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FutureLearn Names Advisory Board Members to Support its Growth

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FutureLearn, the digital learning platform, today announced the appointment of key industry leaders to an inaugural advisory board. Composed of leading figures across higher education, private and public sectors, the new advisory board will provide strategic guidance in support of the continuing growth and success of FutureLearn.

Chaired by Lord David Blunkett, the new advisory board members are:

  • Sir Michael Barber, Chancellor of the University of Exeter
  • Douglas Blackstock, President of the European Network for Quality Assurance in Higher Education
  • Professor Julia Buckingham CBE, Chair Of The Board Of Trustees at the Institute of Cancer Research
  • Kirstie Donnelly, MBE, Chief Executive Officer at City & Guilds
  • Andy Haldane, Chief Executive Officer of the Royal Society of Arts
  • Professor Steve West CBE, Vice-Chancellor, President, and Chief Executive of the University of the West of England, Bristol

The advisory board will support FutureLearn in its goal of becoming the global go-to platform for career based lifelong learning. In 2019, FutureLearn, together with its partners, launched some of the first online microcredentials, which have since been taken by tens of thousands of learners. Last year, the company announced plans to move into the B2B enterprise market and has been developing its course portfolio to cater to workplace professionals.FutureLearn expects the LifeLong Loan Entitlement to accelerate demand for stackable accredited courses in key skill gap areas.

The new advisory board members bring a wealth of knowledge and experience in areas that are closely aligned to FutureLearn’s mission tomake lifelong learning, reskilling and upskilling part of everyday life. The group’s collective insights from higher education, government and industry associations seek to ensure the continuing relevance of FutureLearn’s activities and develop initiatives that provide value-add to learners globally.

Commenting on the new advisory board, Lord David Blunkett said:

“I would like to extend a warm welcome to our new members to the FutureLearn Advisory Board. As FutureLearn continues its success in the digital learning space, I look forward to working with these talented individuals as we collectively draw down on our respective areas of expertise to provide strategic guidance that propels FutureLearn’s growth in the sector and provide access to education to all.”

Jo Johnson, Chairman of FutureLearn, said:

“With more than two-thirds of SMEs and nearly 90% of large companies facing skills shortages, FutureLearn can play a vital role in enabling the re-skilling and up-skilling that learners and employers are demanding. I’m delighted that Lord David Blunkett will chair this stellar advisory board, which will help FutureLearn fulfil its mission of widening access to education and generating great outcomes for learners from all backgrounds.”

The FutureLearn Advisory Board is due to convene for the first time in March 2023 and will meet at regular intervals throughout the year.

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