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- Highlights of some past events

A full list can be found here.

KU Leuven Young Alumni get-together

March 5, 2020

On Thursday March 5, young alumni got together at BXL Zoute for an informal drink and chat. Great evening! If you are under 40 and interesting to attend at a future event, please let us know!

A Special evening with Professors Paul Krugman and Paul De Grauwe

Nov 1, 2019

Watch the entire evening here.

Moderated by alumnus Peter Vanham, the evening was a lively discussion between two economics giants, Nobel prize winner Dr. Paul Krugman and our own Dr. Paul De Grauwe. The evening started with a networking reception, a lively gathering of alumni and friends of KU Leuven, including old students of Prof. De Grauwe who had a chance to meet their professor again. 

The formal part of the evening was introduced by Yves Wantens of Flanders House (the location of the event, with a magnificient view of Manhattan and the Empire State Building and a georgous evening sky), followed by a Welcome by KU Leuven Vice-Rector Peter Lievens.

We sincerely thank all members for their contribution to the event and our chapter, with special thanks to our Patron and Board members for the continuous support.

Breakfast with Geert Cauwenbergh

Oct 23, 2019 - Executive, investor, mentor, was our first guest at a new series of events Flanders Investment and Trade organized in cooperation with KU Leuven Alumni US Chapter. Our own Peter Vanham moderated the session - a very interesting and pleasant chat with discussions with the audience (over 30 registered!).

Honorary Rector André Oosterlinck

World Economic Forum, New York

June 7, 2019

We started a new series, Captain of Academia, where we have a chat with a successful academic. Who better to start with than Prof. André Oosterlinck, entrepreneur, rector and professor?

Over 20 alumni joined us in a boardroom style fireside chat led by fellow alumnus Peter Vanham, World Economic Forum. A lively story covered André’s life, his way to the top and lots of anecdotes.

Saving the World Trade Organization

Nov 16, New York

Prof. Jan Wouters, world renowned expert on international law and international organizations gave an insight in the European Union's proposals to save the WTO. His views on global trade and the current political climate drew a lot of attention of our alumni. This event was organized in collaboration with Belcham. 

First alumni event in Philadelphia

Sep 24 - Tir Na Nog, Philadelphia

For the first time, the Chapter organized a get together in the city of Philadelphia. Of course we chose a beer place: Tir Na Nog. This Irish pub bears the same name as a pub that was for a long time at the Ladeuzeplein in Leuven, some of you might still remember. What better place in Philly to start our networking there!

Jan & Utsav (Philadelphia representative)

Alumni Happy Hour - Summer 2018

July 12, 2018, Bryant Park, NY

Alumni Happy Hour at Bryant Park was a blast! It was fantastic to have so many alumni together enjoying a warm summer evening in the heart of Manhattan. Our balloon mascot for the evening was Cookie Monster - the only blue balloon in the store! - and he did a great job at gathering our attendees. After we carved out a space for ourselves in the crowd, everyone was relaxing and connecting over cool summer ales and cocktails. Happy summer to everyone and thank you to all those who came out! 
Internationalization @ KUL

March 9, 2018, New York

Rector Sels, together with 2 of his Vice-rectors, Peter Lievens (Internationalization and Alumni) and Piet Desmet (Education Technology), and Prof. Jan Wouters (International Law specialist) visited the US Eastcoast to build bridges for KU Leuven in the USA.

Nearly 50 alumni joined in a lively discussion on the position of KU Leuven on the international scene, and its strategy for the coming years, followed by an informal networking reception.


Visit of Leuven Mindgate

October 18, 2017

Visit of Leuven Mindgate to New York en Boston! Headed by H.E. Lodewijk De Witte, Governor of Vlaams-Brabant, Mohamed Ridouani, Deputy-mayor of Leuven, and accompanied by executives of KU Leuven, IMEC, UZ Leuven and local companies. 
Our first event in Washington DC: MIT meets KUL

September 13, 2017

Residence of the Belgian Ambassador, Washington, DC

A first outreach to our alumni friends was organized on Sep 13 in one of the most beautiful places of DC, the Belgian Ambassador's residence. The event was organized jointly with MIT Alumni DC, thanks to Dr. Eric Burger, alumnus of both Leuven and MIT.

We had a full house, with over 100 attendees enjoying stories on Belgium and tasting some good beers!


Leuven Library Project Dinner

June 14, 2017

Harvard Club, New York

More than 75 alumni and friends of Leuven attended, including Rector Torfs, Herman Van Rompuy, executive chef Bart Vandaele and Margaret Hoover, great-granddaughter of president Hoover.


Center stage was a debate on the global and European economy between Herman Van Rompuy and Jeffrey Sachs


Fireside chat with Alberto Vitale and Peter Vanham

Feb 7, 2017

Flanders House, New York

The 1st event of 2017 was a full house: a chat between alumnus Peter Vanham, author of "Before I was CEO" and Alberto Vitale, ex-CEO of publishing company Random House attracted nearly 80 people.

The event was organized by the Leuven Alumni Chapter, Fulbright NY and One To World. The event was also the kick-off for 2017, with a toast to a happy and healthy year. All participants received Peter's book.


Book presentation "De Race naar het Witte Huis"

Author Bart Deelen
October 20, 2016

Flanders House hosted a book written by Leuven Alumnus Bart Deelen, long-time DC-er on the Presidential Elections in the past 5 campaigns. 

Delegation of KU Leuven, headed by Rector Rik Torfs, hosted a panel discussion on the topic of Utopia, then and now

September 14, 2016

On the occasion of a top visit of KU Leuven, with Rector Rik Torfs and Museum M curator Professor Jan Van der Stock, a panel discussion was organized to exchange visions and ideas on the application of Thomas More's book Utopia, printed exactly 500 years ago in Leuven by Dirk Martens.

The panel was excellent:
Rector Rik Torfs
Marianne Ammsoms, VP Global Communications of AbInbev
Jeffrey Sachs, Columbia Professor and renowned economist
Howard Gutman, former US Ambassador to Belgium
Peter Vanham, World Economic Forum, Moderator

The event took place at the prestigious Yale Club's Tap Room and had 145 registrants, of which more than 100 attended. 

The Utopia event was also the kickstart of a project to restore and expand the University Library. This building was destroyed in 1914 during WW1 and rebuilt thanks to over 300 US colleges and institutions. See also Knack


Exclusive Guided Tour to Van Dyck, Frick Collection

May 18, 2016

The Frick collection hosts a unique exhibition on one Flanders' most famous master painters, Anthony Van Dyck (1599-1641).

Thanks to Flanders House, a limited group of KU Leuven Alumni (patrons and supporting members) and our colleague Ghent alumni, could visit the exhibition under the guidance of a curator.

Consul-General Marc Calcoen was so gracious to offer a drink afterwards in his residence on Fifth Avenue.







KUL Science, Technology and Engineering Delegation

April 6, 2016

On April 6, a delegation of our University visited the USA to explore potential cooperation with a selected list of American universities. Starting at the Westcoast, they made their way through to New York.

Headed by the vice-rector of Group Science, Technology and Engineering, accompanied by the respective Deans and Vice-deans, the delegation met with Alumni based in the Tri-State Area and friends from the Stevens Institute, Cornell, Columbia and more. 

A lively debate on the "Education and the innovation economy: how to train our next-generation knowledge workers" was organized, with the Deans, Prof. Wouter Dessein from Columbia University and moderated by Peter Vanham, World Economic Forum, both Alumni.

It was a full house, with over 50 attendees enjoying (more than 1) Belgian beer and friendly discussions.  


Celebrating of a famous Leuven Alumnus: George Lemaitre

March 15, Washington DC

On the occasion of George Lemaitre's death in 1966, Belgian Ambassador Johan Verbeke hosted a seminar on George Lemaitre's pioneering work on the Big Bang Theory. 
Keynote was Dr. John Mather, Nobel Laureate and Sr. Scientist at NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, the successor to Hubble to be launched in 2018.

The audience drew Leuven Alumni in DC, who could network with scientists, policy makers and business people from the Nation's capital.

Location was the amazing Ambassador's Residence, one of the most beautiful residences in the DC area.

New Year's Reception at the Flanders House

January 19, 2016

To celebrate the New Year Belgian style, we organized a gathering of our alumni in New York City with drinks and snacks. An ideal way to stay connected through the year.

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