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TU/e Board President Mengelers receives order of chivalry upon his departure

Departing TU/e administrator Jan Mengelers has been honored this afternoon at his farewell festivities with the award of a royal distinction. Mengelers, 66, has been appointed Officer of the Order of Orange-Nassau.

by
photo Bart van Overbeeke

As Mengelers bids farewell this Wednesday afternoon he offers some personal thoughts and inspiration to the university; the well-filled Blauwe Zaal has become the setting for a one-off edition of 'Spring Guests' ('Lentegasten' in Dutch, inspired by the well-known VPRO television program ‘Zomergasten’), in which interviewer Isolde Hallensleben will be in conversation with Mengelers, their interview structured around twelve video fragments chosen by Mengelers. These range from Shakespeare and Dutch comedy duo Van Kooten and De Bie to soccer legend Maradona and science animations produced at TU/e.

Read on below the photos.

Among those invited today is Eindhoven's mayor John Jorritsma - and he had not arrived empty-handed. He pinned to Mengelers' chest the familiar ribbon and cross of the class of Officer of the Order of Orange-Nassau, the civilian order of chivalry. A Royal distinction was also awarded to Mengelers’ former board colleague Jo van Ham when he retired from the university last March.

Ambassador

In the past Mengelers has held various positions, including Chairman of the Board of Management of TNO and, while in that position, President of the European Association of Research and Technology Organisations. In 2014 he became President of the Executive Board of TU/e - a university that experienced strong growth in the subsequent years, during which time, according to the statement accompanying his royal distinction, he ‘remained mindful of staffing policy and the quality of education provision’.

Read on below the photos.

The brand new Officer was also praised for, among other things, his diligence in reinforcing and expanding contacts within the Brainport region: ‘Mr. Mengelers is an ambassador of Eindhoven as an innovative Top Technology region and he devotes his efforts to enabling the university, trade and industry and the government to work better together.’

Other offices held by the outgoing Executive Board President include secretary and treasurer of the Brainport Foundation, President of the universities' federation VSNU, President of the Supervisory Board of the GLOW Foundation and board member of the PSV Soccer Foundation.

Jan Mengelers speaks of "a very emotional and intense day, with a great many impressions. I am bathed in the university's warmth, created by its enthusiastic people who have meant so much to me and who have kept me feeling youthful. And now in addition, through John, I am honored to extend my thanks to the King for this honorable distinction, received for something I have regarded as being so natural. As a simple boy from the region, to be distinguished in this way is a very fine honor."

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