Three exceptional honours for Martin Paul during farewell lecture
Ten years after becoming President of Maastricht University, Prof. dr. Martin Paul bid farewell to Maastricht University today in a special lecture. In recognition of his great commitment and service to UM, Martin Paul received no less than three honours including that of Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau. Visibly moved and surprised, Martin Paul received this royal distinction, granted by His Majesty the King, from the Mayor of Maastricht, Annemarie Penn-te Strake.
Prior to receiving the royal honour, Martin Paul was presented with the highest UM award, the Tanspenning, by Nick Bos (Vice-President UM) as well as the Maastricht MUMC+ Award by Helen Mertens (President of the MUMC+ Executive Board).
"Martin Paul is an authoritative university administrator, who used his talents in the service of humanity at the local, national and international level. Society owes him a debt of gratitude. Therefore, he deserves more than local recognition. A gesture of national recognition is appropriate: Martin Paul is now Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau.”
Anne-Marie Penn-te Strake, Mayor of Maastricht
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After his special valedictory lecture, entitled Learning to Lead - a Maastricht Experience, he was praised by Rianne Letschert (Rector UM), Harald Merckelbach (on behalf of the UM deans), Heyo Kroemer (member of the Executive Board of Charité University in Berlin), Nick Bos, Helen Mertens and Mayor Annemarie Penn-te Strake.
“Martin Paul’s knowledge and experience in medicine and the sciences were a perfect match and of great significance for the development of our university in these areas.”
Rianne Letschert, Rector of Maastricht University
“The great legacy of Martin Paul’s presidency is connections - connecting UM with other universities across the globe, with many partner institutions across Europe and with the business community, knowledge institutes and government in our region. The Brightlands campuses are a prime example.”
Nick Bos, Vice-president of Maastricht University
The Fat Lady, a small opera company that was invited by Truze Lodder (former chair of the UM Supervisory Board), provided musical interludes during the event. Mezzo-soprano Veronique van der Meijden, baritone Youngky Eurlings and pianist Tamir Chasson performed works by Martin Paul's favourite composer, Wagner, among others.
“If we want to create a true European ecosystem of universities, we need to address equality and equity in European higher education and move away from being labelled as self-defined elitists. In order to create the future European university landscape, we need to address inequality, not only between old and new member states but also in the student population.”
Martin Paul, President of Maastricht University
On the first of November, Martin Paul will start his new appointment as Rector of Ruhr-Universität in Bochum, Germany. Current UM Rector Rianne Letschert will succeed him as UM Chair of the Executive Board.
Photos Harry Heuts, Philip Driessen (portrait)