Dr. Arzu Umar

Current facets (Pre-Master)

Senior lecturer, Tutor & Co-coordinator

Email address

Office Days: Monday - Friday

Please contact via email to schedule an appointment.


Dr. Arzu Umar was born and raised in Rotterdam and has a Turkish background. She studied Biology (BSc and MSc) at Utrecht University, and is very internationally oriented. During her BSc, she did an Erasmus exchange with Lund University (Sweden). Also, she performed part of her Masters research project at the pharmaceutical company GlaxoWellcome (nowadays GSK) in Stevenage, UK.

Back in the Netherlands, she enrolled in a PhD program at the Medical school of the Erasmus University, from which she obtained her degree in 2003. After that, she worked as a post-doc for 2 years at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington, USA with the aid of a personal fellowship obtained from the Dutch Cancer Society.

After her post-doc, she continued her scientific research at the Erasmus MC Cancer Institute, at the department of Medical Oncology, were she established her own research line on breast cancer and was appointed as assistant professor in 2013. In August 2015, Arzu made a switch to Erasmus University College because she wanted to be more involved in teaching.

Next to her scientific work, Arzu has dedicated herself to the promotion of female career development, because this is still a challenging issue within academia. Besides work, Arzu is very passionate about tango dancing. After having danced as a follower for several years, she would now like to learn how to lead.

Why do you work at EUC?

After having worked in research for 17 years, I wanted to be more actively involved in teaching, particularly in a small scale, interactive environment. Also, I was looking for a place that would really connect to Rotterdam, since I think this is the coolest city in the Netherlands. A former colleague on mine at Erasmus MC introduced me to EUC Life Sciences Head of Department. After a very nice informal meeting I immediately fell in love with EUC and was absolutely determined to get a job as lecturer here, which I thankfully did! I love working at EUC and it really is a pleasure to teach in such an open and international environment in the middle of Rotterdam.

Additional Information


Molecular & Cellular Biology 
Genes, Brains & Society 
Molecular & Clinical Genetics