HKA under new leadership

On March 1, 2024, Prof. Dr. Rose Marie Beck started her 8-year term of office as the new President of Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences (HKA). Elected in the first round of voting by an overwhelming majority of both the University Council and Senate, she is the first female leader in the history of the institution that was first established in 1878 as the “Grand Duchy College of Building” and became a university of applied sciences of the German federal state of Baden-Württemberg in 1971.

Rose Marie Beck was born in 1964 in Lucerne, Switzerland. She attended the Ecole des Langues et Civilisations Françaises at the University of Geneva before going on to study African Studies, German Studies and Education at the University of Cologne, where her “Magister Artium” degree was followed by a doctorate in African Studies. Her habilitation in African Linguistics was completed at the Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main. Her last position before being appointed as HKA President was Professor and Dean of the Faculty of History, Art and Regional Studies at the University of Leipzig, where in 2019 she was also elected spokesperson for the Deans of the university’s 14 faculties.

Prof. Beck has been involved in leading positions in numerous international research projects, currently, for example, in the “Global Hub” research building to prepare for excellence with the “New Global Dynamics” research focus at Leipzig University with a volume of 34 million euros, as well as in the “Recalibrating African Studies (RecAf)” project with three African partner universities in the Volkswagen Foundation’s “World Knowledge” funding program. She gives great importance to promoting young researchers and has supervised numerous habilitation and doctoral projects as well as student theses.

Given her academic background, her ample experience with transnational projects and just as importantly her linguistic knowledge and skills, it comes as no surprise that Prof. Beck gives great importance to the internationalization of higher education. She has assumed responsibility for HKA’s international affairs herself and will also be representing the university on the INGENIUM Alliance Council. Prof. Beck is convinced that the INGENIUM European Campus that, under the leadership of HKA, is currently being established as the core project of INGENIUM, will afford numerous opportunities for international interaction and exchange to all HKA members and in the process transform the university into a transnational and truly European institution.