Our Fellow of 2023

Koen Pelleriaux

Koen Pelleriaux studied sociology at VUB and obtained his PhD in 2000. He started his career as a sociologist and researcher at VUB, then was professor of sociology at the University of Antwerp. In 2005 he became director of the sp.a. Study Centre and was chef de cabinet for education. In 2014, he became director of Flanders’ Department of Education and in 2020 he joined education network GO!. Since 2021, he has been executive director.

Our Fellow of 2021

Johan Ieven

Johan Ieven is an alumnus of VUB and has been working as a clinical psychologist in foster care. He has been general director of Pleegzorg Vlaams-Brabant & Brussel since 2014. Since 1980 he has worked in a private psychotherapy practice and in various care sectors such as (child) psychiatry, addiction care and special youth care. 

Through him, the faculty hopes to receive additional support in its foster care research and possible guest lectures. VUB is very pleased that Johan Ieven, with his wide network, has become a Fellow.

Our Fellows of 2020

Katrien Verhegge

Katrien Verhegge graduated in pedagogy from KU Leuven. She specialised in multi-problem families and followed a three-year programme in family systems therapy. She worked as a researcher at KU Leuven. The common theme in her training and career has been the welfare of the child. Based on that commitment she started working for Kind & Gezin in 1991, focusing on poverty and psychosocial-pedagogical prevention. 

Since 2019 she has been general administrator at the Opgroeien agency with the mission of giving every child the right to a childhood of opportunities. The agency builds bridges with education, culture and work.

In the past VUB has carried out multiple research assignments for Kind & Gezin. Thanks to this new collaboration, Verhegge will give guest lectures in various modules on education, and the collaboration with Proximus Johan Vanderfaeillie on policy issues is likely to become more intensive.

Jurgen Wayenberg

Jurgen Wayenberg studied at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels and the Hogeschool voor Wetenschappen en Kunst. His passion for art and education are the common theme throughout his career. After a period as a teacher and performing musician, in 1996 he became director of the Hemiksem Academy of Music and Drama. He was simultaneously conductor of VUB’s symphonic orchestra. He lost his heart to Brussels and in 2006 became director of the Kunsthumaniora Brussel. Since May 2018 he has been Managing Director of GO! Scholengroep Brussel.

Wayenberg’s Fellowship strengthens the link between VUB and the GO! schools. This strong collaboration brings research and practice together, allowing VUB to tackle metropolitan challenges in the Brussels-Capital Region. Thanks to his network and expertise, new internships and practical projects for bachelor and master students will be possible. Relevant cultural and educational partners in Brussels will have access to innovation, enhancing opportunities for all young people in Brussels.

Our Honorary Fellows

Many Fellows of the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences become Honorary Fellow of our faculty after a period of time: a token of appreciation for their commitment to helping spread the mission and values of our faculty. 

Erhan Demirci

Erhan Demirci began experimenting with comedy during his study years in Brussels. He made the final of the Culture Comedy Award in 2009 and took the jury prize of the 123 Comedy Award the following year, marking him out as a promising talent on Flanders’ comedy scene. He toured with comedy collective Hakims of Comedy, performing at many cultural centres in Flanders and the Netherlands. In his performances, as the son of a migrant worker, no subject is spared – not least going from a tough life growing up in a Limburg village to the even harder ‘life in the ghetto’ in Brussels. Besides politics and integration, he’s inspired by everyday Belgian life. He also does some radio and TV work.

Chantal Cooreman

Chantal Cooreman obtained a Master’s in Law and a Master after Master degree in Business Administration and Management, both at VUB. She began her career as an adjunct-advisor at the federal economy ministry. Since 2002, she has been part of His Majesty the King’s household in various functions: as advisor, adjunct-head of cabinet, advisor-director of the petitions and social affairs service, and currently as director of the petitions and social affairs service. In addition, she is a member of the advisory board of the King Baudouin Foundation.

Patrick Coulier

For over 30 years, Patrick Coulier has been working in the audio-visual world, specialising in communication, consultancy and event organisation. His own company, acTVty NV, provides communication solutions for small and big corporations and several national and international governments and academia. Patrick Coulier’s role inside acTVty is that of advising and operational coordinator with a special focus on the innovative use of communication strategies and media products, such as the implementation of business channel Kanaal Z / Canal Z and several regional TV stations in Flanders and the Netherlands. Patrick Coulier is also a socially-conscious entrepreneur. He is a renowned member of Voka, the Honorary Board of the VUB, Mug-Heli West-Flanders and Business Centre Brugge.

Johan de Muynck

Johan de Muynck graduated in 1997 at VUB in Agogics ; Erasmus at Bordeaux; and DEC Aménagement du territoire and GAS Culture Management. But overall, he was also monitor and leader in several youth organizations. After having done several freelance jobs; he became advisor-manager of the subventions for social policy at CPAs (OCMW) and manager of the activation program. Afterwards, he did the interim management of a hospital group (2500 beds); was merger of social housing companies and chairman of several organizations. Since 2009, he is CEO at Zorgbedrijf Antwerpen and chairman of Manus and Sense. He is a true manager, but more an entrepreneur in social organizations, combining social services in a business environment.

Sven Gatz

Sven Gatz earned his Bachelor and Master in Law at KU Leuven and studied at the Université Libre de Bruxelles to specialise in administrative law. He started his political career at the Volksunie but transferred to Open VLD. For 10 years, he was a member of the Brussels parliament. For 12 years he was also involved in the Flemish Parliament, of which he was party leader from 2007 to 2011. His areas of expertise are urban policy, integration and migration, education, youth, culture and Brussels. In 2011 he left politics and became the director of Belgian Brewers, before returning as minister of culture, media, youth and Brussels from 2014 to 2019. Currently he is Minister of the Government of the Brussels-Capital Region.

Piet Goddaer

Since David Bowie praised Ozark Henry’s debut album as one of his favourites, the Belgian artist has produced music ranging from avant-garde electronica to pop and a symphonic album with the National Orchestra of Belgium. Ozark Henry’s universe is defined by a blending of craft with experiment, audio with visual, heritage with technology, and TEDx and Google New York invited him to talk about his ground-breaking work in 3D immersive sound. He is also a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador against human trafficking, working with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and local NGOs to raise awareness about this modern-day form of slavery and to support the Blue Heart Campaign and the Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking.

Jacky Goris

Jacky Goris is a VUB alumnus who graduated as Master of Germanic Philology in 1973. He was general director of the public education network GO! in the Brussels school district, acting as an important advocate of the humanistic values of GO! and VUB in the Brussels Capital Region, with a focus on educational equality and quality education for all. He was also very active in connecting VUB and GO! in a strong structural cooperation for Brussels.

Fons Leroy

Fons Leroy is the founder, former chair and current vice-chair of the non-profit organisation Synerjob, the association of Belgian public employment and training services, and a member of the federal government’s High Council for Employment. He was also chair of the European Network of Public Employment Services, and board member of the strategic work group of the World Association of Public Employment Services. Currently he works as Managing Director at Leroy & Zn.

Goedele Liekens

Goedele Liekens is a TV presenter, psychologist and sexologist. She presents TV shows about sex in Flanders, the Netherlands and the UK. As a campaigner for a better sexual experience, she has written various bestsellers that have been published in several languages. For more than 15 years, she has served as a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN’s Population Fund. She calls for better access to sexual and reproductive health, and campaigns on issues including the needs of female refugees, the tragedy of obstetric fistulae and the HIV epidemic. In 2010, she was named a Millennium Development Goal Champion by the UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon. Today she is best known for her work to promote sex education as an essential part of schooling in Flanders and the Netherlands.

Ingrid Lieten

Ingrid Lieten was Vice President of the Flemish Government and Minister responsible for innovation, public investments, media, and poverty reduction. Since 2014 she is a member of the Flemish Parliament. Ingrid Lieten’s commitment to social equality and development was sparked by the bad economic situation that hit her home region of Limburg after its mining industry was shut down. Faced with high unemployment and poverty in the region, she concluded that economic wealth should always be paired with social redistribution, even in highly industrialised countries such as Belgium. In the early 1980s she joined the Flemish social-democratic party. Prior to joining the Flemish Government, Ingrid Lieten dedicated her professional career to the economic reconversion of Limburg and headed Flanders’ public transport company De Lijn. In 2019 she started as director at Verso.

Koen Maertens

Koen Maertens studied clinical psychology at VUB until 2003. Afterwards he was a research assistant. In 2008 he became managing director of Oscare, an organisation that treats burns, offers scar after-care and does related research.

Godelieve Van den Brande

Godelieve Van den Brande graduated as master in educational sciences and master Aggregate Higher Secondary Education at the VUB. After having been a research assistant at the Faculty of Psychology and Education at the VUB from 1980 to 1988, she completed her PHD in the educational sciences at Université de Liège (B) in 1992 while having started at the EC. She is the author of multiple books and she has been visiting lecturer at College of Europe; ULB, Higher Institute of Social Re-adaptation sciences, pedagogical tutor and course developer for the Open University Heerlen, is active member of editorial research journals and boards; and evaluator of multiple research projects and surveys.

Patrick Van Kerckhove

Patrick Van Kerckhove completed the Master’s programme in Economic, Social and Political Sciences & Solvay Business School at VUB in 1987. He has since built up an impressive career at BNP Paribas Fortis. Starting as brand manager in various local departments of the bank, he is now the regional manager of 37 branches in Limburg-Kempen. He is very active in the field of education and has been president of GO! (GemeenschapsOnderwijs) for the past 12 years.

Every faculty of our university has its Fellows and Honorary Fellows, as does the VUB as a whole. All of them are dedicated experts and leaders in their field who help us in creating better links to society and business.

Take a look at all VUB Fellows