It is with great sadness that we share the news that Dr Jeroen Ensink, Senior Lecturer in Public Health Engineering at the School, died on Tuesday 29 December 2015. At the request of Jeroen’s family and colleagues, we have established the Jeroen Ensink Memorial Fund to support MSc Scholarships for students from sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia to become future leaders in public health.
Jeroen was an internationally renowned water engineer and dedicated humanitarian. He was passionately committed to a simple cause: improving access to water and sanitation in countries where children continue to die needlessly due to the lack of these basic services.
As a researcher and educator, Jeroen’s career crossed many continents. He lived and worked in countries including Pakistan, India, Vietnam, Tanzania and Malawi, and collaborated with numerous universities and international agencies. He devoted particular effort to building local research capacity in developing countries. His own research was rigorous but always practical. He published over 50 scientific papers and, at the time of his death, was leading a large study in the Democratic Republic of Congo to understand how improvements in water supply and other measures could control and prevent cholera outbreaks.
Jeroen was a natural teacher, and immensely popular with students in whom he invested much time and energy. He was Course Director on the School’s Master’s degree in Public Health in Developing Countries. He provided support and inspiration in equal measure and many of his students are now successful researchers and public health professionals in their own right.
The School’s Director Professor Peter Piot said: “This is a terrible tragedy, and our deepest condolences go to his family and friends. Jeroen was a highly valued member of the School community and all of us who knew him will remember him as a warm and committed friend and colleague. He will be hugely missed by all the staff and students who had the opportunity to know and work with him, and it is now up to all of us to ensure that the legacy of his work will continue.”
We have received tributes from his many collaborators, including the Department for International Development, WaterAid, Catholic Relief Services and others. As a further testimony to Jeroen’s scientific contribution, WaterLines, a major journal in this field, will publish a collection of dedicated papers in April and announce an annual prize in his memory.
The School has established the Jeroen Ensink Memorial Fund, which will be used to support MSc scholarships for students from sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Those who would like to make a gift can do so here (US tax payers may contribute to the fund through the American Friends of the School). Alternatively you can make a donation by cheque; cheques should be made payable to the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (please be sure to write “Jeroen Ensink Memorial Fund” in the memo line) and sent to the Development Office, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London WC1E 7HT. If you have any questions about making a gift to the fund, please contact Bill Friar, Head of Development at or on (+44) 20 7299 2630.
All messages for the family may be sent c/o Gemma Donaldson, Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Keppel Street, London WC1E 7HT, or by email at .
Photo courtesy of Nadja Ensink-Teich