Professor VandeLinde was our Vice-Chancellor for nine years from 1992 and made an exceptional contribution to the growth and development of the University.
A highly respected academic in his field of electrical engineering, he left his home country of the United States to take up the role of Vice-Chancellor at Bath.
Whilst here, he reorganised the University into three faculties plus a School of Management, a structure which still exists today, and encouraged more cohesive and collaborative working across disciplines.
He invested heavily in the campus, overseeing more than £90 million of construction and renovation, and saw student numbers increase by 40 per cent.
Under his watch, the Library moved to 24-hour opening, and regular reviews of academic departments were introduced to ensure they were delivering as much benefit as possible to both teaching and research.
He also contributed to the development of higher education in the West of England. He built good relationships with other universities in the region and reached local agreements to create a new campus in Swindon, from which to serve much of Wiltshire. He engaged locally with the City of Bath and was keen for the University to be associated with the City.
He held American-style long-service anniversary dinners for all qualifying staff and, alongside his wife Marjorie, marked the achievements of individual students.
As a result of the changes implemented under his lead, Bath‘s reputation grew and the University established itself as a top ten UK institution.
Professor Ian White, Vice-Chancellor, said: “I was very saddened to hear the news of Professor VandeLinde’s passing. The dedication and insight he brought to his role and the impact he made during his time at Bath warrant him a unique position in the history of our University.”
“He was a brilliant scholar who was prepared to drive ground-breaking initiatives, many of which were not only visionary but remain unchanged today, whilst celebrating individuals and enabling them to be their best.”
“In many ways he helped to lay the foundations of the University we are today. It has been a privilege to build on the excellent work that he carried out and I would like to record my enormous gratitude for his contribution and lasting legacy at Bath.”