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Distinguished academic leader appointed University Centre Shrewsbury Provost

A distinguished academic with 35 years' experience of leadership in education has been appointed as University Centre Shrewsbury's Provost. In advance of the new academic year, Professor Anna Sutton has been selected for the senior role, heading up the management team at the University Centre.

She will work closely with the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Chester, alongside partners at Shropshire Council, to oversee the development of the institution.

The University Centre is being created by the University of Chester and Shropshire Council to offer new and varied prospects for students, Shropshire and beyond.

Since 2010, Prof Sutton has been Executive Dean of the Faculty of Education and Children's Services at the University of Chester, and Dean since 2004.

With Prof Sutton's guidance, the Faculty has developed an excellent reputation for teacher training and education. It was awarded an 'outstanding' grade in the most recent Ofsted inspection for all its primary teacher training programmes.

Prior to her role at the University of Chester, Prof Sutton held positions as a principal lecturer in higher education and as a headteacher of a primary school.

Prof Sutton has supported the development of University Centre Shrewsbury to date as Sponsoring Dean. She has long established links with Shrewsbury and Shropshire. For a number of years she has been a Freeman of the Shrewsbury Drapers' Company and has friends and acquaintances in the town and county.

Among her accomplishments is a range of international projects associated with Early Years initial teacher training and the education of teachers throughout their careers. These have included working in Sweden, America and Palestine.

Prof Sutton has also acted as an external examiner for programmes taught at universities across the UK, and has worked to advise and put in place initiatives to support national education policies. In addition, Prof Sutton is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Professor Tim Wheeler, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Chester, said: "Professor Sutton has made a substantial contribution to education to date, ensuring excellence on a regional, national and international scale, and is an outstanding appointment for University Centre Shrewsbury.

"Having previously taken a leading role in its development as the Sponsoring Dean, she has embraced the commitment to creating a distinctive institution that aims to bring a range of benefits for students, Shropshire and further afield.

"Her broad experience, leadership and vision will ensure that the University Centre continues to develop in the best way possible.

"I am delighted to share the news of Professor Sutton's appointment and welcome her in her new post."

Prof Sutton said: "At University Centre Shrewsbury we are creating an excellent experience for our students. We are developing a curriculum and research partnerships to have a significantly positive impact locally, regionally and nationally.

"There is enormous potential to build on this beginning and I look forward to continuing to work with our partners.

"A university in Shrewsbury has been a long time in the making, and I am extremely privileged to be able to be part of the team making history with the establishment of this institution. I have huge affection for Shrewsbury and Shropshire, and I am utterly committed to this new venture at University Centre Shrewsbury."

University Centre Shrewsbury's first students embarked on postgraduate courses in autumn 2014 and undergraduate students will be welcomed to the institution from Sunday 27th September.

Councillor Claire Wild, Shropshire Council's Cabinet Member for University Centre Shrewsbury, added: "On behalf of Shropshire Council I would like to welcome Professor Sutton to University Centre Shrewsbury and wish her every success in her new role. I'm very much looking forward to working with her as the Provost."

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