General

The university from a different perspective

Winners think tank rise to a great height

Yesterday evening, Thursday 12 June, the winners of Create the UT of Tomorrow made a balloon ride above the university campus. Almost 300 staff members, students and alumni participated in the think tank about the future of the University of Twente. Four groups won first prize. Mixed Vision, Utopia, Toxy Turbo's and Net Worth were literally given the opportunity to view the university from a different perspective.

The event Create the UT of Tomorrow took place on 1 April and resulted in many useful and creative ideas. For example, the group Mixed Vision is a great proponent for more freedom of choice for students. In their proposal, education is organized like a festival. The group Utopia wondered how the university can have a world-wide impact and how students can be trained to become flexible professionals. The Toxy Turbo's provided ideas to encourage spontaneous contacts between the university and corporate life. The university has to literally show more of themselves. Net Worth focused on the question how we could organize ourselves in such a way that we will promote innovative research and be able to work in a flexible manner.

The four winning groups presented their ideas and proposals to the Strategic Council yesterday. This council comprises the Executive Board, deans and scientific directors. In addition all proposals resulting from Create will be combined in the bidbook that will be published soon.

Meeting and experience

Susanne Wichman, programme leader, is satisfied with the event. Wichman: "The think tank provided us with many inspiring ideas. Several will now be developed further and some ideas have already been included in the conceptual strategy document. For example, in many proposals the campus was presented as an important place for meetings and experiences. This notion is also emphatically expressed in the conceptual strategy document."

The region as a magnet

One idea that's also being developed further is related to presenting the region of Twente more distinctly. Wichman continues: "Many groups indicated that the university and the Twente region should collaborate even more with partners and networks all over the world. Our region should develop to be the linchpin of the world, attracting interesting business partners like a magnet. The university has an important role to play in this. We have therefore asked students from the European Public Administration programme to write an essay about how Twente as a region can present itself better to the world and what role the university can take on in this matter.

Think tank 24/7

Students and staff are closely involved with the development of various issues, including the idea to provide staff with the opportunity to exchange ideas not just one day a year, but always and everywhere. As part of TEM education, Computer Science students are developing an application that should make a 24/7 think tank possible.

Sequel

Create the UT of Tomorrow may possibly get a sequel. Susanne Wichman: "We are considering organizing an event every year that is connected with the strategy and at which the exchange of knowledge is key. But if this plan becomes reality, the day will of course be organized very differently. The university wants to be innovative and creative, so: practice what you preach."