I am delighted that you are considering applying for a role at the University of Derby.
At Derby we have worked to build a powerful regional university that addresses the needs of our students, the region and beyond, embarking on an ambitious period of growth to take the University forward to its future.
Our 2018-2030 Strategic Framework, launched in June 2018, signalled a new chapter for our University, providing staff and stakeholders with clarity over our direction of travel and raising the bar in terms of our institutional ambitions. Embedding high performance in everything we do has seen a step change in the way we operate, one that is generating strong results and outcomes despite the challenges we have faced during the pandemic.
2025 is a key milestone in the lifecycle of the Strategic Framework, so to assure delivery of our strategic plans and ambitions, we have recently made some changes to the University’s Senior Leadership Groups. These now comprise a new University Executive Board (UEB), Vice-Chancellor’s Executive (VCE) and Delivery and Operations Leadership Group (DOL).
In addition, these changes are designed in response to the external environment, the need to continuously reflect and improve on performance, and our commitment to ensuring high standards of integrity, transparency and governance.
As a result, our two new Pro Vice-Chancellor/ Deans will be joining us at a time of real momentum and positive change, where we look to build on our teaching excellence, enhance the student experience, continue to grow our innovation and research profile, and ensure Derby has impact and influence regionally, nationally and internationally.
Furthermore, the civic role we play, and the importance of the University as an anchor institution, remains stronger than ever, with our commitment to working in partnership to improve the health, education and wellbeing of our city and county being reaffirmed through the development of a Civic University Agreement.
The University is comprised of four Colleges – Art, Humanities and Education; Business, Law and Social Science; Health, Psychology and Social Care; and Science and Engineering. Our four Pro Vice-Chancellor/ Deans lead these colleges and are members of the Vice-Chancellor’s Executive. They provide strategic leadership for their college as well as taking responsibility for specific aspects of the University’s corporate strategy.
We are an ambitious university, on an upwards trajectory, and therefore need two Pro Vice-Chancellors, with the knowledge, experience and leadership qualities to drive forward a high performing team leading the Colleges, one that puts our students, and the experience they have at Derby, at the heart of everything it does.
Thank you for your interest and time.
Located in the heart of England, we build on our region’s heritage of innovation to provide industry-relevant, expert teaching at all levels.
The University of Derby is a modern, innovative education provider that achieved its University status in 1992. Teaching at the Derby site actually dates back to 1851, when it was a Diocesan Institution for training teachers, so we have over 160 years of expertise in education.
We have since become a University of first choice for students who want a supportive, aspirational environment where they can equip themselves for the career they choose. Our significant investment in world class facilities is building on our reputation for student-focused real-world learning in an increasingly competitive sector.
Rated Gold in the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF), we want everyone to receive the high-quality education they deserve, regardless of age, background or location. We were named University of the Year at the UK Social Mobility Awards 2020 and Higher Education Institution of the Year at the 2020 NEON (National Education Opportunities Network) Awards. And we have won the Guardian University Award 2020 for Social and Community Impact.
During the last ten years we have invested over £200 million in facilities designed to give students the very best possible learning environment. We have more investment planned and continue to develop teaching to be innovative, stimulating and engaging.
Recent Investments include
Why the University of Derby?
Challenging, interesting and constantly changing, the University of Derby is an extraordinary place to learn and an incredibly rewarding place to work.
A major employer in the region, passionate people join the University because:
Recognised in the top twenty nationally for teaching quality and the number one university in the East Midlands for graduate employment, demand for places at the University of Derby has risen by nearly 20% in the last two years. It is a university of choice for learners, employers and partners.
You’ll have lots of opportunities to progress
If you work hard and perform well, the University of Derby offers a wealth of career progression opportunities and all the training and support you need to succeed.
You’ll get job satisfaction
Staff love the work they do and the impact they have on the lives of learners and the wider community.
Our recent staff survey reported that 93% of staff have good work relationships, 80% are proud to work at the University and 73% get a sense of personal accomplishment from their role.
You can make a difference
The University welcomes new ideas that improve what we do and the way we do it. Financially strong, the University is seriously ambitious so there are lots of opportunities for you to make an impact and be recognised for it.
You’ll benefit from discounted access to some of the best university facilities in the UK including a working theatre, multi-million pound sports centre and commercial day spa.
You can read more about the University at https://www.derby.ac.uk/
You can read our most recent Annual Review here https://www.derby.ac.uk/about/annual-review/
Our Strategic Framework provides the foundations and direction on which to plan, perform and succeed in a changing and globally dynamic environment between now and 2030. Developed in consultation with staff,
students and stakeholders, the Framework has a simple promise at its heart: everything the University does is driven by delivering excellence and opportunities for our students, staff and region.
The Framework is designed to allow us to be flexible and adaptable to the changing environment in which we operate. Producing a long-term strategy during a period of unprecedented change, not only in the sector but politically, socially and economically, creates a challenge but many opportunities. The University is ambitious for our students, staff and region knowing what is right for students today may not be for tomorrow and getting this right is most important for our future success.
The Framework is supported by three ‘pillars’:
We have a long-standing reputation for teaching excellence of which we are extremely proud and now is the time to build further on this, through more focused and integrated applied research.
Opportunities are a core element of our academic approach – not only in terms of delivering these, but through a culture of curiosity and drive instilled in students and staff to seek and create their own. We are proud to be the only University in the city and county as this enriches connectivity within the region, but as importantly, we relish the civic responsibilities this brings.
This is an ambitious University with purpose, positivity and confidence in what we are going to accomplish over the next ten years.
From the heart of England, we empower people across the globe to achieve their potential and make a positive contribution to society.
Everything we do is driven by delivering excellence and opportunities for our students, staff and region.
The University of Derby’s approach is underpinned by the following core principles:
Derbyshire provides the perfect base for our thriving university. Situated in the heart of England and regarded as the home of the Industrial Revolution, it is a place where innovators and industrialists have made their mark on the world for over 300 years.
During this time, the region has built up a strong reputation for its ingenuity, practical application, industry, inventiveness and creativity – all traits well and truly embedded into the philosophy and approach of our university.
Derby today has flourished into a vibrant, modern city. Its industrial heart still beats strong, with thriving global businesses and successful SMEs operating side-by-side, creating fantastic opportunities for our students, our graduates and our local communities. Beyond that, its retail, cultural and sporting offer continues to grow, making it a hugely attractive place to live and study.
On our doorstep is the Peak District, which attracts 10 million visitors from across the globe each year. This is flanked by the towns of Buxton and Chesterfield, home to our university’s other two main sites.
With East Midlands Airport providing a global gateway and London only 90 minutes away by train, Derby’s national and international reach is befitting of a city with such a fine heritage.
At Derby, our People Vision is based on the simple belief that if we attract the right people, motivate them and provide development in a supportive, friendly performance-focused environment, then together we will enjoy continuing success. We believe that this is the ultimate people business and we place great emphasis upon engaging with colleagues and stakeholders.
This will be achieved by putting the University’s values at the heart of everything we do and by being a ‘values-led’ organisation. This means that, in striving to realise our strategic ambitions, we place as much value on how we do things as on what we do.
You can read our full Strategic Framework brochure here.
A robust set of values has been a key factor in achieving the success we have enjoyed to date. How we approach our work and how we approach each other is as important as what we do to ensure we continue to build on our success.
The University wants all students, staff and stakeholders to be delighted by their experience, proud of their achievements and become active promoters of the University.
Continuing to do this has given us a clear and positive signature and a definite edge in the new HE marketplace. Moreover, we are committed to providing all staff with excellent career and personal development opportunities, together with a total rewards philosophy based on providing competitive, affordable, flexible packages that recognise performance.
Everything we do is driven by delivering excellence and opportunities for our students, our staff and our region.
We have a long-standing reputation for teaching excellence of which we are extremely proud – now is the time to build further on this, through more focused and integrated applied research. Opportunities are a core element of our academic approach – not only in terms of delivering these, but through a culture of curiosity and drive instilled in our students and staff to seek and create their own. We are proud to be the only university in our city and county as this enriches our connectivity within the region but, as importantly, we relish the civic responsibilities this brings.
Our University celebrates diversity and recognises the challenges of being human and the significance and impact of inclusion within an organisation. We are all different, with individual talents and needs. Our inclusive community of academics and professional service staff work hard to support and enable everyone to thrive and be the best version of themselves.
Across our academic and professional services, we promote an environment that challenges unconscious bias and discrimination at every level of the organisation.
We do this through:
In the College of Arts, Humanities and Education, we offer a great student experience, always focusing on our students as individuals and working hard to prepare them for the challenges of graduate employment in the 21st century. Our courses are current, topical, relevant and designed to help students progress in their career.
Our strong creative community of staff and students, combined with a dynamic, energetic flourishing creative economy, allows talent to thrive and for everyone to realise their ambitions. We encourage collaboration, reflecting a professional real-world experience where these subjects feed off each other, share facilities and combine resources.
The College has three component parts: the Institute of Education, the School of Arts and the School of Humanities and Journalism. The Institute leads innovative professional practice in Education within the city and county; the School of Arts is a beacon of excellence in creative, performing and therapeutic arts; and the School of Humanities and Journalism profiles as the leader in applied humanities and vocational journalism. As a sum of its parts, the College of Arts, Humanities and Education nurtures intellectual creativity and professionalism and applies it for life and work.
Institute of Education
The Institute of Education has a long and successful history of educating and training educational professionals. It is an innovative and supportive community of learners with a strong research culture and reputation for providing innovative solutions in the field of education. Working with a range of external partners, the Institute plays a central role in the provision of educational services throughout the Midlands and beyond. The Institute’s vibrant teaching portfolio offers diverse perspectives, blends digital technologies and facilitates work-based opportunities to support graduate employability. Institute colleagues are experts in the field of Early Childhood, SEND, Careers Guidance, Professional and Vocational Education and Teacher Training.
School of Arts
The School of Arts is a place where talent thrives and ambitions are realised, a place that values risk taking as a key part of our educational practice, and a place that values disruption in the creative sense of the word. The School embraces a broad spectrum of creative practice from Fine Art to Design, Film Making to Therapeutic Arts, Fashion to Theatre, Music to Photography. With a long history of UG and PGT delivery, the School engages external partners and industry, recognising the value external practice brings to the students and their future careers. The School seeks to combine the best of traditional and contemporary practice and works seamlessly between these modes, encouraging positivity, ambition and possibility. Our students are a creative community of aspiring individuals who seek to make their mark within the creative industries, individuals unhindered by convention and creatives open to new ideas and opportunity.
School of Humanities and Journalism
The School of Humanities and Journalism is an inspiring, collegial community of research, critical discourse and dialogue: dialogue with each other and also, of course, with all of our students. Delivering degree programmes in Humanities and Journalism from Foundation Year to postgraduate, colleagues’ research interests are as varied as our courses. You will join a community comprising esteemed academics as well as industry professionals who provide academic teaching as well as sector-leading work-based experience, knowledge and skills. Colleagues can enjoy a varied range of work activities comprising teaching, research, and academic citizenship within and beyond the School.
The Pro Vice-Chancellor/ Dean (PVC/ Dean) role is one of strategic academic leadership, with responsibility for their College.
As a member of the Vice-Chancellor’s Executive the role holder will support the delivery of the University’s wider strategic framework and objectives, including driving the College’s strategic profile and influence around our six core areas of academic excellence: Public Service, Business, Economic & Social Policy, Zero Carbon, Data Science, Biomedical Science and Creative Industries.
As an applied University that is passionate about the transformational nature of education and a champion of social mobility, the PVC/ Dean will strive to inspire and create opportunities for all, ensure that we aim to achieve this in everything we do and be constantly striving for excellence. We must reach all communities and attract students from around the world.
PERSON SPECIFICATION – Essential criteria
Skills, knowledge and abilities
The salary grade for both roles is Senior Management Family – Level A (competitive salary).
Additional benefits include:
For more information on the benefits of working at the University of Derby go to the Benefit pages of our website.
The University of Derby is committed to promoting equality, diversity and inclusion. However you identify, we actively celebrate the knowledge, experience and talents each person brings.
Anderson Quigley is acting as an employment advisor to the University. An executive search process is being carried out by Anderson Quigley in addition to the public advertisement.
Should you wish to discuss either of these roles in strict confidence, please contact our advising consultants at Anderson Quigley:
Applications should consist of:
Completed applications should be uploaded at www.andersonquigley.com/candidates using the corresponding AQ reference number above. The closing date for applications is noon on Monday 7 March 2022.