Appointment of the Head of International

Welcome

Thank you very much for expressing an interest in becoming the next Head of International at Solent University, Southampton.

With a strong track record of innovation and creativity, Solent has grown to become one of the leading new universities, with strong local roots as well as a renowned international reputation. We have embedded ties in the city, local region and beyond, and strive to make a significant contribution to the communities we serve, while putting our students at the heart of everything we do.

Our Strategy 2025: Future Ready, continues our work to build on Solent’s success, with a clear mission of ensuring all our learners are work ready, world ready and future ready.

Building on our successful recruitment this Summer, by 2025 we will be providing a growing number of students from a wide range of backgrounds with a life affirming and life changing education, enriched by a vibrant university culture of research, free speech, equal opportunities, knowledge exchange and partnerships. And when our students leave us, they will be graduating with the knowledge and skills to achieve their ambitions, and the passion and confidence to shape the future.

The University-wide strategic approach to internationalisation encompasses international student recruitment, institutional links, and exchange/pathway partnerships and our Our new Head of International will own the deliver of this strategy.  This is a recruitment focused role and following a buoyant intake we have focused our priorities on: increasing our international student recruitment; reducing our exposure to market risk; moving away from historic reliance on EU and UG recruitment; protecting our reputation as a quality recruiter; promoting our reputation as a quality education provider; and increasing our income and reducing our cost of acquisition. We have also reduced our market focus from 23 priority countries to a core 12.

As we re-calibrate our international activity and build on recent recruitment success this is a critical role. We are at an exciting time in our evolution and this role will lead on establishing and continually improving working relationships internally and externally to maximise student recruitment

You can find out more about the University and the role on this website. Our advising consultants at Anderson Quigley would be pleased to discuss the role with you, in strict confidence – their details can also be found on this site.

This role presents the opportunity to lead a critical function and deliver real value at a time of change for both the University and the sector. I do hope you will make an application to join us.

Leigh Rengger
Chief Commercial & Marketing Officer

About us

To deliver our strategy, achieve our vision and ensure our students and the University are ready for the future, we are shaping our work around three key priorities:

1. Student success;

2. Research and knowledge exchange;

3. Engaging with our communities.

For us, student success means ensuring our students are ready for the future world of work, enterprise, and volunteering. We offer a portfolio of exciting, modern and academically rigorous degree courses with employment-focused, real-world learning that prepares students to succeed in their chosen profession, vocation or enterprise.

Through our research and knowledge exchange, we strive for real-world learning, real-world research and real-world impact. This means that the successes of our students and our engagements with our communities are shaped and inspired by our applied research and knowledge exchange.

We are committed to having a positive role in shaping the future of Southampton and beyond, and to delivering opportunities for our students, staff and alumni to be part of that regional success. Public engagement is in our DNA, and at the start of 2021 we signed the National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement’s (NCCPE) Manifesto for Public Engagement and have committed to working with NCCPE to review our current public engagement strategies, activities and staff support.

As we build on our students’ and the University’s successes, we will seek further opportunities to grow and improve whilst remaining focused on creating a university that is sustainable and which fosters equal opportunities. To do this, we must maintain our financial resilience and ensure we are underpinned by a culture that will allow us to change, adapt and focus on the future.

We are dedicated to the pursuit of university education that enables learners from all backgrounds to become enterprising citizens and responsible leaders. We are committed to promoting economic and social prosperity for the communities we serve.

Put simply – we want Solent graduates to be the passionate, creative professionals of the future, bringing expertise and energy into their communities and workplaces.

UNIVERSITY VALUES

Respect: Respecting each other, recognising others’ strengths and celebrating our diversity so that everyone can give their best.

Ownership: Owning and being accountable for delivering a welcoming and professional service and working with pace and commitment to deliver objectives and support strategic priorities.

Inclusivity: Ensuring through our teaching, support and work that we are inclusive, underpinning all the work we do at the University.

Engagement: Engage with focus, drive and enthusiasm to deliver excellent teaching, new initiatives and objectives, setting an example and motivating others to engage as appropriate.

Integrity: Act with professionalism and honesty in all our dealings with each other, our students, suppliers and partners of the University.

Teamwork: Working effectively and collaboratively and being united in delivering the priorities of the University in everything we do.

Click here for more information on the University.

The role

Head of International

Job reference:
AQ1619

Job title: Head of International
Reports to: Chief Commercial & Marketing Officer
Grade: 10, Management
Responsible for: Two senior managers & total team of 11
Hours: Full time

Job purpose

As part of the External Relations Senior Management team, the Head of International will own the University’s Internationalisation strategy and its delivery. The University-wide strategic approach to internationalisation encompasses international student recruitment, institutional links, and exchange/pathway partnerships.

International recruitment is a key driver of growth and the University strategy sets ambitious goals for International recruitment. This role will lead the International team, work internally across academic and services teams and working significantly with partners across multiple key countries to deliver these goals.

Key responsibilities

  • Own and deliver the University’s internationalisation strategy, develop and deliver yearly operational plans along the following key work streams:
    • International Student Recruitment;
    • Transnational Education and International Partnerships;
    • Global mobility opportunities for students;
  • Create an effective University wide approach to Internationalisation working with Vice Chancellor group members and their senior teams;
  • Develop and optimise relationships with key external partners (eg with foreign embassies, pathways, agents) to drive the University’s performance against its strategies and goals;
  • Provide Leadership & management of staff and teams tasked with delivery of key internationalisation activities;
  • Agree international recruitment targets through the Student Number planning cycle and meet/exceed the targets;
  • Ensure all international recruitment activity results in the University meeting its requirements through UKVI and OfS metrics;
  • Establish and continually improve working relationships with teams across internal teams (especially the wider External Relations team & Academic staff) to maximise student recruitment;
  • Setting and managing the Internationalisation budget across pay and non pay including agents commissions and scholarships;
  • Manage activities to ensure compliance with the University’s financial instructions, policies and procedure and associated risk management arrangements;

PERSON SPECIFICATION

Qualifications

  • A degree in a relevant field.

Knowledge

  • Extensive knowledge of UK higher education sector systems and processes;
  • Familiarity with the policy terrain with regard to international student recruitment, including awareness of key issues relating to Home Office practice;
  • Extensive knowledge of international markets for the purpose of international student recruitment and Transnational Education.

Experience

  • Significant experience of working at a senior level in an international role in British higher education;
  • Establishing and growing relationships with International agents/networks;
  • Developing beneficial relationships with foreign embassies;
  • Experience working in a higher education recruitment context and driving significant growth;
  • Management of multi-functional teams and associated project management and budget responsibility;
  • Contract negotiation; and partnership working.

Skills

  • Strong leadership & management skills with the ability to create high performing teams;
  • Strong commercial and financial acumen;
  • Strong analytical focus to ensure insight driven strategies and plans and critical analysis of performance;
  • Outstanding communication, interpersonal and negotiation skills;
  • Ability to engage and influence effectively by building personal & departmental credibility and respect across a range of academic and non-academic internal audiences;
  • Excellent networking and confident negotiation skills for building and developing relationships with customers, partner & stakeholders;
  • Sound judgement in combination with the ability to effectively manage multiple and competing priorities within a complex operational environment;
  • Ability to work across national and cultural boundaries with sensitivity to environmental factors;
  • Adept at motivating and inspiring staff to high standards of performance, at a distance when required (i.e. overseas).

Demonstrate the University Values

  • Respect: Respecting each other, recognising other’s strengths, and celebrating our diversity so that everyone can give their best;
  • Ownership: Owning and being accountable for delivering a welcoming and professional service and working with pace and commitment to deliver objectives and support strategic priorities;
  • Inclusivity: Ensuring through our teaching, support, and work that we are inclusive, underpinning all the work we do at the University;
  • Engagement: Engage with focus, drive, and enthusiasm to deliver excellent teaching, new initiatives and objectives, setting an example and motivating others to engage as appropriate;
  • Integrity: Act with professionalism and honesty in all our dealings with each other, our students, suppliers, and partners of the University;
  • Teamwork: Working effectively and collaboratively and being united in delivering the priorities of the University in everything we do.

Note:

  • Requirement to travel extensively in support of the role;
  • Occasional evening and weekend working required in support of on/off campus

Terms of appointment

A competitive salary will be negotiated with the successful candidate.

We offer a range of workplace benefits, including:

  • competitive holiday entitlement, plus statutory bank holidays;
  • a contributory pension scheme;
  • annual performance and development reviews;
  • a relocation scheme for staff who live more than 50 miles away from the University (subject to eligibility);
  • interest-free travel loans;
  • on-site gym, sporting facilities and a range of wellbeing initiatives; and
  • discounts on a range of services including healthcare, insurance, mortgages and independent financial / legal advice.

Equality & Diversity

At Solent, we don’t just accept difference, we celebrate it and support it, for the benefit of our people, our students, staff and our community.

The University’s equality objectives are integral in promoting and achieving fair treatment and equality for all and as part of this, we aim to foster a community with a culture of transparency, mutual trust and respect devoid of hatred and intolerance.

University staff can join our LGBT+ staff network – a supportive social group for employees who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, non-binary, or are questioning their sexuality or gender identity. This group also supports many events both on-campus and in the local community, including the Human Library and Southampton Pride.

Solent also has a well-established Equality and Wellbeing committee, made up of students and staff, to proactively assist us in providing an excellent people experience underpinned by our values, and our genuine commitment to equality, diversity and inclusivity, irrespective of personal or protected characteristics.

This committee plays a key role in ensuring equality and diversity across the University, and leads on wellbeing initiatives, such as the introduction of our Mental Health and Wellbeing vision for both staff and students, launched earlier this year.

We believe that all our people should be treated fairly, regardless of their age, ethnicity, beliefs, sexual orientation, or gender. As part of this, Solent University is committed to continuing to work on closing the gender pay gap and is in the process of creating an updated action plan to determine the necessary steps to make this happen.

How to apply

Anderson Quigley is acting as an employment advisor to Solent University, Southampton. An executive search process is being carried out by Anderson Quigley in addition to the public advertisement.

Should you wish to discuss the role in strict confidence, please contact our advising consultants at Anderson Quigley: Sophie Rees on +44(0)7719 313 982; sophie@andersonquigley.com or Ed Pritchard on +44(0)7873 218 380; ed@andersonquigley.com

The closing date for applications is noon on Monday 12 December 2022.

Applications should consist of:

  • A full CV.
  • A covering letter setting out your interest in the role and details of how you match the experience criteria outlined in the person specification.
  • Details of two referees, though please note that we will not approach your referees without your prior consent and only should you be shortlisted.
  • Please complete the following online Equal Opportunity Monitoring Form.

Completed applications should be uploaded at www.andersonquigley.com/candidates using the reference number AQ1619

Timetable

Closing date: noon on Monday 12 December 2022
Longlisting: w/c 19 December 2022
Preliminary interviews with AQ: w/c 2 and 9 January 2023
Shortlist meeting: w/c 16 January 2023
Final Panel Interviews: TBC