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New Appointments

The Open University has recently made a number of new appointments to its senior leadership team.

Pro-Chancellor – Malcolm Sweeting

Malcolm Sweeting has taken up the role of Pro-Chancellor effective from Tuesday 1 January. He has a widely established reputation as a leading corporate finance lawyer at home and abroad; most recently focusing on the developing markets. Malcolm is also a European Advisory Board Member of The Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business, an Advisory Board Member of CityUK and the China-Britain Business Council and a Trustee of Hope & Homes for Children.

As Pro-Chancellor of The Open University, he will be responsible for chairing the OU’s governing body, the Council, and will sit on the University’s Finance, Membership, Remuneration, Strategic Planning and Resources, and Development Committees. He will also play a key role in promoting the University’s external reputation and in influencing major external stakeholders both nationally and internationally and occasionally officiate as Chief Presiding Officer at degree ceremonies. The role also provides strategic direction, support, guidance and constructive challenge to the University’s Executive.

Malcolm commented:

“The Open University is instantly recognised with great affection and respect for its achievements. Almost everyone I speak to has a story to tell about the OU, and how it has inspired one of their family or friends to achieve their ambitions. As the OU celebrates its 50th Anniversary, it is with great pride that I take this wonderful opportunity to assist the OU to continue to change the lives of so many and to make such a profound and deep impact on society.”

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Acting) – Professor Josie Fraser

Josie FraserProfessor Josie Fraser has been appointed the role of acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor as of 1 January. Josie joined The Open University in March 2017, and was formerly the Executive Dean of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). She has championed team-based learning as a teaching style on the national and international stage, resulting in invitations to consult at other universities and to sit on the board of an international healthcare education organisation. Josie promotes initiatives to broaden access to STEM subjects for under-represented groups, and enjoys bringing amazing OU research to schools and the general public.

Josie will provide support to the Vice-Chancellor during The Open University’s 50th year. She will also chair the new VCE-Academic group, who have collective accountability for all aspects of the OU’s academic endeavours.

Josie commented:

“I’m very honoured to be Deputy Vice-Chancellor in The Open University’s 50th year. We’ve got a lot going on at the OU in 2019, as we showcase how we have transformed the lives of over 2 million graduates. We will be celebrating a number of achievements, including our 50 year partnership with the BBC, our strong links with partner Universities around the world, and growing range of teaching resources, such as our free-learning site, OpenLearn.

While the Vice-Chancellor is a very busy ambassador, we also want to keep our focus on continuing to improve student experience, and delivering results from our huge investment in new technology. As Deputy Vice-Chancellor, my goal is to help the Vice-Chancellor and colleagues across the university to have a fantastic year of celebrations with our students and alumni, while also moving the University forward towards the next 50 years.”

Executive Dean for WELS – Professor Fary Cachelin

Professor Fary Cachelin has been appointed Executive Dean of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies (WELS). She joins The Open University as Professor of Psychology and Wellbeing from 1 March. Fary is currently Pro-Vice Chancellor for Community and Civic Engagement and Dean of the College of Applied Health and Communities at the University of East London. She has extensive experience internationally, with roles at both the University of North Carolina and at California State University. Whilst working at these American institutions, Fary established a research program examining eating disorders and barriers to treatment in men and women of ethnic minority groups, and received grant funding to develop a self-help program to treat binge eating in Latina and Black women.

As the Executive Dean of WELS, Fary will be look after the overall management of the faculty. It is the responsibility of the Executive Dean to ensure that students receive the highest quality experience and have the greatest opportunity to succeed. The Executive Dean is a member of the Vice-Chancellor’s Executive Team, contributing to the University’s strategic direction.

Fary commented:

“I am very excited about this opportunity to join The Open University, which is at the forefront of leading the transformation in teaching and learning and in how education is delivered. I believe The Open University, and the Faculty of WELS, will continue to play a major role in shaping and defining a world paradigm for education that widens participation and crosses the boundaries of nations and cultures. I feel that there is a lot of potential to build and create, and to make a real global impact, at the OU. I consider it a privilege to be able to work in such an environment and look forward to collaborating with colleagues.”

About Author

Hannah is part of the Media Relations Team at The Open University, working with the Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies. With experience both agency and in-house, Hannah has worked on campaigns for a number of large corporate companies and brands, including RBS, NatWest, Travelodge, Audible, AA and the Royal Academy of Dance. She has completed a Masters in Publishing Studies from Oxford Brookes and is currently studying towards a DipHE in Computer, IT and Design. In her free time she enjoys photography, reading and going to the theatre.

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