Testimonial Kevin van der Toorn

The other day, during my second year of the Electrical Engineering bachelor, I was walking in the EEMCS building when I saw a poster asking for students to work on the "Hyperloop". I had heard a bit about this concept before, how it is a new transport system invented by the CEO of the electric car company Tesla and space company SpaceX. How a previous group of students from Delft built one of the very first of those vehicles and became first in an international student competition. I took a photo of the poster and went home.

Something inside we wanted to apply immediately. To experience a year developing a system that can have a huge impact on the world. Yet, as with every big opportunity, there were doubts. I was supposed to finish my degree, how can I afford to stop my study for a full year? And am I good enough to do this? But I immediately realized that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity that I had to take. I will have enough time to finish my degree. And of course, I will be good enough if I do my best. (And if not, there is only one way to find out.)

So I applied, and a few weeks and an interview later I got a phone call telling me that I was part of the new Hyperloop dream team! What followed was a year where I experienced so much, that I cannot summarize it in a few lines of text. (But you can read my other blog posts about it!)

I used the knowledge I attained during my studies in practice and acquired new knowledge, both theoretical and practical skills. I discovered how the different disciplines of engineering, business, and design are interwoven into each other.

But better than all of this, I got to meet and work with an amazing group of people. People that don't judge you for your crazy ideas. People that see problems as challenges. People that don't give up on there (common) goal, even if that means working the entire night. Even if that means suddenly driving to Germany to test a part, or working the entire holiday to reach that deadline.

Now as I am writing this words at a Starbucks in my home town, this amazing year is over and I am studying for my bachelors again. I'm thinking back to that day I saw the poster and asked myself if I should apply. If I knew then what I know now, there wouldn't be any doubt.

- Kevin van der Toorn