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Lay Member of Keele University Council

Keele University
Staffordshire (GB)
The role is voluntary, but all reasonable expenses will be paid.
Closing date
22 May 2024

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Charity and not for profit, Education
Salary band
Contract type
Short term role
Part Time
Where will they be working
Not applicable

Job Details

Who we are

Keele University is an ambitious, leading university, a charity and not for profit organisation.  Founded in 1949 by Lord Lindsay, former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, Keele has always been different from other universities – and 75 years later, we still are.  Ever since our inception, we have been pushing boundaries to create an impact locally, nationally and globally.  We are world renowned for the breadth of our teaching, our outstanding student experience, and our cutting-edge research tackling some of society’s most urgent problems, including ageing, global health and renewable energy.  We are proud of our close-knit campus community in Staffordshire and of our strong local, regional and global connections.  We embody a culture of engagement, inclusion and cohesion and this allows our staff and students to flourish and provides the skills and opportunities to thrive in an ever-changing world.


What we need – the role

There has never been a more compelling time to become a part of our Council as we deliver our strategic plan, ‘Our Future’. The plan provided Keele with an opportunity to re-state our purpose and founding commitments, as well as a road map for direction that will ensure our future success.  Our ambitions are high – and the skills, breadth of experience and judgement of our Council is crucial to our continued success.


Our Council sits at the top of our decision-making structure and is collectively responsible for establishing our strategic direction, ensuring we are accountable to our stakeholders, ensuring our academic governance is effective and overseeing the management of our finances, property and general business.  Our diverse Council membership comprises external Lay Members/Trustees, staff, students and our most senior executives.

As a Lay Council Member/Trustee, you will play a pivotal role in bringing independent judgement and external experience to the formulation of University strategy and policy; in providing new thinking, ideas and specialist knowledge; and in holding the University’s senior leaders to account. 


Our lay members normally commit around 10 to 12 days per year to Council business.  This includes attending all meetings of Council (normally five a year), the annual strategy day, which is normally in April and membership of one of the Council committees.


The role description can be found at


Why we need you

We are looking for new Lay Members to join our Council and to reflect the communities we serve.  We are looking for a strong and confident communicator, with the ability to listen critically, think strategically, debate constructively and offer supportive challenge.  You must show a commitment to our core values of collegiality; ambition; accountability; respect; fairness and consistency and the ability to work within a framework of collective decision-making. 


You may bring professional expertise in areas that will enhance our current Council membership – for example, Higher Education, legal or national government exposure, or an entirely fresh perspective from your own experience.  You may bring previous experience as a board member or trustee, but this isn’t essential.


What we can offer you

We will provide you with a programme of induction and training and a mentor to build on your existing skills and knowledge.  You will have the opportunity to develop professional networks with other Council members and gain board experience at the highest level in a large and complex organisation.  You will quickly be able to influence and support the future development of our University, therefore, having a major impact on our students, staff and regional communities.


In our 2022 externally led Governance Effectiveness Review, there were several elements of our governance arrangements that were deemed to be sector leading, including the positive culture of support and challenge exhibited across the Council and the ingrained appetite for continuous development and improvement.


The role is voluntary, but all reasonable expenses will be paid


How to apply

To apply please submit your CV and a covering email.

Closing date: Wednesday 22nd May 2024, 12 noon.

Interviews will be held on Friday 7th June 2024.


Keele University values equality and diversity across our governance structures and ensuring our committees are reflective of the diversity of our community.  In support of these commitments, the University welcomes applications from women, individuals of Black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds and other under-represented groups.


Company info
Keele University
United Kingdom

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