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Pro-Vice-Chancellor Mackie to leave Sussex to take up new post

The Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Teaching and Learning, Professor Clare Mackie, will shortly leave Sussex to take up a new post at Birmingham City University.

Clare started at Sussex in June 2010 and is a member of the University’s Executive Group.

In the seven years that she has been at Sussex, she has been a staunch advocate of the institution’s widening participation drive.

In 2011, working with academic and professional services colleagues, Clare proposed a new initiative to the University’s Council. The initiative, called the ‘First Generation Scholars’ scheme, was designed to encourage more students from disadvantaged backgrounds, or those who would be the first in their families to go to university, to come to Sussex.

Launched in 2012, it now provides financial and pastoral support to around 40% of students at Sussex who qualify for the scheme. In the five years since its inception, the scheme has produced excellent results, with large numbers of students graduating with a good degree (either a first or 2:1) and strong results for students gaining graduate-level employment or going on to undertake further studies within six months of graduating.

Clare has been one of the leaders in the institution who has worked to significantly improve the employability chances of our students through investment in undergraduate internships, summer schools and research placements at home and overseas.

Commenting on Clare’s departure, Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell said: “I would like to thank Clare for her hard work and dedication to the University.

“Clare was one of the main architects of our successful ‘First Generation Scholars’ programme and has shown a huge commitment to ensuring that students of all walks of life can benefit from a Sussex education.

“On behalf of the leadership team and the University, I wish Clare the very best in her new ventures.”

Clare will be joining Birmingham City University as the Deputy Vice-Chancellor. As Birmingham City have a new Vice-Chancellor and do not have anyone leading on education, Clare will be informally assisting her new institution from 1 October. As such, Clare will be standing down from her executive duties at Sussex from the beginning of October to avoid any conflicts of interest. During the period until Christmas, when she will leave Sussex, she will work to ensure an orderly handover.

The Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Planning and Resources, Stephen Shute, will chair some of Clare’s committees, while Chief Operating Officer Tim Westlake and new Deputy Vice-Chancellor Saul Becker will temporarily take on some of the strategic aspects of her current role.

The University will be announcing plans to replace Clare in due course.

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Posted on behalf of: University of Sussex
Last updated: Wednesday, 13 September 2017