni Office concluded the introduction part of the programme with a short presentation about the 4TU Alumni Network which this year celebrates its 10th year anniversary. Joe stressed that as one of the largest technical networks of its kind in the world it was an invaluable and unique resource for both alumni as well as universities.

During the evening’s panel interview, Gulibusitan Abulizi (alumna UT), Wahid Awad (alumnus WUR), Remy Kusters (alumnus TU/e) & Mireia Leon (alumna TU Delft) shared details about their career paths, current work and ambitions for the future in exciting emerging ‘deep tech’ sectors related to quantum computing, precision (gene) medicine, cultivated meat and space exploration. The discussion highlighted the vast broad impact of 4TU universities in society through alumni.

The presence of the dozen or so 4TU entrepreneurs at the event ensured local alumni had even more chances to hear about other unique innovations including short pitches from startups InsectSense and ReCarbn right before the networking drinks commenced.

Representatives from the organizing alumni offices Anouk Dijkstal (TU Delft), Joe Laufer (UT), Mayke Oldenburg (TU/e) & Denise Spiekerman (Wageningen) expressed satisfaction in a very successful first event of 2024 for the 4TU Alumni Network. Follow up gatherings will also take place later this year in the UK, USA, Germany and Switzerland.

Participating 4TU Startups included: CarbonX, ExCulture, FlowBeams, Flux Robotics, InsectSense, Nature’s Principles, Ore Energy, ReCarbn, Scope Biosciences, ScoutinScience, wearM.AI & XMEM

ABOUT 4TU.ALUMNI: The 4TU Alumni Network of the University of Twente, TU Delft, TU Eindhoven & Wageningen University launched its activities in 2014 and currently has communities in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Nordics, Spain, Switzerland and the USA. The objective of bringing alumni together is to create valuable communities for them. Members are encouraged to use these communities for sharing both achievements and information as well as tapping into the expertise of each other.

4TU alumni work across a wide range of sectors, and are affiliated not only with the most prestigious organisations of their fields but in many cases also self-funded start-ups. Some of them may have only recently completed their studies in the Netherlands while others have already lived in one of these countries for a decade or more. This network, therefore, represents a significant source of skills, contacts, and advice.