Van Bergen Fund Competition 2015!

Have you got a creative idea for how to improve the contacts between Dutch and international students? Present your plan and you could win up to 5,000 euros to put it into action.

5,000 euros for your idea

Of the 23,000 students at Leiden University, more than 2,000 come from abroad. These students – who are studying in Leiden or in The Hague – represent some 110 different nationalities. How can they all be brought together? If you can come up with a good plan to get them together, you could win up to 5,000 euros to put your plan into action.

The prize will be awarded to the group or organisation that submits the most innovative plan. The idea is to use the prize to put the winning plan into practice.

Who can submit an idea?

  • international and Dutch students 
  • PhD candidates
  • lecturers
  • professors
  • support and management staff at the University 
  • students and study associations 
  • combinations of groups and organisations


You need to submit your idea before 14 October.

To get you started

What kind of ideas can you submit?   

  • Activities centred around lectures or tutorials that international students take part in
  • Ways to ensure that new international students can take part in cultural or sporting activities (such as a choir, an orchestra, a band, a small ensemble, a dance group or a sports club)

See what previous winners have done (in Dutch).

Competition rules

Read about the criteria and guidelines for plans that are submitted. (In Dutch)


The jury comprises students and staff of Leiden University. The members of the jury will assess the plans on the above criteria.

Announcement of the winner

The best submissions will be nominated. A few of the nominees will present their initiative at the diversity symposium on 5 November. The jury will announce the winner on that day.

We are interested to hear about your plan. You can upload it in PDF format via this registration form.

About the Van Bergen Fund

Joris van Bergen, the initiator of the fund.

Joris van Bergen, the initiator of the fund.

The prize is offered by the Van Bergen Fund. This fund was set up in 2005, on the retirement of Joris van Bergen, former Vice-President of the Executive Board. The aim of the Van Bergen Fund is to encourage contacts between Dutch and international students.

Many international students take an exchange programme in the Netherlands or come here to do their master’s. In the time that they are here they are keen to meet Dutch students and to get to know Dutch people and Dutch culture. For Dutch students this is a good opportunity to learn about other cultures and to broaden their world view. Most of them will ultimately be working in an international environment.

Bringing Dutch and international students together is one aspect of the University’s policy of promoting the internationalisation of the academic community.

(3 September 2015)

Last Modified: 13-10-2015