Executive Appointments

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ABE, the not-for-profit awarding body specialising in business qualifications, has appointed Rob May as its new CEO. Currently managing director of YMCA Awards, Rob will start his new role on May 8th 2017.

Keith Ramsay, Chairman, ABE, said: “We’re delighted that Rob will join ABE to strengthen our leadership team. He is a proven executive and leader in the global business to business education market, with more than 15 years of experience in the sector. Moreover, Rob is passionate about the power of education to transform lives and accelerate social change.”

Rob joins ABE just as it launches its updated qualifications portfolio which has been designed to equip learners with a strong core of business skills that can adapt to diverse business contexts.

He said, “I am very excited to have the opportunity to lead ABE when there are so many opportunities and challenges in the global education market. Our aim is to build an organisation which is leaning into the future, recognising the many changing ways that people teach and learn, but also showing respect to our own traditions and those of the study centres and partners we work with around the world.”

As the director of YMCA Awards, Rob led the awarding organisation’s transformation into a digitally-focused learning company, whilst growing its reputation and increasing its competitive edge.

His focus on creating value for customers through offering clever and effective learning solutions had led to numerous industry awards. In 2016, he led YMCA to be the first organisation to win the prestigious FAB award for innovation two years in a row.

Rob is looking forward to helping ABE develop innovative education for business people.  “ABE qualifications have opened doors for thousands of people, but its members are also facing ‘real time’ business challenges throughout their career. I’m interested in how we can inspire and engage ABE members to build their skills on-demand, and implement practical solutions to real organisational challenges," he said.

About ABE: ABE is a not for profit awarding body accredited by Ofqual. Established in 1973, it is dedicated to the intellectual, social and economic development of individuals and communities through the provision of relevant, high-quality, affordable business qualifications. It has an international footprint with key markets in the UK, Africa, the Caribbean, SE Asia and China. Its qualifications provide progression routes to Bachelors degree and Masters programmes worldwide.

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Secretary of State for Education Justine Greening today (11 April 2017) announced the appointment of Professor Julius Weinberg as next Chair of Ofsted.

As former Vice Chancellor of Kingston University and Deputy Chair of Ofqual, Professor Weinberg has had a wide-ranging career in the education sector.

Professor Weinberg has served as a board member of:

  • the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA)
  • London Higher, the umbrella organisation for higher education (HE) institutions in London
  • Access HE

He replaces interim Chair James Kempton and he will step down as Deputy Chair of Ofqual when he takes up his new role at Ofsted.

Education Secretary Justine Greening said:

Julius brings a wide range of experience from organisations in the education sector, and I’m pleased to welcome him to the role as the next Chair of Ofsted. I am confident he and Chief Inspector Amanda Spielman will form a strong partnership.

Professor Julius Weinberg said:

I am honoured to be asked to take on the role of Chair of Ofsted and look forward to working with Ofsted in its important work of raising standards and improving the lives of children and young people.

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The Eden Project and The Cornwall College Group have appointed a Professor of Education, Robert Barratt, as the first-ever Head of Eden Project Learning.
Robert BarrattEnvironmental education specialist Robert will take a lead role in establishing Eden’s expanding higher education programmes and learning and teaching activities in a far-reaching partnership between the Project and the College.
Robert was formerly Head of the School of Education and Professor of Education at the University of Gloucestershire. Prior to this he was Director of Education and Assistant Dean of Education at Bath Spa University. He has also held academic posts at the Universities of Oxford, Keele and Bath. 
Robert, who takes up his new post today (Monday March 20th), is a geographer and teacher by training and researches in the field of children's participation in environmental education.
Robert Barratt said of his new role: “I am delighted to be appointed as the Head of Eden Project Learning and to be joining such a talented team. This is a wonderful opportunity and privilege.
“The Eden Project and The Cornwall College Group are well placed to advance an inspirational and innovative global education offer. Our ambition is to attract the best students in the world and to provide an unrivalled education experience.”
Gordon Seabright, Managing Director of the Eden Project, said: “Robert has had a distinguished career in higher education spanning nearly 20 years. His passion for environmental education helped make him the perfect candidate for this exciting new role.  His appointment strengthens and develops our partnership with the College, enabling us to bring even more exciting educational opportunities to Eden and Cornwall.”
Raoul Humphreys, Acting Chief Executive and Principal at The Cornwall College Group said: “We welcome Robert with great enthusiasm and are looking forward to his impact on the beginning of an exciting new phase for Eden Project Learning.
“The relationship between The Cornwall College Group and Eden Project has blossomed over the years, providing learners with not only a groundbreaking destination in which to study, but leading, expert tuition. Robert’s arrival allows us to expand this offering further, which is great news for all those who travel from across the world to study at the Eden Project with The Cornwall College Group.”
Robert studied for his doctoral degree at the University of Sussex in the Faculty of African and Asian Studies, supervised by Professors Tony Binns (former President of the Geographical Association) and now Emeritus Professor Brian Short. At Oxford his doctoral supervision training was conducted by Professor Kathy Silva.
Robert’s research contribution spans almost 25 years. His initial PhD research developed innovatory and participatory approaches to researching young children’s experience of their local environment. He is currently researching the impact of the Anthropocene - Earth’s most recent geologic time period - on the school curriculum and children’s learning. Through this he is developing a theory: pedagogy of the particular
Over the last 20 years he has published extensively in the field of environmental education and has collaborated on large scale education research projects with colleagues from Australia, USA, Russia and Europe. He is currently involved in writing the new International Handbook on ChildhoodNature (Springer, forthcoming January 2018) with colleagues from the UK and Australia.
Robert is an active cyclist and has completed several long distance events for charity. He has already signed up for the Eden Classic mass-participation cycling event on May 7, which starts and finishes at the Project.

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In preparation for the launch of the Apprenticeship Levy in May 2017, 3aaa Apprenticeships have appointed two key figures from Derby at senior level, to drive further growth for the Derby-based Apprenticeship training provider.

The Apprenticeship Levy sees the biggest shift in Apprenticeships in the last 25 years and is set to revolutionise the industry.

Since founding in 2008, 3aaa Apprenticeships have built a network of over 8,000 employers across England and have delivered localised training to 16-18-year-olds starting a professional services career in Technology, Digital Marketing, Accountancy and Business Administration.

To continue the growth of both their company and the local and national economy, 3aaa Apprenticeships have heavily invested in their business by appointing influential key figures at a senior level.

Richard Gerver

Best-selling author, speaker, broadcaster and advisor, Richard Gerver will join 3aaa Apprenticeships as a Non-Executive Director on Monday 3rd April 2017.

Working with the likes of Google & Microsoft, Richard is widely regarded as one of the world’s most dynamic speakers.

As a former TED speaker, he has shared the stage with some of the world’s most influential people, including the Dalai Lama.

He still works in education globally and is recognised as one of the most significant voices in the sector having provided consultation to Prime Ministers, Governments and even the Hilary Clinton 2016 Presidential campaign.

His first book, ‘Creating Tomorrow’s Schools Today’ has become a seminal text around the world for those engaged in the transformation of education. His reach goes from universities through to policy makers.

With experience in leadership, human potential, change, creativity and education, he is a revolutionary addition to the 3aaa Apprenticeships board and his skills will enable the company to grow tremendously.

Derby has been his home since college and Richard is the proud recipient of an Honorary Doctorate in Education from the University of Derby.

Dawn Whitemore

An inspirational leader with over 25 years’ experience of senior level leading and operations within Education, will be joining the 3aaa Apprenticeship Levy Management division, as Managing Director, from Monday 3rd April 2017.

Dawn was previously Chief Executive of New College Nottingham, a £45 million business that supports over 20,000 learners annually. In addition, she has run her own consultancy business, working with the NHS, corporate clients and colleges.

She is renowned for developing high-performance teams that put the customer at the heart of every decision. Her ability to lead people and secure a strong following expands beyond her senior teams and into every role, uniting staff at all levels of the business by translating the vision and goals, thus ensuring both added value to the business and earning respect from all stakeholders.

With her commercial acumen, she has developed strong, lasting business partnerships which are built on trust, honesty and openness. This ensures that their business needs are met and are uncompromising on quality believing that sustainable success comes from providing outstanding quality, every time.

Dawn’s passion, commitment and expertise have helped her to make a significant contribution to the education sector and she will continue to do so through leading, managing and innovating the Apprenticeship Levy division of 3aaa Apprenticeships.

Di McEvoy-Robinson, Joint Owner of 3aaa Apprenticeships commented on the investment:

“This significant investment to our senior team and board will further strengthen 3aaa Apprenticeships to be the industry-leading provider of Apprenticeships across England.”

There are now over 40 3aaa Apprenticeship academies across England, all delivering high-quality Apprenticeships and delivering Apprenticeship Levy solutions.

To find out more, contact 3aaa Apprenticeships by telephone: 0844 504 3174, by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit their website: www.3aaa.co.uk

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LONDON, 14 March 2017 – Building on its considerable and sustained global presence, and as part of the ongoing expansion of its international team, VitalSource Technologies LLC has hired John Donovan as Managing Director, leading the Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific regions.

“John has many years of experience establishing and growing innovative businesses in higher education publishing and technology, and he will have responsibility for the continued growth of VitalSource’s business and the business of our partners across the region,” said Pep Carrera, VitalSource’s COO. “John inherits a fast-growing team in the U.K., Germany, Dubai, and Australia and will work closely with key regional partners to develop and implement innovative digital solutions for all levels of education.”

John Donovan
Donovan has extensive experience in publishing and technology, most recently serving as Director of Global Sales and Business Development for Epigeum, an online courseware provider with roots in Imperial College, London. Before that, Donovan spent 14 years with McGraw-Hill Education. In his last role as Managing Director of  Europe and South Africa, he led the acceleration of McGraw Hill's transition from a print publishing company to a provider of technology-enabled solutions.

“I feel fortunate to be joining such an innovative company with a passion for delivering immersive and engaging educational content,” said Donovan. “The shift towards a greater emphasis on student learning and measurement of outcomes presents a great opportunity for VitalSource to collaborate with higher education institutions to help them fulfill their digital teaching and learning potential.”

International Growth

Over the past 12 months, VitalSource has grown to serve 5.7 million unique users through its various content creation and delivery platforms. Today, one in four of those users are from outside the United States. 

Donovan’s addition to VitalSource represents only a portion of the growth of the company’s international organization. Recently Laura Annis was promoted to Customer Success Director and Jeni Evans to Business Development Director. In all, VitalSource has grown its global team by almost 50 percent, with 20 employees in the U.K. alone – and is currently recruiting to grow its marketing team.

Local expertise and focus allow VitalSource to work closely with key educational stakeholders. In 2016, it hosted industry events in London, Leeds, Dubai and Melbourne. Its 2017 series opens on 16 March with an event in London, bringing together more than 100 publishers, institutions and resellers. 

Earlier this year, VitalSource received its re-accreditation from the Learning and Performance Institute (LPI), an organization committed to raising the profile of workplace learning globally. 

About VitalSource |www.vitalsource.com  

VitalSource Technologies LLC., part of Ingram Content Group, is improving the learning experience by making it easier to create and deliver effective and affordable content. The preferred choice among educational institutions and companies for digital learning materials, VitalSource® helps over 1,000 educational content providers create and deliver seamless interactive learning experiences through its exclusive Bookshelf® platform to millions of learners at more than 7,000 institutions. Bookshelf users opened more than 20 million digital textbooks last year and read more than 2.4 billion pages.

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