Council Appointments

New Lay Members for 2020 

Are you a senior professional interested in making a difference in an organisation that is driven by the transformative power of education and research?

We are seeking Lay Members of Council who will contribute to the shaping and delivery of the mission and vision of the University of Kent – one of the UK’s leading universities - by providing support and constructive challenge to the executive, while ensuring effective governance and long-term  sustainability.  You will be interested in learning about the complexity of managing a major University in a fast-changing higher education environment, as well as transferring your skills and experience to benefit the next generation of learners and leaders.

The Council consists of 26 members, and its remit includes overall responsibility for the University’s mission and strategic vision, oversight of its effective management and appropriate planning for future developments, as well as its financial sustainability, regulatory compliance, and ensuring that the interests of key stakeholders are met.  The overall aim is to deliver excellence in our teaching, research and innovation, with community engagement that makes a real difference in supporting the wider Kent region and beyond, through our campuses at Canterbury and Medway and our study centres in Europe.

You will be a senior professional with a significant track record of achievement and a sound understanding of corporate governance.  You will apply your experience to benefit the University in key areas such as the development of new strategic areas such as the Kent and Medway Medical School, embedding of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion framework, and overseeing the University’s response to the challenges arising from the coronavirus.  We welcome in particular applications from the following fields: finance/audit, business, science and engineering, higher education, estates, legal, human resources, international affairs and health and safety.  The University is committed to Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity and particularly welcomes applications from under-represented groups.

This role entails an estimated commitment of 20-25 days per year, including council committees, training events, plus optional attendance at degree ceremonies and open lectures.  This is a voluntary role but appropriate expenses may be claimed.

Closing date: Mondy 31 August 2020

For further information, please download the job description and visit our website.

For an informal conversation please contact Dr Sinead Critchley, Director of Governance and Assurance (Secretary to Council).

Email: .


Please apply with a CV and a covering letter explaining why you wish to apply and what you think you could bring to the role.

Email to: Jo Pearsall, Head of Corporate Governance,

Council Membership

The University Charter, Paragraph 8, describes the Council membership as follows:

a) Sixteen persons external to the University (“Lay Members”);
b) Two persons elected from among their number by the academic staff of the University;
c) Two persons elected from among their number by the non-academic staff of the University;
d) One person elected from among their number by the students of the University;
e) The Vice-Chancellor;
f) Up to two officers of the University, appointed by Council following consultation with the Chair and the Vice-Chancellor; and
g) The President of the University of Kent Students’ Union.

This page sets out the appointments procedures for members of the Council at the University of Kent. More information about the roles and responsibilities of Council members can be found here:

Further information for members of Council can be found here:

a) Lay Members

Lay members are non-executive, external members of the University Council. Where a vacancy exists for a lay member of the Council, the Lay Nominations Committee will consider, having regard to the balance of existing members on the governing body and the needs of the institution, how the vacancy should best be filled.

The Lay Nominations Committee may seek recommendations from members of Council or members of the University or it may choose to recruit by public advertisement or to employ recruitment specialists. All nominations and applications must be submitted to the Secretary of the Council.

Applications received by the Secretary of the Council as a result of advertisement will be put to the Lay Nominations Committee for consideration.

The Lay Nominations Committee will consider all nominations and/or applications submitted by the appropriate published deadline, and make such additional enquiries as it believes appropriate. It will consider, inter alia, whether the person[s] nominated or applying are qualified in accordance with Council’s Terms of Reference, and the needs of the Council and of the University in respect of particular expertise or experience. Qualified persons will be invited to the University for an interview with members of the Lay Nominations Committee. The Committee may either reject a nomination/application, or advise the person that their nomination will be recommended to the Council for approval at the next meeting of the Council.

The full Council will consider recommendations and supporting documentation.Any recommendation to invite an individual to serve as a lay member must be supported by the majority of the lay members.

Appropriate individuals may be considered for appointment in the first instance as external members with expertise on the sub-committees of Council. In due course and as vacancies in Council membership occur, external members of sub- committees may then be considered for appointment as lay members of Council, if they so wish.

b) Academic staff members
c) Non-academic staff members

The Secretary of the Council shall be responsible for the conduct of the election of academic and non-academic members of Council. The Secretary shall invite nominations, each supported by signatures of not less than six electors and the election shall be conducted by ballot of those entitled to vote as defined in Ordinance 3.

d) Student members
g) The President of the University of Kent Students’ Union (Kent Union)

The elected student representative on the Council shall be elected from and by the students of the University. Only those students in attendance at the University at the time of holding the elections shall be entitled to vote.Only those students in attendance at the University at the time of holding the election and who will be in attendance at the University during their period of office if elected, are eligible to stand for election.

Kent Union shall be responsible for the conduct of the election subject to the oversight of the Secretary of the Council and Council. The election shall be conducted by ballot of those entitled to vote.

The President of the University of Kent Students’ Union is a member of Council.

f) Two officers of the University

The two officers of the University are appointed by Council following consultation with the Chair and the Vice-Chancellor.

Terms of office

A member of the Council shall normally be appointed for a period of three years and eligible for reappointment normally for one further period of up to three years.

The Chair and Deputy Chair of Council shall be eligible for reappointment for two further periods of three years, subject always to a maximum period on Council of twelve years, with six years as Chair.

The term of office as members of Council of the Vice-Chancellor, the officers of the University and the President of the Students’ Union shall be for as long as they continue to occupy their respective positions unless removed in accordance with the Ordinances.

The term of office of the student member of Council shall be for one year and they shall be eligible for re-election once.




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Last Updated: 12/08/2020