Aleid Barmentlo will serve as the new Chair of the University Council. The Philosophy student will succeed Prof. Kees van Paridon, who is leaving the Council after holding its Presidency for two years.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Council voted for its new Chair. There were four candidates for the position. The three others were all members of staff. Barmentlo received the majority of votes in the first round of voting.

The 22-year-old student is not exactly a stranger to the Council; she was a student member representing the Faculty of Philosophy last year. She is ‘very happy’ with her appointment. “I want to make sure the University Council performs to the best of its ability. I think I have a pretty good idea of how the university works. I completed a Bachelor’s degree, obviously, and I also served as a teaching assistant at the faculty and with Marketing and Communications.”

In her capacity as the Chair, she mainly wishes to ‘disseminate the Council’s opinion’ and apply herself to proper compliance with rules and procedures. “I’m not here to contribute new ideas,” says Barmentlo.

Not unprecedented

The student’s appointment to the Presidency is not unprecedented. Before Van Paridon, the Council was presided over by René Karens, a Public Administration student.

Kees van Paridon is not the only member of the Council who is leaving. Sabiha El Ghafour, a member of staff, is also leaving the Council, after serving as its registrar for four years. She is succeeded by Merel Barendregt.