Universiteit Leiden

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Hester Bijl new Vice-Rector Magnificus of Leiden University

Mathematician Hester Bijl will be appointed Vice-Rector Magnificus and member of the Executive Board of Leiden University with effect from 1 November 2016. She succeeds Simone Buitendijk.

Hester Bijl (1970) is Professor of Aerodynamics at Delft University of Technology. She has been dean of the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering since 2013, where she heads a staff of 450 people, including 20 professors and 200 PhD candidates. The faculty has close to 3,000 bachelor’s and master’s students, 50 per cent of whom come from outside the Netherlands.

Prior to this she was chair of the department of Aerodynamics, Wind Energy and Flight Performance and Propulsion, and chair of the Delft Energy Initiative. Bijl is currently a member of the Supervisory Board of the Energy Research Association of the Netherlands (ECN).

The Board of Governors of Leiden University welcomes the appointment of Hester Bijl, who will be portfolio holder for education. ‘Ms Bijl is a scientist with an excellent reputation and solid management experience. With her skills and vision she will make a valuable contribution to further strengthening our teaching and learning, and to positioning our university as one of the leading universities in Europe and an attractive institution for students and staff,’ chairman Nout Wellink commented.

Rector Magnificus Carel Stolker is delighted with this appointment: ‘It is gratifying that Hester’s nomination was supported unanimously by a selection committee made up of members from highly diverse fields.  Willem te Beest and I are looking forward to working together with Hester as our new colleague in the Executive Board.’

Hester Bijl studied Applied Mathematics at Delft University of Technology, where she also obtained her PhD. She also holds a master’s in English Language and Culture from Leiden University. She has received individual awards (VIDI and ASPASIA) from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) for her research in the area of Computational Fluid Dynamics with applications in aeronautics and wind energy. Hester Bijl was a member of the first cohort of Young Academy professors of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), of which she was also a board member.

From 1 November 2016, the Executive Board will comprise President and Rector Magnificus Professor Carel Stolker, Vice-Rector Professor Hester Bijl and Vice-Chairman Willem te Beest.

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