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In 2020, employees and students were again called upon to apply for financial support for projects to improve diversity and inclusion at the Faculty of Science. This time no fewer than six projects have received a Grassroots Science4all grant!

The jury -existing of Dean Peter van Tienderen, FSR member Sophie van Tilburg and Diversity officer Machiel Keestra – pointed out that they were very happy to virtually hand out stipendia to six projects. 'They are very different creative and engaging projects all aiming at increasing Diversity & Inclusion in Science Park and its affiliated communities,' according to Machiel Keestra.

And the winners are:

Inspire youth with science talk. Inspire youth with Talk That Science.

Applicants: Osman Ulger (student), Nicolien Janssens (student), Nikki Westeijn (student)

This project is aimed to increase the percentage of first-year bachelor students with a non-Western background at the Faculty of Science and to spark interest in beta sciences in young children from under-represented and/or disadvantaged backgrounds. This will be done by having a child from said background join an interview of the podcast Talk That Science with a researcher. The entire interview will be filmed, recorded and made available for other schools to use as teaching material. It will also be made available on YouTube and thanks to a collaboration with young influencers a wide and effective impact will be ensured.

COVID-19 student monitor

Applicants Marwa Ahmed (student), Lela Roos (staff), Khaled Tamimy (staff), Erik van Halewijn (staff)

This project concerns the funding of a student-led research into a topic of social urgency: COVID-19. With the sudden breach of COVID-19, the concept of studying has changed. And with this change, new inequalities emerge and existing inequalities are emphasized. Observing these developments with a student-monitor is essential to provide appropriate solutions and thus limit the negative effects of the crisis.

Workshop series: How is diversity (or lack thereof) affecting science?

Applicants Cognito (Master Brain and Cognitive Sciences Student Union): Destiny Carbello, Ava Ma de Sousa, Ada Orken, Hugo Snijders, Margot Steijger and Vincent Tijms (staff).

This project is aimed at organising an ongoing workshop series over the 2020-2021 academic year. Each workshop will consist of two parts and have their own specific focus topic. In the first portion, scientists from underrepresented communities (gender-identity, sexual orientation, ethnicities and cultures) will give a talk to educate and build awareness on a specific issue relating to diversity, or lack thereof, in science. The second part of the workshop will consist of putting all attendees into small groups to work on an activity to reflect, discuss, and apply what they learned from the speaker. 

Copyright: Machiel Keestra FNWI
We are glad that even under the current circumstances so many students and staff have shown to be concerned by who we are, how we are functioning and what we are doing as a community. In addition, they’ve developed ideas and intiatives that we all will benefit from. For as organizational science has shown, we need the ‘informational diversity’ promoted by projects like the above if we want to be an even more creative and adaptive community! Machiel Keestra, Faculty Diversity Officer and jury member Grassroots Science4all

BetaBridge MentorProgram

Applicants Jeroen Goedkoop (staff), Stijn Kleijweg (recent graduate), Rumeysa Unal (student/staff), Artur Moeijes (student/staff), Khaled Tamimy (student/staff)

Certain (often marginalized elsewhere) groups of students have to overcome considerably more obstacles on their way to university. The BetaBridge Mentor program tries to overcome these obstacles by taking students from the Faculty of Science, with or without a first generation background, to schools (and community centers) as role models or coach / mentors for first generation students, to help them make the transition to make college.

At the intersection of Artscience: A Performance on Photosynthesizing Humans

Applicants Iza Awad (student), Dr. Raoul Frese (staff)

This applicants received a Grassroots science4all grant in 2019. With that grant they presented the first clothing line where the models garments, made out of a method of fermenting tea, were also used as a snack for the public. With this new grant the team will use the newly designed material to present a scientific interpretation on intersectionality within the natural sciences.

Women in Data Science Amsterdam

Applicants Jeanne Kroeger (staff), Ana Varbanescu (staff)

This project is aimed at hosting the Women in Data Science Amsterdam 2021 event. This event aims to give female data scientists and academic researchers from the Amsterdam region a platform to share their work and experiences. It also aims to encourage knowledge sharing and collaboration by inviting national and international speakers to share their research.

About Grassroots Science4all

In March 2019 the Faculty of Science started the grassroots programme Science4all. In 2020 the faculty continues this programme. Staff and students are invited to apply for financial support for projects aimed at improving diversity and inclusivity at the Faculty of Science. Per project there is between €500 and €5,000 available. 

Diversity at the Faculty of Science

The Faculty of Science aims to be an inclusive community where every person, regardless of race, gender or cultural background, feels welcome and valued. In our policies we strive to stimulate the diversity in our Faculty community.