Education & Outreach
QuTech Academy: educating the next generations of quantum experts
QuTech’s educational activities are organized in the QuTech Academy. Here we educate students to become top scientists in the quantum field, while also reaching out to society as a whole to inform them about quantum technology. We aim to educate people with all levels of expertise and backgrounds. We are developing platforms to optimally interact with everyone interested in quantum science and technology.
On Campus Education
Minor Quantum Science and Quantum Information
We launched a new minor program in Quantum Science and Quantum Information to introduce students to the field of quantum science and technology. The courses span from quantum theories to their application in quantum technologies. As a pilot run, the program was offered to students from BSc programs of Applied Physics, Electrical Engineering, Applied Mathematics, and Computer Science. We initially limited the number of students to 34, but next year 60 students will have the opportunity to follow the minor. In addition to students coming from TU Delft and Leiden, now also students from other universities and exchange programs can join.
Since 2015, QuTech Academy offers a MSc courses in Quantum Technologies for students from Applied Physics, Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, and Mathematics. The two-year program at TU Delft consists of a set of courses in year 1, followed by an internship and MSc thesis project which can be carried out at QuTech in year 2.
Annotation Quantum Technology
The first quantum technology annotations were awarded to Master students from selected programs at TU Delft. The annotations signify that students followed 20 ECTS credits of compulsory course modules, performed a graduation project focused on quantum technology, and did additional work approved by the coordinator of the annotation.
We awarded the first full QuTech scholarships to five excellent international students, covering their Master studies. Outstanding performances will be rewarded with PhD positions.
QuTech is very active in online education, creating a portfolio of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) available on YouTube and the edX platform. Our courses have run 14 times and received more than 77.000 enrolments (24.705 in 2019). We have built a measurable community, including industry. There is a continuous demand for new content.
We started creating a Quantum Technology portfolio of online programs to connect the Dutch, European, and international community. We want to increase our audience by using this portfolio to target both the academic and business sides at all levels, from beginner to advanced. We envision the material for these programs to find application not just on the edX platform but on other future platforms as well. We will adopt the Professional Certificate Program scheme (1 certificate = at least 2 MOOCs).
Quantum computing for the curious (outreach)
QuTech aims to spark enthusiasm and curiosity for quantum technologies among a wider audience. We are keen to share our fascination of quantum science with anyone, including youth of all ages (specifically primary and high school students), technology enthusiasts, professionals and politicians, and future users.
Our principal investigators are widely recognized in the Netherlands and abroad as thought leaders in the field and thus often asked to contribute their expert view on quantum technology to media productions, companies and institutions. Furthermore, in 2019, QuTech founded QuTech Speakers, a group of young and highly motivated PhD students, engineers, and postdoctoral researchers who provide lectures, lab tours, blogs, and podcasts for a broad audience.
Outreach highlights for 2019 include:
- Scientific Director Ronald Hanson participated in a video tour through our labs.
- Over the summer months, visitors of the Delft town hall risked bumping into a mock-up model of a quantum computer, that was showcased as part of the Techtalk exhibition.
- Quantum technologies featured in several podcasts and radio productions:
- Julia Cramer (Outreach Advisor) and Sophie Hermans (PhD student) gave a lab tour for the podcast Lab Leven
- Ronald Hanson explained quantum technology in BNR’s Big Five
- Sophie Hermans talked about quantum internet for NPO Fcus and De Technloog
- The BBC interviewed Stephanie Wehner (Roadmap Leader Quantum Internet and Networked Computing) about the race to build a quantum computer
- Lieven Vandersypen commented on Google’s quantum supremacy on NPO Radio 1
- QuTech represented the Quantum Internet Alliance (QIA) at the Science is Wonderful exhibition in Brussels. Around 400 visitors from different backgrounds enjoyed a Virtual Reality tour through our optics lab, a custom-made qubit teleportation experiment, and more.
- Nora Fahrenfort (System Engineer) and Julia Cramer educated families about superposition and entanglement at the Weekend van de Wetenschap, the Museum Jeugd Universiteit and Sound of Science.
- Anne-Marije Zwerver (PhD student) discussed quantum technologies with a broad audience at Kennis Café in de Balie and at Brainwash Festival.
- Over a hundred professionals from industry, academia, and (international) governments visited our labs, guided by the QuTech Speakers.
- A TU Delft Vision Team, in collaboration with QuTech, set about exploring the impact of quantum technologies, with a special focus on quantum internet as the first technology that is likely to become reality. The results were published as a Quantum Internet Magazine.
- Together with The Hague Tech we organized QuantumLab consisting of informational sessions and workshops on quantum computing and the future of technology.
- QuTech representatives visited high-schools, companies and government events (including the International Once Conference in The Hague) to discuss quantum technologies and their potential.
- Nine blogs by the QuTech blog team appeared in 2019, discussing everything from new technological developments via political aspects to the everyday life of QuTech researchers.
- In summer we welcomed a VWO6 class, engaging them in performing actual quantum experiments such as a Bell test.