Lund University welcomes French President Emmanuel Macron at the Studentafton

On January 31st, the Studentafton of Lund University had the honour of welcoming Emmanuel Macron, the President of the French Republic, for a dialogue about the creation of a resilient European Union. Studentafton is Scandinavia’s foremost politically and religiously independent forum for speech and debate and was established in 1905 at Lund University. It is dedicated to upholding the principles of freedom of speech. The student organization, Studentafton, got the opportunity to host President Macron during his two-day State visit to Sweden, with 200 students attending in the audience.



During the event, President Macron addressed a spectrum of challenges and possibilities as well as the future trajectory of European cooperation and whether or not the EU's democratic model can compete with other ideological systems, especially when it comes to innovation and technological development. The President stated that he believes the EU can and will be able to do so going forward.

Accompanying President Macron and his wife Brigitte Macron was Lund University's Vice-Chancellor, Erik Renström. The French Minister for Higher Education and Research, Sylvie Retailleau, also attended the event. Retailleau’s relationship with EUGLOH is quite strong, as she was President of Paris-Saclay University at EUGLOH’s inception. His and Her Majesty King Carl Gustaf XVI and Queen Silvia of Sweden, along with Minister for Foreign Affairs Tobias Billström and Minister for Education Mats Persson, further honoured the university with their presence.

Earlier that same day, the delegation also explored the European Spallation Source (ESS), a multidisciplinary research facility harnessing the world’s most powerful neutron source and collaboratively run by 13 European countries, France being one of them. ESS is an Associated Partner of EUGLOH, due to its potential for uncovering scientific solutions to important Global Health challenges.

To end the visit, a reception was held by the President and First Lady in honour of His and Her Majesty, where, Lara Lüdecke, one of EUGLOH’s student representatives at Lund University, was invited to attend and to mingle with the honourable guests.

This text has been translated and modified from its original version, which was published by Lund University.