Renee Springer wins the 2018 Marina van Damme scholarship

University of Twente alumna Renee Springer received the sixteenth Marina van Damme Scholarship today, during the university’s annual Entrepreneurial Day. Ms Springer is a maths teacher and plans to use the €9.000 grant to enrol in a programme that would allow her to take the next step in her career: middle management in education. With this step, she would like to reduce the workload of teachers, thus increasing educational quality.

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In short

  • Renee Springer wins the 2018 Marina van Damme scholarship
  • With this award, she is committed to improving educational quality in the Netherlands

Global Goal

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About Renee Springer

In 1999, Renee Springer enrolled in the Applied Physics programme at the University of Twente. After completing her foundation year, she enrolled in the Mathematics teacher training programme at HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, followed by a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Mathematics at the University of Twente. She started working as a maths teacher in 2002 and completed her University of Twente first-level teaching qualification Master’s degree with distinction in 2007.

The plan

During her career, Ms Springer has held numerous ancillary positions in education, including profile project coordinator, section leader and coordinator of numeracy education. At her initiative, she started projects at various schools to reduce workloads and increase the quality of education. Her goal is to reduce heavy workloads to prevent sickness absence and teachers leaving the profession. She believes a career move to middle management will bring her closer to achieving this goal. The Marina van Damme Scholarship gives Ms Springer the necessary funds to enrol in a programme that will allow her to take this next step in her career.


Good education is a global necessity. Not just teachers, but also students benefit from the actions that Mr Springer will take. When the workload of teachers reduces, the quality of education will rise. That is where students benefit.

The jury

The maths teacher’s performance, ambition and dreams have greatly impressed the jury, which is why she was unanimously chosen with great conviction as the recipient of the 2018 Marina van Damme Scholarship. The jury hopes and expects that the scholarship will lead to a successful management career for Ms Springer and a reduction in the workload of teachers as well. The jury said Ms Springer is ‘talented, ambitious and persistent'.

Marina van Damme scholarship

The Marina van Damme Grant is awarded to successful former female students of the University of Twente. This scholarship is awarded by the University of Twente Funds Foundation and has been made possible by a donation from Dr M.A. van Damme-Van Weele. Ms Van Damme obtained the first doctorate to be awarded by the former Twente Technical College in 1965. The scholarship is intended to support the career advancement of talented and ambitious former female students of the University of Twente and help them achieve new ambitions. The prize consists of a sum of money (€9,000), a certificate and an artwork, created by Mohana van den Kroonenberg. Twenty candidates were nominated this year.


For the first time, the jury also decided to award a second scholarship, worth €2,500. A former female student of Educational Science, Sietske Zagers, is the recipient. Ms Zagers currently holds the position of CEO at Elevate, a social enterprise that works on e-learning training programmes for medical professionals and Life Sciences researchers.

Date: 21 June 2018 |

Source of tekst: The University of Twente |


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