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Prof Danie Vermeulen appointed as dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences
2016-03-18

Description: Prof Danie Vermeulen Tags: Prof Danie Vermeulen

As the new dean of the UFS Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, Prof Danie Vermeulen is resolute to place this faculty on the world map.
Photo: Anja Aucamp

The Council of the University of the Free State (UFS) approved the appointment of Prof Danie Vermeulen as dean of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences during its meeting on 11 March 2016.

“Prof Vermeulen brings to the position of dean a set of formidable research and leadership achievements and a track-record of commitment to equity and diversity in the sciences," said Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the UFS.

“It is a great honour that was bestowed on me to lead the faculty and it makes me feel very humble," said Prof Vermeulen.

Fifteen years ago, Prof Vermeulen joined the UFS as a researcher and lecturer. From 2007-2009 he filled the role of acting director of the UFS Institute for Groundwater Studies to subsequently be appointed as not only the director of this institute, but also associate Professor in Geohydrology.

As an alumnus, Prof Vermeulen has strong ties to the UFS. He acquired a BSc Honours, MSc, and PhD Cum Laude in Geohydrology here.This pursuit of excellence also transpires in his aspirations for the faculty’s future. “My vision is that the faculty becomes the best in South Africa in various departments – and recognised throughout Africa, especially in the applied sciences. In addition, the faculty will actively interact with world-leading universities, particularly in the hard sciences.”

Prof Vermeulen is a member of the Executive Committee of the Free State branch of the Groundwater Division of South Africa, member of the Executive Council of the International Mine Water Association, as well as council member at the Fossil Fuel Foundation of South Africa. In the past, he has held membership at the International Association of Hydrogeologists, South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions, Ground Water Division of the Geological Society of South Africa, Water Institute of South Africa, FETWATER Groundwater Initiative, and Editorial Board member of the scientific journal, Water SA.

Prof Vermeulen served as the acting dean for six months prior to his appointment. His appointment commences on 1 April 2016 for a period of five year.

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