On the afternoon of Thursday 15 May, His Majesty King Willem-Alexander will officially open the spectacular celebrations for the University of Groningen’s 400th anniversary. ‘We feel extremely honoured that the King will be opening this festive programme in celebration of the RUG400 theme, For Infinity’, says Rector Magnificus Elmer Sterken. During the ceremony, students from the University will serenade the King from the square in front of the Academy building.
The official opening proceedings represent the starting signal for a month of joint celebrations for the city, the region and the North of the Netherlands. Between 15 May and 15 June, Groningen will be submerged in an extensive programme of events revolving around sport, knowledge and culture. The activities are designed to emphasize the University’s strong ties with the region. For example, a photo exhibition about Groningen DNA by photographer and former news reader Sacha de Boer will feature prominently in the city throughout the festive month.
For ten whole days, the Zernike Campus will form the outdoor set of the musical theatre show, For Eternity , a co-production by the University of Groningen and the Noord Nederlands Toneel. In addition, the University is organizing lectures, knowledge cafés, children’s lectures, bike tours and a family day to answer questions sent in by the public during the ‘ 400 days for 400 questions’ campaign.
During the opening ceremony on 15 May, Rector Magnificus Prof. Sterken will present the Ubbo Emmius Medal to Prof. Ulrike Beisiegel, President of the George-August-Universität Göttingen and successful researcher in the field of cardiovascular disease. As ombudswoman of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, Beisiegel has published numerous articles about academic integrity and ethics.
In accordance with academic tradition, the University will also be presenting ten honorary doctorates on Friday 13 June.
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