After eight years at the helm of the University of the West of Scotland (UWS), Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, is leaving the institution having secured another senior role in the UK Higher Education sector, as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Law.
The UWS University Court has already approved a clear and exciting blueprint for the future through the University’s ambitious Strategy 2025 and beyond, and is now overseeing the process to recruit the next UWS Principal and Vice-Chancellor to deliver and further build on this bold vision.
Professor Mahoney leaves UWS in a strong position, with the University having delivered record growth, despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, and after a hugely successful tenure during which he spearheaded major transformational change at the institution.
During his tenure he has been recognised as Business Leader of the Year in Renfrewshire and shortlisted for UK Higher Education Leader of the year by The Guardian.
Some of the University’s highlights and achievements under Professor Mahoney’s leadership include:
- The growth of the University’s student population to over 22,000, with an associated 30% growth in income
- The launch of a thriving new UWS London campus
- Construction and opening of a new award-winning £100m UWS Lanarkshire Campus, widely regarded as one of the most sustainable higher education buildings in the UK
- Consolidation and maintenance of UWS’s position as Scotland’s leading university for widening access to Higher Education for those from the most disadvantaged communities
- Significant improvement in the University’s student progression rates
- Changing the culture around sport, physical activity and exercise across UWS and growing investment in facilities, as well as improving the UWS British Universities and Colleges Sport position and support for local, national and international sport
- Major growth in the University’s global footprint and the international diversity of UWS with students from more than 110 countries
- The establishment of UWS as a force for good in global knowledge creation, research and innovation delivering some of the world’s most advanced research in areas such as eye care, drone technology, thin films, 5G and more
- Improving the impact that UWS has had on global warming. From electrification of the vehicle fleet to the development of the Lanarkshire Campus and as Chair of the Universities Scotland Efficiency and Climate Emergency Committee
- A significant uplift in the volume of submissions to the 2021 REF with a 47% increase in the number of impact case studies submitted in the 2014 REF, against a backdrop of research award growth from c£5m in 2015 to c£14m in 2020
- The positing of UWS as the number one University in Scotland for the volume of Knowledge Transfer Partnerships and,
- Achieving and maintaining the University’s position in the 501-600 banding in the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings 2021 and the naming of UWS as the number one university in Scotland for reducing inequalities in the THE Impact Rankings 2021.
UWS Chair of Court, Kate Allum, said: “Professor Mahoney leaves UWS in excellent health having worked closely with colleagues across the University, as well as the University Court, during his tenure to firmly establish the University’s trajectory for future success and growth.
“On behalf of the entire University community, I would like to thank Professor Mahoney for his outstanding commitment, inspirational leadership, energy and passion for UWS and we wish him every further success in this next chapter of his career.”
Professor Mahoney said: “Over these past eight years I have been delighted to work with so many talented colleagues from across the University to drive change and improvement, with our students at the heart of absolutely everything we do.
“It is therefore with an enormous sense of pride that I reflect on our successes to date and the foundations we have put in place together to achieve excellence on the world stage.”
The Chair of the governing body, the University Court, will now lead the process for the appointment of a new Principal and Vice-Chancellor for the University of the West of Scotland.