Uni.lu rector won’t seek second term

Stéphane Pallage, pictured during a 2018 interview Photo: Mike Zenari

Stéphane Pallage, pictured during a 2018 interview Photo: Mike Zenari

The University of Luxembourg’s rector, Stéphane Pallage, won’t be seeking a second term in office, the institution said in a statement on Tuesday.

Pallage joined the university in 2018 and will be staying in Luxembourg until the end of his five-year term. The board of governors “has initiated first steps to recruit the next rector of the University of Luxembourg to take up office on 1 January 2023,” the statement said.

“Professor Pallage has invoked the circumstances caused by the covid-19 pandemic which makes his family situation very difficult, for which the board expresses its full understanding,” the university said further.

The rector moved to Luxembourg from Canada where he had been dean of the School of Management at the University of Quebec in Montreal from 2013 to 2017. But he grew up in Malmedy, Belgium, and his family was from the Arlon area.

“The Luxembourg language is familiar music to my ears,” Pallage said during his first press conference after taking up his post in January 2018.

He replaced Rainer Klump, from Germany, who picked up the top post in 2015 but left only two years into his mandate in 2017 amid a crisis that unveiled a €27 million gap in the institution’s budget. Klump had overseen the university’s move to its Belval campus.

Interim rector Ludwig Neyses in the wake of Klump’s departure spoke of a “management and organisation crisis”.

The University of Luxembourg was founded in 2003 and has since grown as a research and higher education institution, with more than 6,700 students enrolled. It most recently opened its first medical degrees to students.

It ranked 20th worldwide in the Times Higher Education Young University Rankings 2021, which lists the best universities that are 50 years or younger.

The rector is supported by two vice-rectors--for academic affairs and research--and a director of administration and finance.