On Friday evening, 10 January we received the terribly sad and completely unexpected news that our director Frans van Leijden had passed away at the age of just 57 years.
For almost 30 years, Frans has worked with incredible energy and passion at HAS University of Applied Sciences. We will never forget his enormous commitment to HAS University of Applied Sciences, to his colleagues and to the students. The enthusiasm with which he founded our site in Venlo was tremendous, as are his achievements in this role. As director of Hans University of Applied Sciences in Venlo, Frans successfully implemented many new developments. Frans had a practical, pragmatic approach for our university of applied sciences. This is reflected in the numerous relationships he established with companies, in particular for HAS Venlo. With this same enthusiasm and pragmatism, Frans had just started in his new role as Director of New Business Development. With Frans we have lost a passionate and innovative colleague, someone with the true HAS spirit in everything he did.
We extend our deepest sympathy to his wife, Yvonne and their children, Cas and Hannah. And we send our condolences to the rest of the family, friends, acquaintances and colleagues at this unexpected and tragic loss.
In honour of Frans’ work for HAS University of Applied Sciences and in reflection of his own life, the Board of Governors has decided to set up an award in his memory. Beginning this academic year, the Frans van Leijden Award will be presented to a HAS student who distinguishes themselves by their courage, ingenuity, entrepreneurship and pioneering spirit: the characteristics that typified Frans so well. We hope that the Frans van Leijden Award will be a lasting source of inspiration for both employees and students of HAS University of Applied Sciences.