University of Padua elects female rector for first time in 800 years

Jun 27, 2021 206

The University of Padua has elected Daniela Mapelli as its new rector, the first woman to hold the top post at the institution since it was founded in 1222. Mapelli, a professor of psychology, begins her six-year term on 1 October, just in time for the university's 800th anniversary next year.

A native of Lecco in northern Italy, the 55-year-old Mapelli saw off competition for the rectorate from another woman, law professor Patrizia Marzaro. Making reference to the rows of portraits of past rectors - eight centuries of male faces - Mapelli said: "From next October we will finally be able to say 'men and women who led the University of Padua.'"

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