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Support the astronomers of the future

Scholarship programmes contribute to talent development and remove barriers for students with limited resources. One such programme is ASPIRE, the summer school of the Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy. Here, promising physics and astronomy students from all over the world gain important research experience. Will you support the astronomers of the future?

Additional funds required: €30,000

Will you make it possible?

Many students dream of a career in academia. Research experience is crucial to securing a PhD position, but not all students have this opportunity. Despite their talent and motivation, some students have less chance of a future in science because of their socio-economic or cultural background. Students who live or study in a country where research opportunities are scarce are often at a disadvantage. With ASPIRE, the renowned Anton Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy wants to change this.

Students in the star dome of the API (photo: Wilbert van Woensel)

A sense of community and belonging

The university benefits from a wide diversity of researchers, whose unique personalities, backgrounds, cultures and talents enhance our progress in science. For this reason, the Anton Pannekoek Institute founded ASPIRE: the Astrophysics Summer Program for International Research Experience. With ASPIRE, young researchers can gain research experience, regardless of their socio-economic position or background. By supporting the Annual Fund, you can help make the summer school possible.

Christian Ginski, postdoctoral researcher at the Anton Pannekoek Institute, is a mentor for ASPIRE participants. ‘I love to see how the students grow during the project. I find this really rewarding,' he says. ‘ASPIRE is important to me, because it helps students to overcome biases and barriers in science. Increasing diversity in our field is not only good for science, but also for society.

‘Increasing diversity in our field is not only good for science, but also for society'.
Ziggy Pleunis (photo: Jorn van Eck)

Former participant Vivian Adhiambo Otieno from Kenya also stresses the value of the summer school. ‘The best thing about ASPIRE is the sense of community and togetherness,' she explains. 'When you are working on the project, you feel that you are not alone.' Thanks to the scholarship, she did not have to worry about the costs of her flight and visa, so she could fully focus on the study programme. After ASPIRE, Vivian followed a Research Master’s programme at the University of Leeds and she is now doing a PhD at Delft University of Technology and the University of Amsterdam.

The Anton Pannekoek Institute wants to help students with their academic career, regardless of their background or financial situation. With your support, ambitious physics and astronomy students can achieve their academic dreams. Will you help?