‘People often think I have cancer’

Student Tristan raps about his alopecia

‘People often think I have cancer’

On his new single Kaal (‘Bald’), Tristan Hofman bares both his soul and his skin. Due to alopecia, he has no hair, and he’s not ashamed of that anymore. ‘I wouldn’t have had the courage to do this three years ago.’
By Sisi van Halsema / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen
30 October om 10:11 uur.
Laatst gewijzigd op 16 January 2020
om 15:00 uur.
October 30 at 10:11 AM.
Last modified on January 16, 2020
at 15:00 PM.

It’s a cool little reggaeton track you could hear playing at any club on a Saturday night. But anyone who is familiar with business student and rapper Tristan Hofman, aka Solus, knows his new single Kaal has deeper meaning.  

It started when he was six: when she was cutting his hair, Tristan’s mother noticed he had a little bald spot on the back of his head. She knew what it was. Tristan’s grandfather had also suffered from alopecia universalis, a condition that makes your hair fall out. His father had it as well, but his hair eventually grew back. Tristan wasn’t as fortunate: by the time he was ten years old, he was completely bald. 

Now, at twenty-two, he’s a perfectly self-assured young man. But it’s taken him a while to get there. ‘High school wasn’t an easy time for me. Puberty is rough at the best of times and especially when you have a condition like this that just messes with your confidence.’ He skipped school a lot to escape the bullying. ‘I missed more than four hundred hours and I was a total video game addict.’ 

Creams and pills

There is no cure for alopecia. ‘I had a hard time accepting baldness as my reality. I tried everything — creams, pills — but nothing helped.’ 

When he was eighteen, Tristan made up his mind. Though he never wore a wig like his grandfather had, he did always cover his head with a bandanna. ‘Then, I just reached that point where I didn’t want to hide anymore’, he says. ‘New Year’s Eve was a great opportunity to get rid of my bandanna. As the clock struck twelve, I threw it into the fire. My whole family was there. A new year, new opportunities, and a new Tristan.’    

His move to Groningen was also a new start. ‘A lot of people make assumptions. They often think I’ve got cancer. What I don’t like is when they don’t ask me what’s going on. But in Groningen people are so direct that they just come up and ask me why I’m bald.’ 

And now he’s put out Kaal, the final step in his journey of self-acceptance. ‘I wouldn’t have had the courage to do this three years ago’, says Tristan. 

The track spontaneously came together during a session with fellow rapper De Kees, at his good friend Olivier’s studio. ‘The three of us went into the studio for a night of fun. We didn’t plan on making anything. At one point we had this rhythm, and Olivier started saying stuff on the beat: “This guy is bald, bald, bald.” And that somehow became a track.’ 

Self-mockery

Balder than Humberto
We’re harder than metal 

Kaal is full of self-mockery. ‘It’s not some sensitive track about my life with alopecia’, Tristan explains. ‘I didn’t want it to be too serious. You have to be able to laugh at yourself.’ 

Humour is a theme in his music: a year ago, he and XO Nomit put out the track Studi, about DUO and study debt. ‘I want to mix things you already know about with stuff you might not think works with it. Kaal is a fun little pop song with something extra.’ 

Tristan has no aspirations to make it big. ‘But we did say it would be really cool if they played the track at the Negende Cirkel. And I’d love for other people with alopecia to see me making a fool of myself on stage, while still having fun. I’d love it if that made them realise they don’t have to be ashamed.’ 

Scary stories are good for you

How can you stimulate healthy living?

Scary stories are good for you

If you want young people to smoke or drink less, your best bet is to tell them a scary story about the horrific effects of tobacco and alcohol and make it star someone their age.
By Christien Boomsma / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen
30 September om 11:32 uur.
Laatst gewijzigd op 3 October 2019
om 16:14 uur.
September 30 at 11:32 AM.
Last modified on October 3, 2019
at 16:14 PM.

Her boyfriend would often shudder whenever he walked into the room and saw the pictures on the computer screen. ‘Can’t you go study something else?’ he’d ask.  

His reaction isn’t surprising, since most of the time Joëlle Ooms would be looking at pictures showing the effects of smoking. Or she’d be looking at skin cancer. Her screen would fill with images of horrific surgeries, blackened lungs, or skin tumours. ‘The pictures I looked really were quite gross. But I was looking at them through my research glasses, to see if I could use them.’ 

Fear appeals

Communication exper Ooms was working on a study of scary stories in the health sector. She already knew that a good story can lead to people changing their behaviour to examine their breasts or testicles for tumours, and that scary messages worked as well. But no one had studied whether a combination of the two – scary stories – were effective in any way. She will receive her PhD for her research on October 17.

‘I looked at the effect of so-called fear appeals or testimonials. Stories of people’s experiences like you read in magazines’, says Ooms. ‘Like about women who didn’t get a mammogram and who now have breast cancer.’ 

People have to identify with the protagonist

Ooms also wanted to know if these fear appeals had to be textual. ‘I wanted to know whether images would work as well. They’re much more effective in campaigns where you want to hang posters.’ 

What’s important in these stories is the concept of ‘transportation’; people should get sucked into the story and want to know how it ends. ‘Otherwise people will just stop watching.’ So how does one accomplish this? 

Identification

For that, the stories have to make people identify with the protagonist. People are really good at identifying with other people, Ooms explains. ‘Take a film like Wall-E for example. It’s so cute! And even though people know it’s not real and it’s just a stupid little robot, they still want him to be okay.’ 

Scary stories are used in a myriad of ways, she says. For instance, in campaigns to reduce fireworks accidents, where people talk about how they lost fingers or eyes to dangerous fireworks, or a campaign to make traffic safer, where someone is shown hitting a child because he’s driving too fast on a residential street. But it’s still unclear which factors actually make the message hit home and make people change their ingrained bad behaviours.

Young people are fairly egotistical, only thinking about themselves

So Ooms went looking for suitable scary stories to show to her test subjects. It wasn’t easy: the stories couldn’t be too long or too short. They had to be personal stories, as well as believable. ‘And I’m not a writer!’ 

Ultimately, she found a testimonial about a man with testicular cancer in a British magazine that met her criteria. She adapted and translated it, doing the same for stories about breast cancer and skin cancer. Finally, she found some pictures that showed the effects of smoking. She then showed these to her test subjects.

Peers

She noticed that young people were mainly transported into the story and able to identify with the protagonist if the story starred one of their peers. ‘They were transported more and showed more emotion’, says Ooms. Interestingly enough, older test subjects responded differently. For them, it didn’t matter whether the protagonist was a peer; they were also transported into stories with younger protagonists, and were able to identify with them as well. So what’s the deal? 

Ooms can only speculate. ‘Maybe it’s because older people remember what it was like when they were young. Also, young people are fairly egotistical, only thinking about themselves.’ The protagonist’s gender had no discernible effect on the test subjects.

Images

The same processes occurred when Ooms used images rather than stories. She showed people an image of two sad people next to a coffin, with the text ‘smoking can harm your unborn child’ superimposed over it. ‘People identify with the people in the picture, and they’re transported as well.’ 

This knowledge could be used to tailor campaigns to specific audiences. Ooms says it’s better to use a young person than an old one. It’s been proved to reach a wider audience. And if you want to use posters, you can just print the scary story so people can read it.

Post-doc Fabiola wants to save the environment in style

‘It’s like Airbnb for fashion’, Fabiola Polli says of her eco-friendly marketplace Chicfashic.

A new platform for sustainable clothing

Post-doc Fabiola wants to save the environment in style

Fabiola Polli has two passions: science and sustainable clothing. Her love for science led her to a PhD in synthetic biology at the RUG, and later, a post-doc. In her spare time, she helps other people appreciate the potential of previously loved clothes with her new ‘green platform’ Chicfashic.
By Ayla Pollmann
23 September om 14:09 uur.
Laatst gewijzigd op 3 October 2019
om 9:17 uur.
September 23 at 14:09 PM.
Last modified on October 3, 2019
at 9:17 AM.

Fabiola Polli grew up in Rome, the city of fashion. Her mum and sister were seamstresses, and so Fabiola has always believed that clothes should be recreated, repaired, and exchanged. ‘I always saw the beauty in secondhand clothes.’

But Chicfashic is not just about enjoying the clothes, says Fabiola. It’s also about raising awareness and creating community. The fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world and clothing production often relies on exploitative salaries and dangerous working conditions for workers.

Renting clothes

Fabiola wanted to build a platform that would fundamentally change our approach to clothes in Groningen by finding ways to make the clothes we have last longer and reducing the production of new clothes. ‘It’s like Airbnb for fashion’, Fabiola explains. ‘It’s an eco-friendly marketplace where clothes can be rented or sold at low prices.’

RUG students with small bank accounts will benefit the most from Chicfashic, where they can even rent single-use pieces like skiing gear and ballgowns. ‘Thanks to the low cost of buying or renting clothes, Chicfashic makes it possible to change your style every day and be a different person any time you please’, says Fabiola. ‘Today, a punk rocker; tomorrow, a businessman.’

Connect

Fabiola has tried to engineer community-building into her platform as well. To rent or buy an item, you reach out to the seller personally. The next step is meeting up in person for the exchange – an opportunity for users to get know each other and share their ideas about sustainability, says Fabiola.

In order to educate others about the dangers of fast fashion, she and her team of volunteers are offering free monthly workshops. ‘I want people to know that we can fix things, and experience pride and happiness by doing so.’

‘Deplatforming’ and Paul Cliteur

The discussion concerning Paul Cliteur’s impending speech in Groningen got pretty heated this week. Cliteur himself lashed out against the academics in the UKrant, and philosophy students Justin Warners and Thomas Krabbenbos wrote us open letters about the matter.

 

Paul Cliteur

‘I insult absolutely nobody’ – Interview

Paul Cliteur (Forum voor Democratie) will be giving a guest lecture during the Night of Philosophy on Friday. We asked the FvD top figure five questions. ‘No-platforming is based on the principle of political manipulation.’

 

Justin Warners

‘Who’s the one deplatforming around here?’ – Opinion

Last week, FvD front man wrote an open letter to the RUG, after students and lecturers wondered whether Cliteur should be allowed to speak during the Night of Philosophy. Student Justin Warners responds with a letter of his own.’

Thomas Krabbenbos

‘UKrant “deplatformed” Lenz’ – Opinion

If the discussion around Martin Lenz and Paul Cliteur isn’t represented properly, it’s all too easy to say that everyone should be heard, philosophy student Thomas Krabbenbos says. He focuses to the essence of the matter.’

Book Week: What do prominent RUG employees read?

It’s national Book Week in the Netherlands! Need a tip? This week, prominent RUG employees tell us about their favourite book. Click on the button under each picture for the complete interview; we’ll be adding a new tip every day.
By Mella Fuchs

RUG poet Sofia Manouki

Slaughterhouse-Five

‘It’s not the kind of war memoir that leaves you shell-shocked and dazed.’

Teacher of the Year Marc Kramer

Thinking, fast and slow

‘The book has given me great insight into myself and people in general.’

Head of the UB Marjolein Nieboer

The Hours

‘This book made me realise that everyone’s lives, no matter who they are or when they lived, are really interesting.’

Heroes of UKrant: a puppy to de-stress

The University of Amsterdam started a puppy room, to help students de-stress during exams. The UB in Groningen won’t hear of doing the same, yet. Time for the ‘Heroes of UKrant’ and our break-out star, labradoodle pup Nova.
Video by Robbert Andringa

First night in the tent camp

Rafel Fernandez (27), a Master’s student from Barcelona, is vlogging about life in the ACLO tent camp. See how his Tuesday went.
Video by Rafel Fernandez and Lidian Boelens
In the video we said Mehdi is from Mumbai, but that’s not correct. Actually, he is from Dubai.

Protection Racket

Abandoned as an infant high in the mountains of Colorado, James was taken in and raised by a family of marmots. They trained him in the art of satire, but warned him: ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ He didn’t understand the truth of their words until his adopted rodent brother, Donald Trump’s hair, turned to the dark side.

James could only sit by and watch, helpless and appalled, as his evil brother meme’d his way to the White House. Forever changed by what he had seen, James fled to The Netherlands and vowed to always use his powers for good.

Last week it was announced that the board of Vindicat would not be receiving this year’s committee grants. The disciplinary measure comes in response to several infractions, including an unreported incident at the Vindicat building wherein a student was beaten up by several others.

The university hopes that denying the grants will be enough to cause the organisation to come to their senses, but Vindicat leadership has reportedly been unperturbed. At a press conference last week they announced plans to make back the money.

‘After the enormous success of our trial period last year with sushi mall, we at Vindicat are proud to announce the official launch of our protection racket,’ said former rector Stijn Derksen. ‘There are plenty of nice businesses in Groningen, and it would really be a shame if something were to happen to them.’

Vindicat claims that they alone are in the position to protect the businesses of Groningen from the threats they face on a daily basis.

‘And this system, works, folks,’ continued Derksen. ‘We’re providing a valuable service. Just look at sushi mall. We were partnered with them last year in order to conduct market research, and the very same week they decided they didn’t need our protection any more, their restaurant got absolutely trashed.’

Growing an Empire

Squads of Vindicat members have been out in force. Hundreds of businesses and institutions around Groningen, including the Ukrant itself have been solicited to buy into the scheme.

We were hesitant at first, but the cricket bats and lead pipes they presented as evidence were remarkably convincing.

Send help.

Sustainable Groningen

Abandoned as an infant high in the mountains of Colorado, James was taken in and raised by a family of marmots. They trained him in the art of satire, but warned him: ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ He didn’t understand the truth of their words until his adopted rodent brother, Donald Trump’s hair, turned to the dark side.

James could only sit by and watch, helpless and appalled, as his evil brother meme’d his way to the White House. Forever changed by what he had seen, James fled to The Netherlands and vowed to always use his powers for good.

The king visited Groningen last week, where he saw demonstrations of sustainable technology in the Grote Markt. Meanwhile, thousands of people drank beers out of disposable plastic cups.

The city prides itself on its sustainability, and it’s just that eco-mindedness that allowed party-goers to reconcile their consciences with using every plastic cup in the North.

‘We told everyone not to worry about it!’ said an organiser. ‘What’s the point of being eco-friendly all the time if you don’t get to let loose once in a while? It’s like a cheat day on a diet.’

And let loose they did. Groningers are estimated to have drunk more than two million beers during the celebration. Each conveniently served in an individual plastic cup.

The Grind Begins Again

‘Alright everyone, it’s been fun, but if we want to do this again next year we have to go back to the usual,’ organizers reminded the city after the Kingsday celebrations came to a close, ‘sorting our trash and turning off the lights when we leave the room and whatnot.’

It’s a high price to pay, but as people walked home over roads paved with rubbish they knew it was worth it.

‘It’s just like the king said: “Other cities talk about throwing a party, Groningen actually does it”,’ said a satisfied and slightly drunk reveler. ‘I’ve kept the thermostat turned down for the past three weeks so I’d be able to sleep tonight. It was hard, but it’s liberating to be able to throw stuff on the ground without feeling bad.’

No one’s really sure what will become of all that trash, but the city would certainly like everyone to think they recycled it.

Homeless Students’ Hopes Dashed

Abandoned as an infant high in the mountains of Colorado, James was taken in and raised by a family of marmots. They trained him in the art of satire, but warned him: ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ He didn’t understand the truth of their words until his adopted rodent brother, Donald Trump’s hair, turned to the dark side.

James could only sit by and watch, helpless and appalled, as his evil brother meme’d his way to the White House. Forever changed by what he had seen, James fled to The Netherlands and vowed to always use his powers for good.

‘We were starting to lose hope,’ said one student. ‘The only light we’d had in the darkness was last month when Vindicat offered to let students sleep in their treasure vault. When that just turned out to be them trying to make us fight each other for money it was starting to feel like people weren’t taking this issue seriously. Then the tent started going up and we thought someone finally cared.’

Students’ spirits were rekindled prematurely, however, as the massive, cozy-looking tent being erected in the Grote Markt turned out to be for a music festival.

‘We were devastated,’ said another student.

Preliminary estimates place the amount of money spent on the festival right around ‘a lot’, a fact that did not go unnoticed by the city’s population of homeless students.

‘I’m sure they got plenty of sponsorship revenue to offset the costs,’ said Billy Billson, a homeless undergraduate student. ‘But why couldn’t they have sponsored a dorm? Like, put some ads up in the windows or something.’

Feeling dejected, students organised a protest during the festival. Unfortunately the protest was mistaken for a mosh pit, and the students’ voices were drowned out by drunken revelers joining in.

Police stop Pursuit

Abandoned as an infant high in the mountains of Colorado, James was taken in and raised by a family of marmots. They trained him in the art of satire, but warned him: ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ He didn’t understand the truth of their words until his adopted rodent brother, Donald Trump’s hair, turned to the dark side.

James could only sit by and watch, helpless and appalled, as his evil brother meme’d his way to the White House. Forever changed by what he had seen, James fled to The Netherlands and vowed to always use his powers for good.

‘It was really fortunate that the suspect called to tell us he didn’t do it’, said the police chief, who issued the order to call off the search this past Wednesday. ‘(It) saved us a lot of trouble. Most of the time we have to actually catch them and have a trial to figure out if they’re innocent or not.’

The former suspect, who was seen by multiple people stabbing shoppers outside Albert Heijn last year was reportedly aghast to discover that the police had been looking for him.

‘It was horrible to find out that they thought I’d stabbed all those people’, said the former suspect while showing Ukrant reporters his large collection of knives. ‘Really I was doing, uh, other stuff. Definitely not that.’

The former suspect, who coincidentally donated a large sum of money to the police department a few months ago, said that the entire issue was just a big misunderstanding. While the police thought that he had used a knife to stab multiple people on the street, what actually happened was that he used a medium sized metal implement to randomize a small area on the bodies of several organisms whilst they went about their daily routines.

‘It’s completely different’, said the police chief. ‘Obviously.’

Several detectives disagreed, however, and were fired for creating a hostile work environment.

‘The guy clearly stabbed those people’, said one of the detectives. ‘We even have it on video. I’m astounded that all it took was a phone call for the chief to call off the search.’

There is no News

Abandoned as an infant high in the mountains of Colorado, James was taken in and raised by a family of marmots. They trained him in the art of satire, but warned him: ‘With great power comes great responsibility.’ He didn’t understand the truth of their words until his adopted rodent brother, Donald Trump’s hair, turned to the dark side.

James could only sit by and watch, helpless and appalled, as his evil brother meme’d his way to the White House. Forever changed by what he had seen, James fled to The Netherlands and vowed to always use his powers for good.

Everything in the Netherlands seems flat in comparison to the ongoing literal dumpster fire that is the United States

The recent indictment of Paul Manafort and Rick Gates has left a local columnist feeling like nothing in the Netherlands is interesting any more. It isn’t run by an orange man-baby, upper level government employees probably aren’t involved in any massive money laundering operations, and there aren’t even any mass shootings.

‘It’s so boring’, lamented the columnist. ‘At least there was that weirdo Geert that I could make fun of, but really he’s just a budget Alex Jones or Sean Hannity.’

The columnist has reportedly used humor as an emotional defense mechanism for most of his life, and now, here in the Netherlands there’s nothing to defend against. There may be a madman running his country, but that’s on the other side of the Atlantic ocean. He wakes up every morning feeling comforted by the knowledge that the leaders of the Netherlands don’t think that climate change is a hoax invented by the Chinese (Trump actually said this).

Americans still without power in the devastated Puerto Rico can take comfort in the fact that the overcooked roast of a president that abandoned them may at any moment drop dead of a heart attack because he hasn’t exercised since college. He actually believes that the human body is like a battery and when you run out of energy you die.

How is a certain local columnist supposed to make fun of anything here in boring old Groningen when things like that are actually. Really. Happening. FOR. REAL. IN. THE. US? TRUMP JUST SAID TO THE JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER THAT HE ‘DIDN’T KNOW THERE WERE SO MANY COUNTRIES’. aaaAAAHHHHH!

Ahem.

In other news, Ben Feringa, who is the biggest deal ever, just did something to do with chemistry, and did you hear that he won a Nobel prize last year? Geert Wilders, Moroccans, homeless international students living in tents, deep fried food, censorship, Yantai, Yantai, Yantai.

 

UPDATE

Every day, the editorial staff at the UK wonders: What are we writing about, why are we writing about it, and how are we writing about it? A weekly look behind the scenes.

Last Thursday, the UK reported that the RUG had spent a total of 700,000 euros on the preparations for the much debated branch campus in Yantai, China. This article had to be updated only a few hours later or, rather, substantially corrected.

Upon closer inspection, the 700,000 euros turned out to only have been for this year, and not for 2015 (when the plans for Yantai were launched), 2016, and 2017 combined. Altogether, the preparation costs come to more than two million euros, more than twice the amount the university had estimated and announced earlier.

So how did this somewhat messy piece of reporting come about? It started with a rather unclear message from the Board of Directors at a University Council meeting, in response to a question about how much the RUG had spent on the preparations for Yantai.

While many (ourselves including) understood the stated figure to be the total amount, it was only later clarified that it only pertained to this year. And so the original article had to be overhauled.

It’s one of the advantages of online journalism. When the UK was still a printed newspaper – how long ago it seems – readers had to wait a week for updates, clarifications and/or corrections (no one is infallible, neither us nor our sources). But now we can implement changes with a snap of our fingers.

But we feel it’s important to be clear about it when we make these changes. So when it happens, and hopefully it won’t happen often, we indicate that in our articles with [UPDATE]. We don’t do that with any odd spelling mistake or a badly written sentence, but only when a substantial change has been made.

Speaking of Yantai: the UK is joining a large RUG delegation on a visit to China. Depending on the time available (which might be difficult due to the full schedule), I will be reporting from Yantai, or at least immediately after my return. Preferably without an [UPDATE].

Rob Siebelink, editor-in-chief

Higher education voted green

If it was up to voters from the Dutch universities of applied sciences and research universities, D66 and GroenLinks would have more than half the seats in the Lower House.
By Rob Siebelink / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen

Combined, the big three parties on the right (VVD – The People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy; PVV -The Freedom Party; and the CDA – Christian Democratic Appeal) received no more than 24 per cent of the vote, according to a survey done by the Erasmus Magazine for the Erasmus University in Rotterdam.

During the Lower House elections on 15 March, nearly every university of applied sciences and research university had at least one polling station. Because these locations were mainly used by students and university employees, they show a pretty clear picture of higher education’s political landscape.

A quick study of the election results at nine research universities and three universities of applied sciences shows that D66 (Democrats ‘66) and GroenLinks (GreenLeft) received most of the votes by far (31 and 25 per cent, respectively). Altogether, that would have amounted to 84 seats in the Lower House.

Worse

The conservative parties did a lot worse among university voters: they would have had no more than 38 seats based on votes cast at institutions of higher education. The VVD is fairly far behind with just 17 per cent, while the CDA (5), PVV (2), Forum for Democracy (2) and SGP (Reformed Political Party, 0.3) played no significant role. The socialists were not very popular either, as the Labour Party (4 per cent) and the Socialist Party (3) experienced.

There were also noticeable differences between the research universities and the universities of applied sciences. D66 and GroenLinks did better at research universities than in universities of applied sciences, whereas the VVD, SP, CDA, PVV, and especially Denk received fewer votes.

Feringa in Yantai?

According to Chinese media, the RUG’s Nobel Prize-winning professor Ben Feringa will take the lead at the university’s applied chemistry programme in China. But Feringa himself says that the article is putting words in his mouth.
By Traci White

When approached by the UK for a response to the article, professor Feringa summarily dismissed it.

‘Much to my surprise, I read in a Chinese publication that “as a professor at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, Professor Feringa will lead the construction of the Department of Applied Chemistry, one of the first four undergraduate programs at the University of Groningen in Yantai”‘, he says.

‘I think it’s rather odd that someone would quote me as saying something I never said’, Feringa asserts. ‘I was asked by one person about Yantai, and all that I said was that the University of Groningen was planning to open a campus in Yantai’, Feringa says. ‘I am not involved in the plans in any way, so I didn’t say anything about it. It’s utter nonsense.’

‘No official opinion’

The chemistry bachelor is currently included on the list of RUG programmes that should eventually be offered in China, but Feringa says that he personally has no ‘official opinion’ on the university’s plans for a branch campus in Asia.

The claim that the professor would be involved in the Yantai campus comes from an article published on the website of the Qilu Evening News, an evening paper based in the province of Shandong, which is where the city of Yantai is located.

Although Feringa has yet to make any public remarks about working on the campus in China, one of his fellow Nobel chemistry laureates – Fraser Stoddard – has been a guest professor at Tianjin University where he has developed a lab for molecular synthesis research.

Heavy-hitting delegation in discussions with Yantai

China Agricultural University (CAU) in Yantai hosts the Groningen delegation. Here are the photos from the working visit.
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RUG president Sibrand Poppema (left) and spokesperson Gernant Deekens.

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Photo’s: CAU

Ben Feringa wins Tetrahedron prize

RUG professor Ben Feringa has won the 2016 Tetrahedron prize. His ‘extraordinary contributions’ to the field of organic chemistry netted him a gold medal, a certificate, and a cash prize of 10,000 dollars.
By Tim Bakker / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen

20160912-feringa-inzet

RUG professor in organic chemistry Ben Feringa (65) ‘is honoured’ to win the Tetrahedron prize.

Its full name is the 2016 Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry, and it has been awarded every year since 1980 by the editors of Tetrahedron, a scientific magazine published by Elsevier. In winning this prize, Feringa, who is famed for his discovery of the molecular motor, joins a select group of scientists at prestigious universities such as Cambridge and Stanford.

Tetrahedron editor-in-chief professor Stephen Martin praises Feringa for his groundbreaking research in the various fields of dynamic molecular systems, catalyses and stereochemistry, and their influence on the field of synthetic organic chemistry and the development of nanomachines.

Feringa feels honoured – ‘not just personally, but also for my team of excellent young students and employees that I’ve worked with over the years and who are responsible for many of the discoveries made in our laboratories.’