Both the victim and the alleged perpetrator are taking an International Bachelor’s degree in Communication and Media (IBCoM). They are both Vietnamese nationals. Dao said the perpetrator used to be a ‘good friend’ of hers, who touched her while she slept in January 2017. He apparently apologised to her later in an e-mail, and promised that he would quit the degree programme of his own accord.

Reported to the police

However, he was still enrolled in the degree the next year. Dao then sought help from the study advisors, who referred her to the Dean of the Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication (ESHCC). According to Dao, the Dean told her that all the university could do for her was ensure that she would never be in the same group as the alleged perpetrator while attending seminars, and that the best thing for her to do was to report the incident to the police. She did so in February 2018. The case is still pending. It will probably take another six months for a judge to hear the case, by which time both Dao and the suspect will have completed their degrees at EUR.


Since the IBCoM programme features mandatory lectures this term that must be attended by all students, Dao is currently forced to spend time in the same lecture theatres as the man who assaulted her. Since it will still take a long time for her case to be judged, Dao is asking the university to implement measures effective immediately, so that she will no longer have to face her assaulter. A petition might help her convince the university to honour her request.

A university spokesperson doesn’t want to go into the matter in substance, but does say to ‘always put the safety of our students first’. “We have taken note of the petition of an IBCoM student. However, we do not make any statements about individuals and the nature of this case, in the interest of the privacy of those involved and because the matter already lies with the police and the Openbaar Ministerie (district attorney). We would, however, like to emphasize that this matter has always received our full attention.” ESHCC was unable to comment on the story.

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