Avans is one of the larger universities of applied sciences in the Netherlands, offering more than 60 degree courses to 33,000 students - and employing 2,800 staff. Across 14 sites in Breda, ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Roosendaal and Tilburg, the University is known for its commitment to quality. In Keuzegids Hbo 2020, which assesses and compares the quality of higher education in the Netherlands every year, Avans was nominated the best applied sciences university in the Netherlands.
Sustainable, the new normal
However, excellence in education is not the only thing high on the Avans agenda. Sustainability is also a key priority. The University believes its students are the future and will play a major role in the transition to a more sustainable society. Avans is there to guide them. In fact, sustainable development is a constant thread running through the University’s teaching, research activities and, of course, its working and learning environment. This ambition is also expressed in practical terms, including in the campus facilities. All buildings, for example, have to be at least energy neutral by 2030.
“This will be quite a challenge for a university with a huge variety of buildings in different locations,” admits Sebastian van Velthoven, the University’s contract manager and energy coordinator. “Among other things, we’re investing in renewable energy, with solar panels on every rooftop, and we’re drawing up energy saving plans for all our locations to systematically reduce consumption.