HZ University of Applied Sciences and Dow Benelux B.V. extend and strengthen collaboration until 2029

art students look at paint samples at the Dow Exposure station

Terneuzen, the Netherlands - July 4, 2024 – HZ University of Applied Sciences (HZ) and Dow Benelux B.V. (Dow Terneuzen) have extended and further expanded their existing collaboration, focusing on research and knowledge development. During a signing ceremony, the 2019 collaboration agreement was officially extended for an additional 5 years.

Since 2019, the collaboration has resulted in numerous projects, internships, the hiring of 46 HZ students by Dow and has also paved the way for future collaborations. These include Zeeland’s role in the energy transition and research related to culture and leadership. Within Dow, students, faculty, and researchers can explore diverse research fields such as chemistry, water management, logistics, supply chain, HR, research and development, and more.

The partnership between HZ and Dow is of great importance to both parties. HZ seeks authentic cases to enrich education, while joint research groups address urgent societal issues in the region. Simultaneously, Dow benefits by attracting talented (international) students and involving them in projects and research.

Since 2019, HZ students and researchers have collaborated on over 20 Dow projects and studies. The studies were a mix of both long-term investigations spanning multiple years and shorter-term projects for internships and thesis assignments. Key themes included:

  • Water Management: This includes assessing the availability of freshwater in the region (essential for industry, farmers, and residents), developing ideas for rainwater separation at the Dow site, and conducting analyses related to water pollution.
  • Chemistry: Tasks aligned with Dow’s sustainability goals, including research and development projects focused on circularity and plastics recycling.
  • Hydrogen Developments: Recently, in collaboration with industry partners, HZ and Scalda a hydrogen lab was set-up. Here, Dow students, faculty, and professionals receive training in green hydrogen technologies.
  • Other research areas around more sustainable logistics, leadership, and culture.

Dow employees regularly provide guest lectures at HZ and actively participate in thesis projects.

Looking ahead, both parties intend to continue collaborating on projects, including hydrogen utilization in the energy transition, sustainable logistics and fuels, research on digitization, and exploring the potential of artificial intelligence (AI). Additionally, enhance international cooperation and create a diverse, inclusive environment.

Tabita Verburg, Dow Area President for the Benelux, France, Spain, Portugal, United Kingdom, and Nordics regions, said: “Collaborating with educational institutions like HZ is of great importance to Dow. In the Netherlands, we have several partnerships with colleges and universities. Engaging talented students significantly enhances our projects and research. Furthermore, this collaboration allows Dow to continue positioning itself as one of the largest employers in the region for future personnel. For students, it represents a valuable opportunity to gain practical experience at Dow and contribute to our sustainability goals. Speaking from personal experience, I myself began my journey at Dow as an intern. I am very proud of our collaboration and the talent we have recruited from HZ.”

Barbara Oomen, Chair of the Executive Board of HZ University of Applied Sciences: “At HZ, all our education and research starts with practical questions. Educating from a practical perspective requires structural collaborations, such as our relationship with Dow. Numerous student internships and collaborative projects have resulted from this, leading to rewarding careers for many students. We also share the goal of working toward a more sustainable Zeeland. Dow, particularly, can make a significant contribution to this, and our students and colleagues are driven by that ambition. Continuing this collaboration in the coming years is truly rewarding.”

art students look at paint samples at the Dow Exposure station