True to its values and commitments, the Université Libre de Bruxelles more than ever reaffirms its willingness to implement a university-wide policy promoting gender equality, publicising it as widely as possible.

ULB has played a pioneering role in the rise of female academics in Belgium

The first three female students who enrolled in a Belgian university did so at ULB, in 1880. The first female assistant was Polina Mendeléef, in 1924.
The first female professor was Madeleine Dwelshauvers-Gevers, in the Faculty of Law, in 1929; she was also the first woman to become head of faculty, in 1953.

Scientist Lucia de Brouckère was a feminist and an advocate for secularism, and the first woman to teach in a faculty of sciences in Belgium (in 1937).
In 1990, Françoise Thys-Clément became the first female Rector in the French-speaking part of the countryand the only one to this day.

Like in most universities throughout Europe, women make up the majority of ULB's student body, and an even larger majority of graduates of bachelor and master programmes. Women are more represented in certain fields of study than others, with the highest rates in psychology and education and the lowest in engineering.

However, fewer women go on to defend a PhD thesis, and the percentage of women at the highest levels of academic careers, as well as in decision-making bodies, remains comparatively low.

True to its values and commitments, the Université Libre de Bruxelles more than ever reaffirms its willingness to implement a university-wide policy promoting gender equality and publicise it as widely as possible. Its 'Cascade' initiative once again makes ULB a pioneering university in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation.

Updated on March 27, 2019