CANVAS: Higher Education Spring 2017 - page 7

CANVAS
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how this Bill and this negotiation will increase
employment opportunities for our graduates?
Far from the UK not producing enough
highly-skilled UK graduates, the reality is we
produce graduates of outstanding abilities
ready to join the UK economy. This is not just
a business issue, it’s a graduate issue.
IN YOUR OPINION WHAT CAN, AND
ARE, INSTITUTIONS AND THEIR
MEMBER BODIES/REPRESENTATIVE
ORGANISATIONS DOING TO ADDRESS
THESE CONCERNS?
My colleagues in HE
institutions have formed Brexit working
parties, and already are considering the
different elements and scenarios – a
complicated process but one that is being
tackled directly. Integrity and intelligence will
lead this forward, and collaborating with each
other, with government, the treasury, BEIS
and industry will be essential. A sector as old
as ours is ready to prevail.
DOES BREXIT PRESENT OPPORTUNITIES
FOR THE HE SECTOR TO WORK MORE
CLOSELY WITH OTHER SECTORS, PUBLIC
AND PRIVATE, IN THE UK AND BEYOND?
Brexit will challenge Higher Education.
Certain institutions will see opportunities. For
example, those with overseas campuses can
pursue certain strategies that others will not.
However, I feel great personal sadness that
the relationships that have been built up
with European colleagues over the years
will change. During my time as Pro-Vice-
Chancellor, negotiations with India, the US
and China were all premised on their interest
in access to not only Cambridge research, but
the European market.
Ultimately the role of a university is to be
valued by its community, regionally and
nationally. If you travel to areas in a country
or region where there are no universities,
confidence, hope and purpose are cauterised.
Yet going back to what I said earlier, that
dynamic of an independent entity, founded
not on profit, but human progress, that
concept is essential to communicate. The
university of tomorrow will not thrive if
it’s seen as a closed entity addressing its
customers’ needs yet separate from its
community. I think we will see, with the LEPs,
City Deals and devolution, an opportunity for
universities to establish deeper roots in their
communities.
The UK has some of the very best Higher
Education institutions and people in the
world; the next decades depend on it.
“The UK has some of the very best
Higher Education institutions and
people in the world; the next decades
depend on it.”
DR JENNIFER BARNES
BIOGRAPHY
Jennifer has held senior leadership
roles in higher education, business
and the arts. From 2010-15,
she was Pro-Vice-Chancellor,
International Strategy and Deputy
Vice-Chancellor at the University of
Cambridge and President of Murray
Edwards College (2008-2012). Prior
to that, she was BP’s first Global
Director of Education, building
partnerships with governments,
universities and industry.
Originally from the US and a
graduate of Smith College, she
moved to the UK and trained as an
opera singer. She holds a MMus
from the Royal College of Music, a
PhD from the University of London
and an Honorary Fellowship from
Trinity Laban conservatoire of music
and dance.
Her focus has been integration and
she has a track record in building
new partnerships across academic
disciplines and international
collaborations involving several
sectors. She continues to bring this
perspective to organisations.
Jennifer joined Saxton Bampfylde in
2016.
GET IN TOUCH
WITH JENNIFER
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