The University of Konstanz has a new rector: Professor Kerstin Krieglstein, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Freiburg, was elected on 3 July 2018 by a strong majority of the Senate and University Council to become the successor of Professor Ulrich Rüdiger (19 out of 30 votes with 2 abstentions in the third ballot). Kerstin Krieglstein will take office on 1 August 2018.
“It is a great honour to be chosen to serve the University of Konstanz as its rector. I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to represent the university in the coming years. I want to be a part of a university rectorate at an institution of higher education that is competitive, vibrant, and driven by excellence in research. The University of Konstanz is this university”, explains Kerstin Krieglstein as she reflects on her decision to apply to the University of Konstanz.
Professor Ute Frevert, head of the University Council and head of the Search Committee, congratulates the new rector of the University of Konstanz: “In order to build on past successes, the University of Konstanz requires a leader with leadership qualities and vision. Kerstin Krieglstein fulfils these expectations to the highest degree. She is an outstanding researcher and a very experienced science manager who will be dedicated to further developing the strengths of the university”.
Appointment of a new rector
The early appointment of a new rector became necessary after the current rector of the University of Konstanz, Professor Ulrich Rüdiger, was elected to become rector of the RWTH Aachen University. A Search Committee headed by Professor Ute Frevert, head of the University Council, was tasked with submitting nominations of suitable candidates for the office of the rector. Following a public call for applications, a total of 21 individuals applied for the position. Six applicants – four women and two men – were invited to interview with the Search Committee. Two candidates were then nominated for election. Both were approved by the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg (MWK). Both introduced themselves during a public consultation on 18 June 2018 that was open to all university members. Today, 3 July 2018, the University Senate and Council elected Kerstin Krieglstein to become the new rector of the University of Konstanz. She will take office on 1 August 2018.
The future of the University of Konstanz
“I see myself as the university’s advocate, not as its custodian”, says Kerstin Krieglstein when describing her leadership style. “It is very important to me that decisions are made after all those involved are consulted. I stand for further developing our university in an interdisciplinary, transparent and open-minded way”.
Kerstin Krieglstein views the opportunities that the Excellence Strategy of the German Federal and State Governments is providing as the key challenge and foremost means to help advance the aims of the University of Konstanz. As her first official act, she plans to announce a meeting to consult with all those persons involved with the university’s cluster initiatives. “The university’s adaptability and its capacity to renew itself is very important to me”, emphasises the new rector. A central concern of hers is therefore the analysis of the reform university's development potential, both in scientific terms and against the background of university funding as well as the demographic development of the country.
About Kerstin Krieglstein
Kerstin Krieglstein has been Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Freiburg since 1 April 2014. She was previously Professor of Anatomy and Chair of the Department of Molecular Embryology as well as Vice-Dean for Structure, Research and Development of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Freiburg. From 2001 to 2007, she was Professor in and Head of the Department of Neuroanatomy in the area of human medicine at the University of Göttingen. Before that she was Associate Professor of Anatomy at Saarland University from 1999 to 2001.
Kerstin Krieglstein studied chemistry and pharmacy at the Phillips-Universität Marburg and the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München from 1982 to 1987. In 1990, she completed her doctoral studies at the Phillips-Universität Marburg before attaining her habilitation (post-doctoral qualification) in the area of anatomy and cell biology at Heidelberg University. She was selected as a Heisenberg Fellow by the German Research Foundation (DFG) in 1998.
For her accomplishments in research and teaching, she was awarded, among others, the Wolfgang Bargmann Prize from the Anatomische Gesellschaft as well as the teaching award for innovative improvements in study programmes with state examinations (Instructional Development Award, IDA). Kerstin Krieglstein is a member of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina and long-standing member in committees of the German Research Foundation (DFG), the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, the Helmholtz Association, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as well as the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts (MWK) Baden-Württemberg (conference of deans).