The objective of the Marina van Damme Fund is to support talented female alumni who have graduated or obtained a doctorate from the TU/e in taking the next step or making the next turn in their careers. The €9000 grant is intended to add depth or breadth to the recipient’s knowledge or to support an international orientation in the form of a study program, internship, or project.
“With this grant, I would like to support ambitious young women, because I think that it will be a long time before women will fill half of all positions at the highest levels of universities and companies,” states Marina van Damme, the grant’s 85-year-old eponym. She made a conscious choice to have her name associated with the grant, as she expects that an anonymous grant would receive less attention and have less impact. “It is less anonymous, and this allows me to serve as a role model.”
In 2015, the happy winner was Lisanne van Oppen, an alumna of the TU/e program in Biomedical Engineering, who is currently a PhD student affiliated with Radboud University Medical Center in Nijmegen, where she is conducting research on targeted drug delivery. Van Oppen will use the €9000 grant to spend three months in Barcelona for a detailed introduction to new imaging techniques, including super-resolution microscopy.
Important career step
The Marina van Damme grant is awarded to the female engineer submitting the best proposal. The €9000 grant is intended to help the winner take an important step in her career. The sum must be spent on training that will make it possible to make a ground-breaking career step. Two €1000 incentive prizes are awarded as well.
Van Damme has reserved the amount of €253,000 for the TU/e to ensure that the prize can be awarded for the coming 23 years. With the signature of the agreement, the grant became the largest legacy ever received by the TU/e.
With their remarkable projects, the student teams are proving that things can be done more quickly, more efficiently, safer, and – most importantly – more sustainably. The students are pooling their knowledge and creativity in order to realize their adventurous dreams. “The special thing about these student teams is that they incite a great deal of energy on the part of young people. Those teams have an incredible amount of potential,” notes Prof. Maarten Steinbuch, Professor of Control Systems Technology at the TU/e.
For this reason, he decided to use the proceeds from the sales of the smart block-calendar to make two donations of €5000 each to the student teams. “With this contribution, I would like to encourage young technical talent. This type of activity deserves more attention, as does technology among young people.”
“An important condition for innovation”
The professor who initiated the Automotive Bachelor’s program and the Master’s program in Automotive Technology has a great deal of appreciation for the courage that the teams have shown in going beyond the beaten path. “This is an important condition for innovation, and it should be encouraged as much as possible.”