Dies Natalis

Het cortège verlaat het Academiegebouw tijdens de Dies Natalis
Cortège during Anniversary Day

The Dies Natalis, Utrecht University's Anniversary Day, is celebrated on 26 March: the day in 1636 when the Illustrious School became an academic university.

The Anniversary Day is celebrated in the Dom Church. This annual ceremony always includes the Anniversary Address, the awarding of honorary doctorates, and the awarding of the Teachers Awards. 

Honorary doctorates

Honorary doctorates are the university's way of expressing its appreciation for individuals and their work. Honorary doctors receive a certificate from the University together with a short gown (cappa) in the red and white colours of Utrecht. He or she is then authorised to use the title Doctor honoris causa

Teacher awards

Each year, the Executive Board presents two prestigious awards for lecturers: the Teachers Award and the Young Teacher Talent Award.


Once every five years, the university celebrates a lustrum. Then, there is a special Anniversary Day with festive activities organised by student associations.

Previous Dies Natalis celebrations

An overview of the activities during the Dies Natalis in previous years

  • Upcoming Dies celebration

    • 26 Mar

      389th Dies Natalis

      On 26 March 2025, Utrecht University will celebrate its 389th birthday.