On April 1, 1965, in café Onder de Linden in Wageningen, the association Heeren XVII was founded as a study association of the former study Agricultural Engineering.
The purpose of the society was on the one hand to strengthen the mutual bond between the students of Agricultural Engineering and on the other hand to improve the contacts with the professors and the staff. The association owes its name to the fact that during its establishment only men (gentlemen) followed this study. In addition, the study of Agricultural Engineering was at that time the 17th study in Wageningen.
Nowadays Heeren XVII still stands for the same goal as it was founded for in 1965: connecting the mutual students and the business community. Meanwhile Heeren XVII has over 300 members of which half is involved in the association by contributing to the association by participating in committees and activities. With the help of its members, Heeren XVII regularly organizes activities, theme evenings, excursions and company days. In this way everyone gets to know each other and the interesting sector within agriculture and technique. Once every five years the anniversary of Heeren XVII is celebrated by means of a lustrum. Hereby a very varied program of 10 days is set up by the Lustrum committee.
Within the Department of Agricultural Engineering and Physics (split in 2014 into the chair groups of Farm Technology Group and Biomass Refinery and Process Dynamics) one did not know exactly when the former study of Agricultural Engineering was founded. Eventually it was found through the Postal and Archive Service of the Agricultural University (nowadays Wageningen University & Research) that in the program for the academic year 1957-1958 there was for the first time mention of direction XVII, Agricultural Engineering. In it is found that on July 19, 1956, by Royal Decree, among other things, the direction XVII, Agricultural Engineering was included. The professor of Agricultural Engineering at that time was already since 1951 Prof.ir. G. Riemer (died in 1981).
History of the study
In the additions and improvements of the Agricultural College Wageningen Guide 1970-1971, it can be seen that the name "Direction XVII, Agricultural Engineering" was changed to "N-32, Agricultural Engineering". After this, the study went through many more name, code and study duration changes to end, for now, at the current Biosystems Engineering. See the timeline below for a complete overview.