TU/e - Technische Universiteit Eindhoven

02/01/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/01/2024 04:59

‘I want to be the eyes and ears for TU/e’

We're really looking forward to forming a team.
University Secretary Eric van der Geer-Rutten-Rijswijk

"I am connecting, diplomatic and good at keeping calm," says Van der Geer, when asked to describe himself. "I have a heart for the academic world and a great drive for change, always looking for how we can do things even better. At the same time, I can also be the raft that people can cling to. If you stay close together and do it together, people embrace the courage to go through these processes of change. I hope to offer that stability and peace of mind."

Director of General Affairs

At our university, the secretary is also the director of General Affairs (GA). This division shapes TU/e's strategy, links goals and activities to it, and also monitors it. "I look forward to immersing myself in this and putting General Affairs well into its role. In doing so, I hope to constantly be able to make the connection on the basis of the content, also with the other services and departments. This requires having an overview, in which the primary processes serve as a compass and the strategy sets the course. It helps to shift your perspective regularly, from outside to inside and to put yourself in the shoes of the users."

On February 1 GA gets underway in the latest round of SQUAD, the self-assessment program for all TU/e services, together with the Communication Expertise Center (CEC), ESA and the Research Support Office (RSO).


"This is going to be a very interesting round," Van der Geer predicts enthusiastically. "We're going to do it with the services involved as one team, because we're convinced that's what the university needs."

"I am proud of TU/e, its excellent education, leading research and its role in the Brainport ecosystem and beyond. That requires a decisive organization and I hope TU/e takes the opportunity to seek each other out even more and intensify collaborations, across walls and barriers while clearly allocating responsibilities."

"Of course, a university has to be organized in a certain way, but frankly what belongs to which service is not the primary concern for teachers or staff. They want to be helped and supported. That's why we look at domains, rather than separate services. These are Education, Research & Valorization and Strategy, Branding and Governance. From those domains, we explore from the user perspective how we can improve the integral services at our university and initiate a long-term quality cycle."

Open invitation

Above all, Van der Geer hopes people will come through his open door and connect with him. "I want to be the eyes and ears of our organization. So feel free to walk into my office, or send me an email or app. That way we can take all the signals into account in the decision-making process. In doing so, I like to seek cooperation, including with the employee participation body. I believe in doing things together. It's about coordinating processes, creating support and involving people. As secretary, you have the ultimate role in establishing such a culture."