Prof. Jacquelien Scherpen, Director of the Groningen Engineering Center, at the Faculty of Science and Engineering (UG), has been voted Engineer of the Year 2023 by the expert jury. She received the Prince Friso Engineering Award 2023 in the presence of Princess Beatrix. Scherpen was one of three finalists for the award, all of whom were women this year. The announcement and award ceremony hosted by the Royal Institute of Engineers (KIVI) took place 15 March 2023 at Boskalis in Papendrecht.
“It is a wonderful recognition, also of our efforts in Groningen to put engineering on the map,” Scherpen said. “As an engineer you stand at the basis of societal challenges and you tackle those as a team with other disciplines. That is what is special about the UG; we are a broad-based university where you can, for a long time now, also study engineering. I hope this will win over prospective students and in particular, provide extra motivation for women to study engineering and pursue a career in engineering!”
The jury commended Prof. Jacquelien Scherpen for her versatility which she couples with substantive depth. At the University of Groningen, Scherpen is a driving force in strengthening and broadening the research and teaching in the field of engineering. She works closely with businesses and also develops new programmes. The jury: ‘At the same time, she is also committed to the visibility of engineering in general, among other things by inspiring enthusiasm in young people for the engineering profession as well as overcoming gender stereotypes in female engineers. All in all, this makes her a role model for new generations of engineers.’
This was the ninth edition of the Prince Friso Engineering Award, which KIVI awards annually. Engineers who stand out in expertise, innovative capacity, entrepreneurship and social impact are eligible for the award, which is named after Prince Friso, who was an aerospace Engineer and member of KIVI. The winner of the award may call themselves Engineer of the Year. It has never happened before that the finalists only included women. In addition, an audience award, and the KIVI Engineering Student Team Award were also awarded.