The UVAC Board comprises experts in higher level vocational learning drawn from higher and further education. As such, the UVAC Board possesses a wealth of knowledge and experience on higher level, work-based and vocational learning. Click on the links below to find to more about our Board.
- Professor Quintin McKellar (Chair) – Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive, University of Hertfordshire
- Professor Margaret House – Vice Chancellor, Leeds Trinity University
- Dr Ruth Helyer – Head of Skills, Teesside University
- Professor Jane Longmore – Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Southampton Solent University
- Mrs Debi Hayes – Deputy Provost, Greenwich School of Management
- Professor Jonathan Garnett, Senior Research Adviser, Australian Institute of Business
- Dr Darryll Bravenboer, Head of Academic Development, Institute for Work Based Learning, Middlesex University
- Ms Rosy Crehan, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic), Staffordshire University
- Mr Conor Moss, Director of Education and Employer Partnerships, Sheffield Hallam University
Professor Quintin McKellar CBE - Chair
Vice Chancellor, University of Hertfordshire
Professor McKellar has been the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of the University of Hertfordshire since 2011. He graduated from Glasgow University Veterinary School in 1981, and went on to gain a PhD in Veterinary Parasitology in 1984. In August 1997 Professor McKellar took up the post of Scientific Director of the Moredun Research Institute and Chief Executive of the Moredun Foundation. In 2004, he was appointed Principal of The Royal Veterinary College of the University of London.
Quintin is chair of the Biological and Biotechnological Scientific Research Council (BBSRC) Animal Research Club, chair of the Board of Trustees of The Pirbright Institute, and a non-executive director of the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA). He is also a member of the Government Chief Scientist Steering Group on Animal and Plant Health in the UK. He is co-chair of the National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) Food Economy Task Force. He is a Governor of Queenswood School in Hertfordshire and a member of the Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership. In 2015 was elected as a Board member of Universities UK (UUK).
Professor McKellar was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2011 for services to science. He was a distinguished researcher with interests in the pharmacology of anti-infective and anti-inflammatory drugs in domestic animals.
Vice Chancellor – Leeds Trinity University
Professor House was appointed as the Vice Chancellor at Leeds Trinity University on 1st January 2013. Previous to this she was the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic at Middlesex University where she had worked since 1986. She was appointed Dean of the School of Social Sciences in 2000; Dean of Health and Social Sciences in 2002; and became Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic in September 2005. Professor House gained a national and international reputation for research into the management and monitoring of river water quality. She was responsible for the development of the House Index of Water Quality. As Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic she led projects on the student experience and employability in addition to her role as academic leader for the University.
As Vice-chancellor of Leeds Trinity University Professor House leads the University on all strategic matters, ensuring a financial base to allow the delivery of the University’s Strategic Plan including the overall mission, aims and objectives of the University. She represents the University externally at various groups including Universities UK (UUK), GuildHE and the Cathedral’s Group.
Professor House currently acts as the Chair of Higher Education Access Rewarding Transforming (HEART), Yorkshire Universities Audit Committee, Yorkshire Universities Small and Specialist Institutions Network Group and Vice Chair of the Cathedral’s Group. She also serves as a member of various committees and regional groups including: University Vocational Awards Council (UVAC), the UUK Student Policy Network and Teacher Education Advisory Group (TEAG), Guild HE Council, TEAG, Leeds Skills and Labour Market Group, Leeds Citizens Leadership Group and All Party Parliamentary University Group.
Head of Workforce Development (Research & Policy), Teesside University
Dr Ruth Helyer is Head of Workforce Development (Research & Policy) at Teesside University where she developed the innovative Negotiated Learning Framework (one of the first HE level work-based studies programmes in the UK) before moving to the Department of Academic Enterprise, working at the interface of business and higher education to research and develop innovative practice. Ruth began her academic career as a lecturer in English Literature and Film at the Universities of Teesside and Newcastle upon Tyne, specializing in contemporary American literature and postmodern theory. She has published widely in English Studies as well as in those areas more directly related to her current activity, for example workforce development; work-based learning; graduate employability; the accreditation of prior learning (APL); the changing demographics of the workforce; mentoring between business-focused academics and more.
An earlier career of ten years commercial experience with Barclays Bank Plc, has proved invaluable in enhancing Ruth’s current activities, which span the worlds of business and academia. This hybrid profile has encompassed work around widening participation and community learning as well as project management of initiatives which depend on industry partners for successful outcomes. As a champion of work-based learning, she has been instrumental in the University becoming one of the leaders in the sector in business engagement activities. Ruth continues to teach on Teesside’s PgC in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education.
Ruth’s popular text book The Work-Based Learning Student Handbook (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010) appears on numerous reading lists. She is also Editor in Chief of the Emerald published Higher Education Skills and Work-Based Learning – UVAC’s official journal and one of the few peer-reviewed journals publishing material of direct relevance to this growing academic area.
Ruth is a fellow of the RSA, the Higher Education Academy and a National Teaching Fellow (2013).
Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Southampton Solent University
Jane Longmore joined Southampton Solent University on 1 November 2007 as Pro Vice-Chancellor, Academic and was appointed Deputy Vice-Chancellor in January 2010. She had previously worked at the Universities of Reading and Sussex, St Mary’s University College, London, and, most recently, the University of Greenwich. Jane studied history at the University of Oxford; gained a PGCE from the University of Durham; was awarded her Doctorate in 1983 by the University of Reading; and was made a Professor of Urban History by Southampton Solent University at the end of 2007. She has had wide-ranging teaching experience and pursues her interests in pedagogy at a national level through her involvement with the Higher Education Academy. Jane currently chairs the HEA Forum for historians working in higher education.
As an experienced QAA Institutional Reviewer and a member of the Board of the QAA’s Advisory Committee on Degree-Awarding Powers, Jane combines a firm commitment to the provision of a high-quality student experience with a life-long interest in breaking down the barriers which prevent equal access to all forms of higher education. This is underpinned by a firm belief in the ability of education to open doors to professional opportunities and personal development. She led the University’s major HEFCE-funded Strategic Development Programme which aimed to develop new forms of progression, such as higher apprenticeships, to strengthen links with public- and private-sector employers and to increase flexible forms of curriculum delivery, including employer-based provision.
Jane chairs Southampton Solent University’s Access and Widening Participation Group which provides oversight and strategic guidance for the University’s work on widening participation, access and student retention, in addition to helping the University meet its commitment to social justice.
Deputy Provost, Greenwich School of Management
Debi moved to take up the post of Deputy Provost at Greenwich School of Management in September 2013. Prior to that, under Debi’s leadership, the Centre for Work Based Learning at the University of Greenwich developed a portfolio of programmes designed to support career and workforce development and undertook longitudinal tracking studies of apprentices and vocational learners to explore their progression decisions.
Debi began her career in Higher Education as a lecturer in Marketing and Cultural Industries. She became Dean of the School of Creative Enterprise at University of the Arts and established the Creative Industries Journal of which she remains Deputy Editor. She continues to publish on arts, marketing and social inclusion in the arts and higher education.
Senior Research Adviser, Australian Institute of Business
Professor Jonathan Garnett was, until July 2014, the Director of the Institute for Work Based Learning and Professor of Work Based Knowledge at Middlesex University. Jonathan has twenty one years experience at the leading edge of the development and operation of work based learning partnerships at higher education level (Certificate to Doctorate) and has worked with public, private and third sector organisations in the UK and internationally. His current research interests include the development of higher education practice and structures to support employer responsive provision and the use of work based learning to enhance the intellectual capital of employers. He is currently advising the Australian Institute of Business and is their representative on the UVAC Board.
Head of Academic Development, Institute for Work Based Learning, Middlesex University
Dr Darryll Bravenboer is a Principal Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy and has extensive experience of developing vocational and work-based higher education provision in response to the needs of a wide range of employment sectors in diverse professional contexts. His research interests include the philosophy and sociology of education, higher education policy, fair access, widening participation, lifelong learning and vocational, work-based and employer-responsive higher education. His current responsibilities include building sustainable partnerships with employers and industry sectors to deliver innovative higher-level learning opportunities as well as leading the University’s work in developing Higher and Degree Apprenticeships.
He is also Chair of Middlesex University’s Accreditation Board, which includes overseeing the University’s approach to individual APEL claims as well as the accreditation of external courses and training activity. Darryll is also a Trustee and Board member of SEEC credit consortium, Board member of Linking London, a member of the National Skills Academy for Retail HE Group and a member of the CITB Advisory Group for the construction sector.
Before joining Middlesex University, Darryll worked for the University of Hertfordshire in the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies as Director for the East of England Lifelong Learning Network. This included specific responsibility for the distribution of HEFCE Additional Student Numbers across the region, Progression Agreements, Curriculum Development Projects and the Creative and Cultural Industries sector. This involved working with eleven HEIs from diverse mission groups and thirty-five FECs, as well as a wide range of regional and national industry and sector organisations and employers to promote progression to higher education through vocational routes.
Prior to this Darryll was Director of Higher Education at Croydon College with responsibility for all aspects of higher education provision including: quality assurance and enhancement, HEFCE funding, curriculum development and validation, research and scholarship development, as well as significant partnership working with a range of universities. Darryll’s broad ranging experience also includes working as a Senior Graphic Design Consultant with major corporate clients and working in Secondary Schools as a qualified teacher.
Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic), Staffordshire University
Rosy Crehan is Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic) at Staffordshire University, where she is responsible for the academic portfolio of the University, learning and teaching, quality assurance and enhancement, management of the four academic Faculties and the portfolio of 23 UK and 19 international partnership partner institutions. Her research leadership includes the Staffordshire University submission to REF 2014.
Rosy enjoyed a high-profile first career as a professional clarinetist. She was a founder member of Opera North in Leeds in the position of principal clarinetist and later enjoyed a successful freelance musical career, combining working with many top UK orchestras, west end musical theatre and teaching commitments.
In a second career as a Fashion specialist, Fashion lecturing posts in three London Further Education Colleges led to a position at London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London. Senior Higher Education management posts followed at Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication, at Middlesex University as Head of Department of Art and Design and Acting Dean of the School of Arts and Education, and at University of West London as Executive Dean of the Faculty of the Arts. She took up her appointment at Staffordshire University in 2011.
Rosy is passionate about industry collaboration in education having secured £1.3M funding for industry linked projects over her career. At Staffordshire University she leads the work-based learning portfolio that includes a major portfolio of courses delivered with the armed forces, bespoke Foundation Degree provision and Higher Apprenticeship developments. She has led the successful Staffordshire Graduate Initiative, that embeds and assesses employability skills within the undergraduate curriculum.
She leads the Stoke-on-Trent University Quarter Project (in collaboration with Stoke on Trent College and Stoke Sixth Form College) and represents the University locally as Partner Governor for South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, member of the Clay Foundation Board of Trustees, trustee of the of New Victoria Theatre and member of the Stoke on Trent and Staffordshire Education Trust.
She follows her interests in improving learning and teaching and pedagogic development, widening participation and equality and diversity, on a national level as an active member of the Million + Learning and Teaching Group and through a range of Higher Education Academy and Higher Education Funding Council for England projects and working groups. She has recently been appointed as a QAA Institutional Reviewer.
Mr Conor Moss
Director of Education and Employer Partnerships, Sheffield Hallam University
Conor joined Sheffield Hallam University in January 2013 after a successful period as Head of Learning of the award winning University of Derby Corporate. In May 2015 he was appointed as Director of Education and Employer Partnerships at Sheffield Hallam University with strategic responsibility for Further Education, Transnational Education (TNE) and Employer partnerships.
Conor started his academic career specialising in strategic management, leadership and organisational development. He has extensive experience developing successful educational partnerships with both the private and public sectors.
He is committed to working with employers to break down the barriers between university and business and on creating employability and employment opportunities for students to flourish and grow.
He is passionate about working with employer and education partners to provide learners with access to higher-level skills, regardless of academic background or career stage. He has pursued this passion in both his professional and personal life and represents the university in a number of forums. He leads the University’s RISE programme; an initiative with University of Sheffield and Sheffield City Council to match graduates with growth SME’s. He is the Higher Education representative for Sheffield City Region LEP on the Skills, Employment and Education Board.
Conor is a Senior Fellow of the HEA and a Fellow of the Learning and Performance Institute.