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Welcome from the Principal and Chief Executive

Thank you for your interest in the role of Chair of Tourism at West Highland College, an academic partner of the University of the Highlands and Islands.

The University of the Highlands and Islands is an integrated university encompassing both further and higher education. Based in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, our distinctive partnership of 13 independent colleges and research institutions is locally based and rooted in communities, but with national and international reach. One of the newest and most exciting universities in the UK, the University of the Highlands and Islands is able to offer a vast range of learning opportunities across further and higher education, research and work-based learning.

While the post-holder will be based at West Highland College UHI in Fort William, situated in one of the most beautiful areas in the Highlands, the Chair will have a partner-wide remit for the university, working on behalf of partners across the network. Subjects in the wider tourism sector are taught at a number of academic partners, while tourism research projects are undertaken at research centres such as the Centre for Mountain Studies and the Institute of Northern Studies.

The importance of tourism to Scotland’s economic well-being has long been recognised. Scotland’s Economic Strategy (2015), for example, identifies tourism as one of the six key economic sectors. As reported recently by VisitScotland, tourism in Scotland is now worth more than £11 bn per annum, with £8.9 bn of that from direct consumer spending alone; tourism is thus one of Scotland’s key economic contributors and continues to grow.

Underpinning the current national tourism strategy - ‘Tourism Scotland 2020’ - are the need for building the sector’s capabilities and leadership and collaboration. This post will enable the consolidation and expansion of UHI’s current tourism provision and research expertise and create a senior academic leadership role based in the Highlands and Islands, providing strategic support for one of its most valuable key economic sectors.

This is an exciting opportunity for the right person to join a great team of highly motivated people who are all focused on making a difference for our learners and our researchers, our businesses and our communities in the Highlands and Islands.

While we would welcome applicants from across the tourism field, we are particularly interested in developing curriculum and academic leadership in adventure and/or outdoor tourism, and applications from specialists in these fields are encouraged.

If you feel you have the right knowledge, skills and experience, you are a dynamic leader and team player with drive and ambition, and you want to live in one of the world’s most outstanding areas of natural beauty, I look forward to receiving your application.

Lydia Rohmer

Principal and Chief Executive