20 March 2019

140 professors cycling to 3500 primary-school students during Meet the Professor

On Wednesday morning 27 March, professors of Utrecht University will cycle in their robes to various primary schools in Utrecht. 7th and 8th-year students have been looking forward to the professors arriving for a long time. During Meet the Professor, they finally get the chance to meet them and ask them everything.

Alle professoren verzameld voor het Academiegebouw. foto: Lize Kraan.

Unravelling identity

In the build-up to 27 March, the participating classes each received a golden envelope with class ideas and a hint on their visiting professor every month. This let every class find out more and more about their professor's identity and research. This is because the fields of expertise vary strongly from climate change, particle physics and diversity to ethics and plant pathology. At the same time, the children learn about science, research and the university in this early stage of their education.

Professors' enthusiasm

One of the professors had a tip for his colleagues last year: “Don't do it just for the children, but also for yourself. It forces you to explain complex thoughts in simple terms; very good training.” Professor mr. Annetje Ottow is also very enthusiastic: “I really think Meet the Professor is a fantastic initiative; a class full of questions, surprise and frankness. The funniest question I got in a previous edition was ‘How was it to become a professor as a woman?’ I said I'm very proud of that.”