University of Southampton appoints Lord Patel as Chancellor


Our Bureau

Southampton, UK

Lord Patel of Bradford, along with Justine Greening have been appointed as Chancellors of the University of Southampton. This is the first time the university has appointed dual Chancellors, with the pair succeeding comedian Ruby Wax.

The Chancellor is the principal lay officer of the University, with a key feature of this ambassadorial and ceremonial role involving presiding over degree ceremonies at graduation.

Lord Patel began his career as a social worker, later moving into academia and government roles relating to health, education and social care. He was made an OBE in 1999 for services to ethnic minority health issues. In 2018, Lord Patel was appointed Chair of Social Work England, the regulator for child, family and adult social workers in England.

Lord Patel is Chair of the India Business Group and already has links to the university, as a valued patron for The India Centre for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development. He was awarded an honorary degree in 2018.

Lord Patel said: “I am delighted to take up this ambassadorial role at the University of Southampton and I will do my very best to contribute to the university’s continuing development, growth and success. I have always been hugely impressed with the world-class research that takes place here and the impact it has globally. I look forward to engaging with staff, students and alumni to learn even more about this remarkable institution.”

Professor Mark E. Smith, Vice-Chancellor, said “I look forward to working with our dual Chancellors in support of our growth and continued success. They bring expansive knowledge, insight and networks in areas of deep interest to us and a clear and welcome interest in connecting with the people who are at the heart of our world-class university.”

Sir Ian Diamond, Chair of University Council, added: “I am delighted to confirm the appointment of Justine Greening and Lord Patel of Bradford as our dual Chancellors. They bring an extraordinary wealth of combined experience, expertise and dedication in areas such as mental health, social mobility and equality, which are also of great importance to the university community.

“They will each play an immensely positive role as we move forward with our ambitious strategy.”

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