The Side Job: Vincent helps organize the TOTY election

'Discovering your passion is possibly the best thing in life and the nominated teachers show that.’
Photo Guy Ackermans

Who: Vincent Latjes
What: student assistant for the Teacher of the Year (TOTY) election
Why: very inspiring because of the exceptional lecturers
Hourly wage: 12.25 euros net

You’ve got to make ends meet somehow. We can all borrow from Uncle Duo, but there are also students who earn money in unusual ways. Like Vincent Latjes (29), a Master’s student of Development and Rural Innovation. He helped organize the Teacher of the Year (TOTY) election. The award ceremony is on Tuesday 20 June.

‘The winner has been picked, but I am not allowed to say who it is yet. Everyone is invited to come to the award ceremony, which is at Impulse next Tuesday 20 June at 16:00. We shall announce the winner then. Students could vote in March. The 10 teachers with the most votes in proportion to the number of students they teach were nominated. The winner is chosen by a seven-member student jury that is very diverse in terms of education, gender and nationality.

With every interview, I felt like we were talking to the winner

The jury interviewed all the nominees. As a student assistant, I helped with the paperwork and practical matters. I recorded the interviews using transcription software. I thought the interviews were really nice and inspiring! These teachers communicate their knowledge with so much passion that you are really eager to learn from them. One of the nominees wears clothes printed with funny things his students have said. Like ‘No (d)rain no g(r)ain’, which came from a PhD student. Another lecturer helps her students plan their activism. She has advised Extinction Rebellion, for example. Meanwhile, another lecturer was working on improving the work culture at WUR. She organizes workshops and meetings to break the taboo on menstruation and the menopause. In every interview, I felt we were talking to the winner. But there can only be one winner.’

‘The teachers’ passion for their job has made me wonder whether I should become a teacher too. I’ve been thinking about what I want to do for quite some time. I ended up where I am now via a Bachelor’s in Events and Communication, a teacher training course for teaching Dutch and a Bachelor’s in Environmental Studies. I think it’s better to explore various things than to plough on with something you have no passion for. Discovering your passion is possibly the best thing in life and the nominated teachers show that.’

Also read:

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to write a comment.