Spotlight on: Academic Service

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Veerle Deckmyn

The Academic Service oversees the selection, admission and reception of researchers, fellows and professors and provides academic and practical support during their stay at the EUI.

This month Veerle Deckmyn takes over as Director of the Academic Service after 10 years as Director of the EUI’s library.

“I am confident I can bring new ideas about services for academics and contribute to rethinking the doctoral programme, which is a top priority for the EUI,” says Deckmyn.

“The doctoral programme needs to correspond to the changing needs and expectations of the research community and be competitive, innovative, and attractive for future researchers, fellows and professors.”

Along with Professor Joseph Weiler, the Dean of Studies and the individual academic departments, Deckmyn is hoping to strengthen the dialogue between doctoral researchers, post-doctoral fellows, and the research community of the Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, allowing each to profit from the others’ attributes: “This is the real competitive advantage of the EUI. Where else do you find only doctoral and post-doctoral researchers working together in an international environment?” asks Deckmyn. “We need to make that more visible.”

In the meantime changes to the welcome programme will enable the September 2014 cohort to begin their research work as soon as they arrive:  “I would like to include presentations on skills and tools researchers need and expect when they arrive and start on such an important new project.”

Also coming under the umbrella of the Academic Service are the Language Services and Counselling and Wellbeing Service, a full list of whose services can be found on their website. “I think it is especially important in this environment to offer people the chance to improve their writing skills and to learn other languages,” says Deckmyn.

“We need to focus on giving our researchers the skills they need so that they are more competitive on the job market. These are primarily academic skills but also include language and soft skills”