from December 11, 2023 to December 31, 2023
Published on December 21, 2023 Updated on February 5, 2024

EUTOPIA strengthens the Central Office with the arrival of Melinda Szabo and Ilenia Sutto

Brussels, January 2024 - The new year will see further developments for the EUTOPIA alliance as the core project EUTOPIA MORE enters its second year, the EUTOPIA TRAIN SwafS project has ended, and the EUTOPIA_HEALTH project starts. These evolutions coincide with the strengthening of EUTOPIA’s Central Office Secretariat in Brussels, which welcomes two new professionals, with Melinda Szabo taking on the pivotal role of Deputy Secretary-General, complemented by the strategic appointment of Ilenia Sutto as Central Office Administrator.  

Melinda Szabo 

Based in Brussels, Melinda Szabo assumes the position of Deputy Secretary-General, bringing a wealth of experience and strategic insight. 

Melinda has previously served as Deputy Director at EQAR —European Quality Assurance Register— and as a consultant at the German Centre for Research on Higher Education and Science Studies (DZHW) and for the Executive Agency for Higher Education, Research, Development, and Innovation Fund. Her career encompasses roles at the European Parliament and the European Students’ Union. Earlier, Melinda worked for the Bologna Follow-Up Group under the aegis of the Romanian Ministry of Education. She holds a Master’s in Educational Management from Babeș-Bolyai University.

In her new capacity, Melinda, who speaks Romanian, English, French and Hungarian, will advise and support Secretary-General Mattia Bellotti in harmonising the alliance’s multiple projects funded by the European Commission, including flagship projects such as EUTOPIA MORE, EUTOPIA SIF, EUTOPIA_HEALTH, FLECSLAB, and contributing to ensuring connections, synergies and coherence of initiatives across projects.

Ilenia Sutto

Ilenia Sutto, assuming the role of Central Office Administrator, brings a creative perspective to the team. With a Master’s Degree in Languages and Economic and Legal Institutions of  Asia and Mediterranean Africa from Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Ilenia boasts six years of experience as the International Relations and Partnerships Coordinator at the International University of Rabat, Morocco, one of the Global Partners of EUTOPIA.

Fluent in Italian, English, French, Arabic and Spanish, Ilenia’s appointment aligns with EUTOPIA’s commitment to fostering intercultural understanding. Her expertise lies in planning and coordination, developing partnerships, and managing Erasmus+ projects, which will prove valuable in sustaining the Central Office’s missions and the work of the Secretary-General and the Deputy Secretary-General.

These two recruitments substantially strengthen EUTOPIA’s Central Office, which plays a pivotal role in the management and coordination of the activities of the alliance across projects and institutions, support to governance, and engagement with the European Union, other alliances, and external stakeholders. 

"EUTOPIA is an alliance of universities that decided to join forces in a unique transformative process for their students, researchers, academics, and staff. Strengthening the alliance’s Central Office is a step towards ensuring the required level of support to universities in achieving their ambitions and towards sustainable, strategic development of the alliance” states Secretary-General Mattia Bellotti.  

The expansion of the Central Office complements the decision taken by the member universities to give the alliance legal status as an international non-profit association under Belgian law, an important milestone that symbolises the unity and shared commitment of EUTOPIA’s member universities in advancing their cooperation. 

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EUTOPIA European University Alliance brings together ten European universities aiming to become, by 2030, an open, multicultural, confederated operation of connected campuses. EUTOPIA is among the 20 projects twice awarded funding by the European Commission (2019 & 2022) to create a deeper level of cooperation between universities.
EUTOPIA stands for: Academic freedom in search of truth; Excellence as a purpose of our teaching, research and innovation models; Sustainable, responsible and ethical attitudes towards the planet; Cooperation and openness.

EUTOPIA means 300,000 students, 45,500 staff, 23,700 academics, 874 research units and 139 faculties in ten European countries.

EUTOPIA: 10 European universities and 4 Global Partners
  • Babeș-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania
  • Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium
  • Ca'Foscari University of Venice, Italy
  • CY Cergy Paris Université, France
  • Technische Universität Dresden, Germany
  • University of Gothenburg, Sweden
  • University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • NOVA University Lisbon, Portugal
  • Pompeu Fabra University-Barcelona, Spain
  • The University of Warwick, United Kingdom
  • Monash University, Australia
  • International University of Rabat, Morocco
  • Stellenbosch University, South Africa
  • Kyungpook National University, South Korea