Susan te Pasis will be the new Dean of University College Utrecht. Photo UU

Susan te Pas appointed as new Dean of University College Utrecht

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The Executive Board of Utrecht University has appointed Susan te Pas as the new Dean of University College Utrecht, with effect from 1 January 2021. She will be succeeding James Kennedy.

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Susan te Pas is currently Professor of Cognitive Psychology of Higher Education at Utrecht University. She has a keen interest in educational management. In 2011, she became a Teaching Fellow to promote the quality of education in her faculty. Later, she served as Vice Dean of Undergraduate and Graduate Education at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences. She is one of the research leaders of the focus area Higher Education Research, which concentrates on innovation in higher education.

In 2019 she was appointed as a member of the Education Council of the Netherlands, a national council for education that gives solicited and unsolicited advice to the government and the Houses of Parliament. Since September, she is also a member of the Supervisory Board of school group Nuovo, a foundation for public secondary education in the municipality of Utrecht.

Reorganisation UCU
Pas is familiar with the UCU. Between March and August, she served as Interim Education Director there, as well as taking part in the reorganisation team.

The decision to reorganise was announced last year after a remarkably critical report recognising that UCU’s pioneering position has been under pressure for quite some time. The competition with other broad, English-language programmes, as well as other university colleges, is becoming more and more fierce. To keep its status as innovative educational testing ground, UCU must build a stronger synergy with the UU faculties, the report concluded.

The document also said that the small organisation is too inward-looking, suffering from a visible dichotomy between the UCU staff and the contracted UU teachers. In her new role, Te Pas will be tasked with implementing the proposed reorganisation, which aims to give UCU a stronger role in educational innovation.

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