After a childhood in Sofia, New York and Brussels, destiny led to us moving to Wallonia (Nivelles) in 1999. The kindness, openness, sense of humour and humanity of the Walloons, together with the natural beauty of the region, have led to Wallonia gradually becoming close to my heart.
After studying at the Athénée Royal in Nivelles and the Université Catholique in Leuven, several periods spent abroad have allowed me to proudly observe the excellent image we enjoy among the international community. Walloons are perceived as kind, open-minded, accessible and having the ability to laugh at themselves.
We have an excellent higher education system that is recognised internationally and accessible to as many people as possible; this means that our universities, colleges and research centres produce our principal raw material – brain cells. Fortunately, this is an inexhaustible resource if we continue to support and invest in innovation, infrastructure and opening up our higher education establishments internationally.
In this respect, I am working in close collaboration with all my colleagues to promote the scientific excellence of Wallonia and build bridges with the scientific communities of other countries, particularly Switzerland. In this small country, similar to Belgium in many ways, we can easily and proudly note the high number of Walloon professors and researchers helping to strengthen the projection of our region through their contacts and work on a daily basis.