Professor Breakwell, who was appointed as Vice-Chancellor in 2001, has decided to step down at the end of this academic year on 31 August 2018.
She will then take a sabbatical to further her academic research for a semester and retire from the University on 28 February 2019. This timeframe will enable an orderly transition as the University prepares to start the search for a new Vice-Chancellor.
In recent months Prof Breakwell has been facing accusations of excessive pay. She is the UK’s highest paid vice-chancellor with a salary of £468,000, and has become the focus of criticisms of rising pay among university leaders.
Last week Dame Glynis had narrowly survived a motion of no confidence in the university’s senate, but more than 300 staff had called for her resignation.
Dame Glynis commented: “I will be standing down as Vice Chancellor on 31 August 2018. On that day, I will have been in post 17 years which is one third of the lifetime of the University.
“During that time, I have served the University to the best of my ability and will continue to do so until the day I leave office. Since 2001 the University has changed dramatically. It has almost tripled in size and is now among the top universities in the UK. It has had many great achievements in its first 51 years and it will go on to be even greater. Over the next few months, I hope to have occasions to thank the many friends and colleagues who have made this possible during my time here.”
Thomas Sheppard, Chair of Council, the University’s governing body, said: “Dame Glynis Breakwell has given outstanding service to the University of Bath, which has seen the University’s national and international profile grow enormously under her leadership.’