Meet the Team

Rosanne Onstenk

I grew up in a town called Zutphen and it’s already my fifth year here in Wageningen. And although I did several attempts, I did not yet succeed to leave this little town. Things I enjoy the most in life are climbing, hiking in the mountains, and music festivals. When I don’t need to study, I’m working as a waitress in the hotel WICC. My mission for RUW is to bring it back to life and organize events that bring professors and students closer to each other. I believe that professors have many more other interesting things to tell than they have time for in class and that their life story can be a great inspiration for students.

I’m RUW’s treasurer, so my main task is to keep RUW financially healthy and being responsible for the contracts. Besides that, I’m organizing several kind of events. A big event I’m working on now is the impact of collaboration between the university and the industry. You can contact me about any financial related questions. This also applies to if you for instance want to get an idea how I setup a year budget and keep track of the finances. Also, if you have any other questions, good ideas or want to contribute to RUW don’t hesitate to send me a message!

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Jesse Opdam

Life started on farms in the Netherlands, from the clayey soils in the Flevopolder to the sandy soils in Brabant. This skin of the earth has always intrigued me, it provides the foundations of nearly all life on the planet. Most obviously, it is the giver of our food and I love food. When I am not cooking I am thinking about the next recipe. This devotion for land and food has brought me to many unexpected places, from the tropical island Saba, to the semi-arid Altiplano of Spain and the remote Highlands of Scotland. In future work I aim to develop sustainable ways of land management and food production. I would like to do that from the ground up, involving people that are closest to the solutions. That’s where my link with RUW lies, looking critical at current ways of education, research and sustainability.

My interests are broad and I like to be involved in many things. There’s different topics that I would like to bring closer to people. However, my main focus is the Rural University. A new citizen science platform in Wageningen, aiming on sharing knowledge present in the city and the surrounding landscape. Next to that, I represent RUW in the Green Active Network of Wageningen. Contact me if you would like more information about the thinktank of the Rural University. We can always use more creative minds, don’t hesitate to send me an email!

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Clemens Thomas

I am Clemens, 21 and I was born and raised in Austria. My parents are from a village in the mountains and even though I always lived in the city I developed quite a strong bond with nature. Combined with other beautiful coincidences, this is also part of the reason which brought me to Wageningen, knowing that the glaciers in your beloved Alps are melting, just logically makes you an environmentalist. My passion to stand up against injustices made me get involved with several organisations and movements, from the Young Greens in Austria to Extinction Rebellion in the Netherlands. I would describe myself as critical, but open-minded, mostly enthusiastic and eager to learn. Particularly learning from others in informal settings is something I enjoy a lot and I believe RUW is the perfect place for that. In my free time I like to cook & eat, read, climb, visit nature areas, swim in the rhine and spend time with my friends.

At Stichting RUW I coordinate the Critical Activities Platform, which means I organise lectures, debates and other events under the flag of three branches; dialogue, discussion and close reading. Some activities I have been involved with organising so far include a recap event about COP25, a panel discussion on the impact of collaboration and a book club on the infamous Limits to Growth report.

Everybody is welcome to contact me via clemens.joham@wur.nl or ruw@wur.nl with questions concerning previous and upcoming events. Also, if you have an interesting topic you would like to organise an event on, hit me up 🙂

Eric van Bruggen

Eric van Bruggen is an all-round specialist in having opinions. Ask him for an opinion and he will have one. Sometimes he writes down his opinions for the Jester, sometimes he shares them with the RUW team. In general, Eric is a strong believer in the power of science, but if it suits him, he is also not afraid to contradict his own beliefs or to be a hypocrite. Contact him if you have an interest in writing, drawing, or creating any other media for The Jester, WUR’s only student-run critical media outlet: http://www.thejesterwageningen.nl/

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Alyssa Pritts

Having grown up on a small strawberry farm in upstate New York, USA, made Wageningen feel just like home. I have been lucky to find homes among farmers and scientists in different parts of the world for the past 7 years, opening my mind to new ways of thinking about social and environmental challenges. RUW Foundation hopes it fosters a space for people to come together with different perspectives on all types of initiatives and challenges to learn, discuss, and grow with each other.

I am the Chair of the RUW Foundation, so I am responsible for supporting the team and making sure everyone has what they need to succeed in their projects. Please reach out if you have any questions about RUW and would like to understand how you can be involved!