West College Scotland Names New Principal

West College Scotland Names New Principal

West College Scotland has named Liz Connolly as its new Principal and Chief Executive. 

She succeeds Audrey Cumberford and will take up her new position on Monday (3 September).  Ms Connolly has been the College’s Vice-Principal Corporate Development since its formation in 2013.

Commenting on her appointment, Liz Connolly said:

“It is an enormous privilege and a huge honour for me to be appointed new Principal and Chief Executive of West College Scotland.

“Since merger, the College has developed into one of Scotland’s largest educational institutions and become an important partner to schools, businesses, local authorities and community groups across the region.

“This has been achieved through the hard work of our staff, who have also had to cope with a period of unprecedented change in the sector.  The winners have been our students and the people who use our services and facilities.

“My challenge now is to turn ‘good’ into ‘even better’.  This is a vibrant and dynamic college with innovation at its heart.  It is one which is ambitious and whose staff strive for excellence in everything they do.

“It’s a wonderful legacy to inherit and one I intend to build on. I know I can depend on the goodwill and support of our outstanding staff to meet the challenges that lie ahead.”

West College Scotland teaches 22,000 students, full-time, part-time and online.  It has 1,200 staff working at campuses in Clydebank, Greenock and Paisley, equivalent to about 1% of total regional employment.  It has an annual turnover of £70 million. 

Keith McKellar, the Chair of the Board of Management, who appointed Ms Connolly, said:

“I am delighted Liz has agreed to become Principal of our College. She emerged from a very strong field of candidates but impressed the Board with her vision for the College’s future.

“West College Scotland is a large-scale organisation, a major influencer of the educational landscape across a huge swathe of Scotland.  Liz’s vision, allied to her record in education and business, convinced us that she is the right person to lead the College into the next stage of our development.”

Donogh O'Brien, who led the executive search team at Aspen, is delighted with the positive service feedback we received from all applicants and WCS stakeholders involved in the process about the calibre of choice and performance of all candidates who met the organisation. We are confident that the College will continue to prosper on behalf of the students, staff and businesses in this Region. 

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