Universities Wales Weekly Wrap Up – 8 July 2016

EU students and staff welcome at Welsh Universities – Kirsty Williams

In a statement issued on 5 July, the Education Secretary Kirsty Williams AM said that students and staff from across the European Union are welcome at Welsh Universities.

Addressing concerns raised in the aftermath of the referendum, she has set out how those from across the EU studying at universities in Wales are still valued and wanted members of the education community. The Education Secretary also praised EU staff who are vital to the Welsh higher education sector.

Kirsty Williams said:

“There is no escaping that the recent referendum has unleashed uncertainty and worry. In some cases it may have roused the spectre of racial tensions. I want to send a message loud and clear that students and staff from across the European Union are still welcome at Welsh Universities. Those already studying here, and those who are planning to come are still welcome, our places of learning are still there for you.

“Welsh universities will continue to recruit and teach students from across the world. The long, proud tradition of European students coming to Wales has helped us foster our relationship with many countries. There are thousands of people who have a special place for Wales in their hearts after studying here. Our country will remain a tolerant, accepting and safe place where people from any nation can peruse their academic ambitions. Let me be clear, we will not tolerate any form of racial abuse whether on our campuses or within the wider communities in which we are rooted.

“Lets not forget EU staff are vital to the operation of our universities. We attract some of the best minds from across Europe to teach here and importantly carryout research that will benefit the people of Wales, from developing life-saving medicines to clean energy. This will not and must not change. Our universities are central to our social and economic future and they thrive through the diversity of the people who come to them.

“The Welsh Government is determined to protect Wales’ reputation as a friendly and tolerant place to study and carry out world-class research. Whatever the long-term implication of the vote, we remain an outward looking and welcoming nation where we are committed to sharing knowledge across national borders.”


Assembly Committee Membership announced

The National Assembly for Wales Assembly Committee Members was published this week on the NAfW website.

Children, Young People and Education Committee

NDM6061 Elin Jones (Ceredigion)

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales, in accordance with Standing Order 17.3, elects:

Hefin David (Welsh Labour), John Griffiths (Welsh Labour), Julie Morgan (Welsh Labour), Llyr Gruffydd (Plaid Cymru), Mohammad Asghar (Welsh Conservatives), Darren Millar (Welsh Conservatives) and Mark Reckless (UKIP Cymru) as members of the Children, Young People and Education Committee.

Committee Chair: Lynne Neagle, AM

Economy, Infrastructure and Skills Committee

“NDM6064 Elin Jones (Ceredigion)

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales, in accordance with Standing Order 17.3, elects:

Hannah Blythyn (Welsh Labour), Hefin David (Welsh Labour), Vikki Howells (Welsh Labour), Jeremy Miles (Welsh Labour), Adam Price (Plaid Cymru), Mark Isherwood (Welsh Conservatives) and David J Rowlands (UKIP Cymru) as members of the Economy, Infrastructure and Skills (EIS) Committee.

EIS Committee Chair: Russell George, AM.

Committee remits

The Committee remits have been published here.


Cardiff Metropolitan University Appoints New Vice-Chancellor

Cardiff Metropolitan University has appointed Professor Cara Carmichael Aitchison, currently Vice-Chancellor of the University of St Mark & St John, Plymouth, to succeed Professor Antony Chapman who retires as Vice-Chancellor on 31 August 2016.


SPA Additional admissions assessments

As part of SPA’s National Expert Think Tank (NETT) on fair admissions, members considered the use of additional admissions assessments, such as tests, interviews, portfolios, and developed a framework for HE providers wishing to review or implement them as part of a fair admissions process.

Additional admissions assessments may be used to provide more information and context as part of holistic admissions decision-making. Their use may be for professional body, specialist requirements or selective reasons, but regardless of the approach, HE providers need to ensure they are transparent and professional in how and when such additional assessments are used.

The resource includes a step-by-step process for ensuring fair admissions, each of which has a set of ‘challenge questions’ for HE providers:

  • Preparation
  • Rationale
  • Assessment type
  • Impact assessment
  • Communication
  • Monitor and assure

This and the other resources from the NETT covering partnerships, tracking and monitoring, and communications with applicants, are available on the new SPA website: