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Erik Horstman en Tom Veldkamp
Erik Horstman

UT Teacher of the Year 2024: Erik Horstman

The University of Twente’s ‘Teacher of the Year 2024’ is Erik Horstman (ET), a lecturer in Civil Engineering. The other two finalists were Alexander Brinkman (TNW) teacher Applied Physics and Jolien van Straalen-Pas (BMS) teacher Psychology. The Teacher of the Year event was part of the Week of Education 2024.

Exciting final with three finalists

The final of the Teacher of the Year competition featured three very closely matched finalists: Alexander Brinkman (Applied Physics), Jolien van Straalen-Pas (Psychology), and the eventual winner Erik Horstman (Civil Engineering). Each of them had already won the departmental teaching award within their programme earlier this year, qualifying them to compete for the UT Teacher of the Year 2024 title.

As per tradition, the final took place in the form of 15-minute mini-lectures. These lectures allowed the teachers to demonstrate their didactic skills and passion for their field. The jury, consisting of students and teachers, had the difficult task of choosing a winner from these three teachers.

Mini lectures

Professor Alexander Brinkman kicked off the final, telling the audience more about quantum thermodynamics. Associate Professor Erik Horstman's lecture was about what mangroves can mean to the world. Jolien concluded the series of mini-lectures with a lecture on statistics in psychology research and which factors can influence consequences.

Erik Horstman was declared the winner after the mini-lecture series, in which each finalist was impressed with their knowledge, enthusiasm, and presentation skills. He delivered a lecture on mangroves during the event. Horstman stood out for his ability to convey concepts in an accessible and engaging manner and for his interaction with the audience during his lecture. He received the award from Rector Magnificus Tom Veldkamp.

In his acceptance speech, Horstman emphasized the value of good education and the importance of student engagement. "It is an honour to receive this recognition. Education is a collective effort, and I want to thank my students for their continuous dedication and enthusiasm," said Horstman.

Erik Horstman

I am honored and humbled to be the University of Twente Teacher of the Year! Thanks to my colleagues in the Civil Engineering department for their support and the teamwork. But most of all, thanks to all our amazing students and Study Association ConcepT for having nominated me and for inspiring me to always keep improving!

Erik Horstman


Is raising the dykes the only way to reduce flood risk, or are there smarter, cheaper solutions? How do you install a resilient electricity grid in a hurricane zone? Which factors do you have to keep in mind to ensure that new roads or structures will endure the effects of climate change? How do you secure and balance the many interests of the government, residents, companies, or the environment in such large projects? If these questions fascinate you, the three-year, English-taught Bachelor’s in Civil Engineering is the right choice for you. 

Week of Education 2024

The Teacher of the Year event was a highlight of the Week of Education, which included more than 20 workshops, lectures, and interactive sessions focused on improving, celebrating, and inspiring educational practices and promoting educational innovation.

As an example, the Brinksma Innovation Grant (BIG) was awarded to Tracy Craig earlier this week. A quick recap of the session: