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Discoverer of the Year, Best Dissertation and Education prize 2015

During the Faculty of Science New Year's reception, Daniël Rozen was named Discoverer of the year 2015. Nienke van der Marel and Koen van der Maaden both won the prize for the best dissertation and Jeroen van Smeden was named Best Teacher of 2015.

Discoverer of the year 2015: Daniël Rozen

Members of staff, students, faculty alumni and external parties were able to vote for their favourite 'discoverer' of the year. Daniël won nearly 22% of the votes.

In his research, Daniël proved that bacteria produce antibiotics to fight rival strains. A different theory which suggested that bacteria use these antibiotics for communication and cooperation is now no longer plausible. This research is of great clinical importance, as it shows how bacteria can be employed to produce new antibiotics in the lab. 
Read more about the research

David Font Vivanco came second with nearly 21% of the votes. It was a close call, as the difference between 1 st and 2 nd place was a mere 6 votes.  Gerjan de Bruin came 3 rd with 11% of the votes.

Nominees for this prize were: Matthew Kenworthy (Leiden Observatory), Vincenzo Vitelli (Leiden Institute of Physics), Thomas Bäck (Leiden Institute for Advanced Computer Science ), Martina Chirilus-Bruckner (Mathematical Institute), Gerjan de Bruin (Leiden Institute of Chemistry), Vanessa Froderman (Leiden Academic Centre for Drug Research), Daniël Rozen (Institute of Biology Leiden), David Font Vivanco (Institute of Environmental Sciences).

2 winners C.J. Kok award 'Dissertation of the year 2015': Koen van der Maaden and Nienke van der Marel

This year the Faculty Committee for the C.J. Kok Jury award has chosen two winners for the 'Best dissertation of 2015’ award:

Both dissertations are of top scientific quality and have received a lot of attention, from both inside and outside the scientific community. The topics are very different: Nienke van der Marel's dissertation deals with the formation of planets and Koen van der Maaden examines microneedles for administering medicines and vaccines, but the two topics each count as an exponent of the two focus areas for research at the faculty:  Fundamentals of Science and ‘ BioScience: the Science Base of Health’.

This year, the committee for the C.J. Kok awards consisted of professors Carel ten Cate, Miranda van Eck, Bas Edixhoven, Koen Kuijken and Marcellus Ubbink.

Nominees for this prize were: Nienke van der Marel (Leiden Observatory), Bernard van Heck (Leiden Institute of Physics), Suzanne Sniekers (Mathematical Institute), Juriaan Rot (Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science), Bart Limburg (Leiden Institute of Chemistry), Koen van der Maaden (Leiden Academic Center for Drug Research), Rohola Hosseini (Institute of Biology Leiden) en Patrick Henriksson (Institute of Environmental Sciences).

Teacher of the Year 2015: Jeroen van Smeden

The students have voted Jeroen van Smeden Teacher of the Year. Van Smeden is very popular with his students, particularly because he manages to infect them with his enthusiasm and can convey complex material clearly. Plus, he is always prepared to go the extra mile for his students and the study association.   

Research and education are closely linked within the faculty. Mono-disciplinary education and multidisciplinary collaboration gives students the skills they need to become the researchers of tomorrow. Excellent education is invaluable in this. To be able to translate research into a programme of study and to be able to get young people excited about science is of primary importance. This is why the faculty does not just give out the C.J. Kok awards every year, but also awards the Education prize, which is a student initiative. 

The jury, made up of the chairpersons of the study association and the Faculty Board assessor, judged each teacher against three criteria: quality of teaching, the relationship between education and recent developments in the field and the way in which the teacher makes the link between their own field and other disciplines.

Nominees for this prize were: Jarle Brinchmann (Astronomy), Vincenzo Vitelli (Physics), Onno van Gaans (Mathematics), Hendrik-Jan Hoogeboom (Computer Science), Navraj Pannu (Life Science & Technology), Ludo Juurlink (Molecular Science & Technology and Chemistry), Jeroen van Smeden (Bio-Farmaceutical Science), Michiel Hooykaas (Biology) and Jeroen Guinée (Industrial Ecology).

See also

Leiden Science Our Talents and Discoveries of 2015