The annual vote for Wageningen University’s best teacher is starting again. Jury chair Cornelien Smit will be looking for teachers who are always capable of getting each and every student interested in their subject.
This year, the Teacher of the Year Award jury consists of Athul Sundaresan, Lisanne Kruijswijk, Lara van Veen, Cornelien Smit and Tom Ogweno (from left to right). © Guy Ackermans
From 10 to 19 January, students who have studied in Wageningen for more than a year will be able to vote for their favourite teacher. The jury, consisting of five students from different degree programmes, will then hold extensive interviews with the 15 teachers who get the most votes. Based on those interviews, the jury will draw up a shortlist with the five best teachers. One of them will win the Teacher of the Year Award, to be handed out at the end of April.
International Development Bachelor’s student Cornelien Smit is chairing the jury. The jury has not yet decided what it will be focussing on this year, says Smit. ‘Personally, I find it important that a teacher should get each and every student interested in their subject. Two of my housemates are studying Food Technology and recently took a course given by Jessica Duncan, who won the Teacher of the Year Award last year. They weren’t expecting much as they were used to the abstract aspects of their own degree, but they came back incredibly enthusiastic. I find that impressive.’
The jury won’t be working with a standardized questionnaire this year; instead, they will have five or six topics that the lecturers will be able to discuss freely. ‘We hope this will result in a casual chat in which we can really get to know the teacher.’ Smit does not know yet what topics they will be focussing on but ‘you could think of themes such as digitization in education and how to link the course material to everyday practice.’
Source of inspiration
The Teacher of the Year Award is handed out every year by University Fund Wageningen. It is intended as a source of inspiration and a sign of recognition for teachers. Students can have their say by selecting three lecturers from a list of 250. They will receive an e-mail about this with an invitation to vote.