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Leiden Science Run collects over 10,000 euros for refugee students

A record number of 83 teams collected a record sum of 10,566.37 euros on 29 September during the Leiden Science Run. The full sum goes to the Foundation for Refugee Students UAF.

Shiny day

Long before the start of the competition, enthusiastic and slightly nervous runners gathered behind the Gorlaeus Lecture Halls. Most of them in shorts and T-shirts; just like in previous editions, the weather during the relay race was brilliant. After an energetic warm-up to music, Dean Geert de Snoo kicked-off the third edition of the Leidse Science Run just after twelve o'clock.

The Leiden Science Run is a sponsor run in which four runners per team each run 5 kilometers across the Bio Science Park in Leiden and Oegstgeest. Participating teams pay 20 euros registration fee for the charity: Foundation for Refugee Students UAF. In addition, the teams try to collect as much sponsor money as possible.

Companies of the Bio Science Park

New to this third edition of the Science Run were the many companies of the Bio Science Park participating: BaseClear, CHDR, Astellas and Mimetas all sent teams to the race. Furthermore, in addition to employees and students from the Faculty of Science, several teams from the Faculty of Governance and Global Affiars in The Hague, and teams from other university departments participated.

Lesage Munyemana from the Leiden University Meeting Point for refugee students during his race

Teun Sweere two-time winner

The winning team of the Leiden Science Run was running association team Currimus 1, with a time of 1 hour, 11 minutes and 6 seconds. The team also had the fastest individual runner of the day: Teun Sweere completed the 5 kilometers in 17 minutes, 19 seconds. Sweere obtained his PhD in 2017 at the chemistry institute LIC and was also the winner of the first edition of the Science Run, back in 2015. The fastest female runner of the day was Inge van ‘t Veer of ZoBio Running Exps, clocking in at 20 minutes and 33 seconds.


The winning team Curimus 1 with Teun Sweere, Jeroen van Tubergen, Fré Vink and Thijs van Mourik

The secret of winning

The secret of the winning team is simple, says final runner Jeroen van Tubergen, Informatics student. 'Practice. We have three trainings per week with Currimus: interval, crosstraining and a duration course. In addition, all team members still train for individual goals; Teun, for example, is a very good triathlon athlete.'

Currimus provided four participating teams, says Van Tubergen. 'We are co-organizers, we for example also help with setting up and our people are along the route. And as a student running club, we are of course keen to win.

Team Super Brilliant People collected the largest sum of money

Donations as a birthday present

Another special achievement came from team Super Brilliant People. This team collected the most money, no less than 670 euro. 'Our LACDR department participated with three teams', says runner Ilona Den Hartog. ‘We think it is very important that everyone can study and that we help each other.’ ‘Ilona was the heavyweight in bringing in donations,’ says her teammate Bas Goulooze. ‘For her birthday, she asked people to sponsor our team instead of a gift.’

Running assessors

The new Science student assessor Marleen van Dorst also participated in her first Sciene Run. ‘Near the Corpus museum, I thought I was almost there, but I still had to run almost a whole kilometer! That was a little shock, but I kept it up.’ Het predecessor Bernice Dekker already had some experience. The running went better than last year, she says, but did not result in a faster time. But most importantly: 'I survived again!'

Team UAF

Of course the UAF itself was also present. Not only to collect the sponsor money, but also to run the four times 5 kilometers. After receiving the check, Remco de Kok from UAF was full of praise for the event. 'It was great to be here. The atmosphere is fantastic and it's nice to see how you all work together for our good cause. We will definitely participate again next year!'

Dean Geert de Snoo reveals the amount of collected money with Remco de Kok of the UAF

About UAF

The proceeds from the Science Run go to the Foundation for Refugee Students UAF. The UAF believes in the talent and perseverance of highly educated refugees and regards education as the key to successful integration.

UAF was founded in 1948, making it the oldest refugee organisation in the Netherlands. The foundation guides higher educated refugees during their studies and helps them to find suiting jobs. Many of the refugees studied or obtained their diploma in the country of origin. These diplomas are usually not valid here. Studying in the Netherlands offers them the opportunity to develop themselves and increases their contribution to society. Several students study at the Faculty of Science with the support of UAF.

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