The ErasmusX team consists of various experts who play at the intersection of education and innovation. Together, we aim to transform the educational landscape by creating impact in different arenas of education for the future of Erasmus University Rotterdam.
Driven by a mission to help students develop themselves in the best way possible, our Core Team has the natural curiosity and critical mind to solve exactly those problems that others may deem impossible!
My name is Vanessa Abel, Programme Director of ErasmusX, I foster the culture of innovation at ErasmusX by encouraging team members to think outside the box and challenge conventional norms. Also, my collaborative leadership style and managerial skills are aimed at building high-performing teams and cultivate a culture of continuous improvement.
A solution that brings originality, more result and a meaningful difference for the one on the receiving end (value creation and impact).
I love to spot planes and collect miniature airplanes, I make a mean lasagna and I want a dog (but I don’t have the time).
My laptop and phone and the Matrix.
Family, friends, relax and read.
It will (aspire to) be an education system that emphasizes holistic learning, cultivates lifelong learning, stimulating students' critical thinking and creativity while leveraging technology to personalize education, making it more accessible, inclusive, tailored to ‘individual’ needs and prepares individuals to navigate a world that is ever changing.
Let’s start with a good conversation………
My name is Simeon van Eijl and I’m 32 years old. The project I am currently working on is Immersive Tech in Education.
For me innovation means trying out new ways of doing things that we have done differently in the past. It means that by ways of new methods, technologies or ideas we can change how we are doing things and we do not always know if this is for better or worse.
I’m an avid cook. Have also done some restaurant and catering work in the past. I’m a big American Sports fan. Played American Football in college. I have a degree in Action Learning, which is a method of education that focusses on learning by doing.
I love the Amazon series The Peripheral
I love sports, hanging out with friends, play/make music, building my own bikes and many many more things.
The future of education is immersive. I believe that education will be more focused on skills and competencies needed in the ‘real’ world, rather than obtaining all the theoretical knowledge. Education and technology will become more and more intertwined with each other as technology has the chance to enhance educational experiences.
Everything but especially project management, strategic advice, action learning and general small talk.
I’m Pablo Ortiz de Zaldumbide and I am from Colombia. I have recently been transitioning from Innovation Designer to Innovation and Technology manager at ErasmusX. I am currently the project lead of the Ace Yourself and the Game Based Learning projects at ErasmusX.
Innovation is more human than nature driven. It’s the power that humans have to resignify their surroundings, their lives, their relationships, their practices and their beliefs. I believe Innovation happens when the things we thought we once knew as facts are transformed forever in our lives and in our minds. More than the means or the technologies used to make the change, it is the mentality shift itself that officializes the innovation. To innovate you need to be open for the mindshift, to ask more, contemplate different answers and dare to choose the one that will open yet more questions. Innovation is not inherently good or evil. So do no harm to any living organism or community during the innovation exercise and try your best to make innovation bring more benefits than disadvantages to its context.
I worked in a jail as a designer back in Bogota and it has been one of the most impactful projects that I have ever worked on. I founded LATITUD, the Latin American Student Association from TU Delft together with other fellow students in 2016 and it’s still running with lots of frequent professional and community events promoting Latin American cultures in the Netherlands. I am fluent in 4 languages: Spanish is my native language, I learned French during my childhood since I went to a French school, I learned English in the French school (so if I wouldn’t get it, I would get the explanation in French) and I ended up learning Dutch while in the Netherlands (Faking it, until I made it to the C1 level a “heel netjes taalgebruik”)
As a game designer and a big role playing games fan, I got totally mindblown when I played Disco Elysium. It felt like a totally different experience, and a way more human experience than any other game I have played before. I believe the storytelling is revolutionary and gives life to many inner struggles that every human being handles on a regular basis. It portrays a future where we are in constant dialogue with our thoughts and emotions in social situations… It sounds simple but we’re far behind on THAT technology.
I play videogames, watch movies, draw A LOT of doodles with my fineliners whether it being for work or for recreation and I make cool geometric cardboard/polypropylene masks. I go for once a week along the Rotte river, I do some bouldering with friends (I am into it for the social aspect, I am not going to lie) and I meet with Spanish speaking friends every now and then to travel back home without moving. I also spend a lot of time with my wife and I keep in touch with my family.
I believe that most lessons come from beyond the classroom. We learn through interacting with our online and offline environments, from interacting with others as students, teachers, employees, teammates, heroes or anti-heroes. There is an infinity of interactions that can help us grow and it is up to us to explore. The future of education is interactive!
Come to me if you want to explore ways to make a mind shift towards innovation in your life. On a more practical basis, come to me for matters related with design thinking, service design, game design, education technologies, UX/UI design, project management, creativity as a skill, videogames, movies and dogs.
My name is Milan and I work on the ChatGPT project with Jonathan.
I see it as looking at things from multiple perspectives and making new connections.
I have lived on three continents and have completed degrees in three different languages. I love opera. That’s three.
Used to be books. Now it’s probably movies.
Cook & bake.
Not too far from where it is now, I’m afraid. Higher ed moves more slowly than we would like it to.
Brainstorm and chat, especially if it’s about teaching, learning, or just life.
My name is Manya. I am a visual designer, a marketeer, and the Communications Manager at ErasmusX.
Innovation is not just about seeing things differently but having the courage to stand out and challenge the status quo. That is how you push the human race forward.
I have a love for poetry, jazz, and fashion. I am a neurodiversity advocate. I dream of living in Spain someday.
The ending of Severance still has me on the edge
I love hanging out with my closest friends, going to fashion and art events, reading and writing poetry, and travelling to new places.
The future of education is inclusive. It should be more accessible, diverse, and less competitive. Schools and universities should have multiple ways of teaching a subject.
I am your girl for anything design. Give me a quote, presentation, or story and I will visualize it for you. I’m a creative thinker who loves to think outside the box!
I’m Macarena Lara and I’m the Research Manager of the team. I work on the Ace Yourself and MyESL projects.
Innovation is applying creativity to come up with original alternatives or ideas that could help solve relevant issues for society.
I lived through a strong earthquake. I have been paragliding. I love milk chocolate (but not with sea salt).
I love Ted Lasso, it’s not futuristic but somehow it is innovative because it combines light comedy with deep life messages to highlight how empathy is key in our society.
I love music, dance, yoga, biking, and art in general.
Education will be more accessible, flexible, diverse, and dynamic around the world by taking advantage of new technologies, curiosity and unpredictable scenarios.
A conversation to brainstorm about research ideas, field work challenges and methods to help you answer your research questions.
I’m Karim and I lead the communications team. We work across ErasmusX to ensure that every project gets the spotlight it deserves!
innovation to me is letting the story in your heart run wild. every day, we are surrounded by elements that can inspire us to change our lives in limitless ways all you have to do is let that in. So, to me, innovation is being brave enough to take the pen and write your own story. We all have the ability to change the world within us we just need to know what that change means for us
I'm a huge Musical Theater fan I'm A big homebody. most people Wouldn't think so because of how sociable I am but often all I need is an ice movie and a night in I wrote my thesis on the representation of surveillance in Pretty Little Liars so I'm a big Pop Culture nerd
I'd have to say Nosedive, the Black Mirror episode. Those rankings were really creepy and felt a little too close to home. Could you imagine a world where our worth is being defined by how well people rank us? I couldn't live there.
Outside of work, I love to hang out with my friends and try new restaurants I'm a huge foodie. So, if you ever need rest for my recommendations in Rotterdam I'm your guy. I'm also really big on meditation and mindfulness and like to find a balance between having lots of fun and taking time to reflect and connect with yourself to create meaningful change not only within yourself.
The future of education to me is empowered. I believe in an educational system that empowers our students to create meaningful change and facilitate innovation and fresh energy into our established systems. I hope that by facilitating projects and industry involvement Erasmus University Rotterdam can set an example for the industries our students are graduating into!
You can come to me for all media-related inquiries, any ideas you have on storytelling, just a fun idea you want to explore, and initiatives people need to know about! I'm always ready to be a sparing partner and am happy to see how we can bring people together to make your vision a reality!
I’m Julia Margaret Picazo (Jules) and I’m currently working on the online student community (sub project of the student community) and Immersive Tech!
Innovation is about developing pragmatic but creative solutions for existing problems.
I write and produce music. I lived in Dubai for 13 years. I am a comic book collector.
I am currently following this AI art gallery called prompt forum on Instagram. I recommend it but I must warn the viewers that there is some nightmare fuel content in there, so view it at your own risk!
I really like doing yoga, I find that it’s a nice way to wake your body up and be energized for the whole day. I also love karaoke, It’s pure catharsis! And mostly hanging out with friends.
In 5 years’, time, education will look different. Classroom cultures will be introduced, and it will be kind, accommodating, self-aware but also challenging. Curriculums will be updated and flexible for the students who want to learn about something else. And critical thinking will no longer be measured through archaic assessments but through actual simulations of contexts that require critical thinking. Institutions will design their education in a way whereby technology will be an assistant, but not the sole driver for learning. And in the same vein, institutions will be ready to implement new technologies to their processes in a way where the students are at the center of everything.
You can come to me for all things student related. What do they want? What makes them tick? But full disclosure I’m no expert and I’m more than happy to spar ideas with you.
My name is Jonathan and I'm involved in the ChatGPT and Student Community project.
It's the constant longing for progress, because we can always do better.
Born and raised in Rotterdam, but parents are from Spain Coffee lover I like playing video games
Play games, watch football and basketball, and go to Feyenoord games.
Technology will probably play an increasingly prominent role.
A chat about anything, while enjoying a good cup of coffee.
Hi, I am the Operations and Business Manager at ErasmusX, which has a role in driving the success of an organization or unit in our case.
To me, innovation represents the process of introducing new and creative ideas, approaches, methods, products, or solutions that bring about positive change and improvement. It involves challenging the status quo, pushing boundaries, and embracing a mindset of continuous improvement and exploration. Innovation is not limited to technological advancements; it can also encompass novel strategies.
I am an accredited fitness instructor. I am a strong believer of life-long learning. I also have an interest in financial markets.
I like to help my community stay mentally and physically fit, volunteer work, and ride my motorcycle.
Education will likely be transformed by technological advancements and evolving pedagogical approaches. Students will have increased access to a wide range of digital resources, interactive simulations, and virtual reality environments that enhance engagement and understanding. I believe that the role of the educator will evolve into that of a facilitator and mentor.
You can come to me for a wide spectrum of questions, operations or not. We can always find an answer or solution!
My name is Frieda Franke and I’m Business Developer. Currently, I lead the Redefining the Classroom project which is situated in the so-called HefHouse.
Innovation is creating something different or new which increases the experience of the thing you are innovating.
I’m quite competitive when it comes to playing physical games I think I’m good at. I have a motorbike driving license. I don’t get why people take a car when they can easily take the bike.
I like being in nature and exercising. I run frequently in any kind of weather. I took up tennis two years ago. I do yoga. I go everywhere on my bike.
The future of education is community-oriented. I hope students in the future will be given opportunities to experience transdisciplinary and experiential learning while co-creating in groups on real-life issues.
Connections, I like to create mutually beneficial relationships. I make the transition from plan to action, I get things done.
I’m Daria and I’m a Researcher who works on the Ace Yourself project.
Innovation is a curiosity to find a way to solve a big challenge and a courage to think and do in a way that others have not done yet. “There are many things that seem impossible only so long as one does not attempt them” — André Gide.
I skydived from 10 km. I was raised by a space test-pilot. I was once licked by a cheetah.
I love painting, contemporary embroidery, jogging with my dog, music festivals, nurd talks, and family trips! Most of all I like reading with a beautiful view.
I hope that educational system will become more diverse to be able to adjust to different students and goals.
I can help you with academic research, educational design, and creative methodology CRAFT.
ErasmusX Students are in charge of our student community. They represent student interests, identify student challenges, and work alongside ErasmusX to tackle pressing issues affecting students at Erasmus University Rotterdam.