CBE for Huddersfield Vice-Chancellor

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield, Professor Bob Cryan, has been awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday list

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield, Professor Bob Cryan, has been appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the Queen’s Birthday honours list for services to higher education.

He is the youngest Vice-Chancellor to receive a national honour.

Professor Cryan is an engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology. He has co-authored over 200 papers in the field of photonic communications and played an important role indeveloping engineering degree accreditation in the United Kingdom. He was the founding Chair of the Engineering Accreditation Board which is made up of all the Professional Engineering Institutions that are licensed by the Engineering Council to accredit academic programmes for both Chartered Engineer and Incorporated Engineer status. 

Appointed aged 42 as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield in 2007, he was the youngest Vice-Chancellor of a UK University.

Professor Cryan leads a University which combines internationally recognised research with outstanding teaching quality. He has focused the University on being an Inspiring, Innovative University of International renown and under his leadership Huddersfield has become the only University where all academic staff are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy.

Over the last five years, its staff have been awarded the highest number of the highly competitive National Teaching Fellowships for excellence in teaching. It has moved in to the top 10 for graduate employability; doubled research income; tripled the number of postgraduate researchers and tripled the number of international students such that there are now over 120 countries represented on campus. All this has been achieved at the same time as paying off all long term borrowings and moving the institution to the number one spot for financial security amongst mainstream Universities. But investment hasn’t stopped – over half the University estate has been either newly built or refurbished such that it is now in the top 10 for the quality of its buildings. The University itself has received external recognition for these successes and in 2012 it was named as the Times Higher Education Entrepreneurial University of the Year, in 2013 it received the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise and was named the Times Higher Education University of the Year and Professor Cryan himself received the inaugural Guardian Inspiring University Leader Award and earlier this year Huddersfield was named as the best University workplace in the Times Higher Education Best University Workplace Survey.

Responding to the announcement, Professor Cryan said: ‘I am deeply humbled and extremely grateful to be included in the Queen’s Birthday honours list and I receive the appointment as Commander of the Order of the British Empire as the leader of an amazing team here at the University of Huddersfield. Team Huddersfield comprises some 2,000 colleagues who have worked tremendously hard to transform the University and I am immensely proud of their achievements. It is a real privilege to be the Vice-Chancellor of my home town University and I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to all of my colleagues at the University for creating such a wonderful environment where students can pursue their dreams and go on to make a real difference in their chosen careers. We light fires of subject passion and inspire tomorrows’ professionals and that gives us all tremendous satisfaction.”

Chancellor of the University, Sir Patrick Stewart said: ‘Bob is an inspirational and transformational leader who has made an outstanding contribution to higher education, both nationally and internationally, as well as to the regional business sector and community. I am delighted that he has been made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen’s Birthday honours list in recognition of his achievements and as a friend I could not be prouder or more thrilled.’

Chair of the University Council, Chris Brown said: ‘Under Bob’s guidance the University has gone from strength to strength and its merits have been recognised by a series of prestigious awards. I am delighted that he has received this honour in recognition of the excellent leadership that he gives to our institution.’

President of the Students’ Union, Nosheen Dad said: ‘Bob is passionate about the University and our students. He has three degrees from the University of Huddersfield and he always wants to know how the University can move further forward. He is committed to empowering students – on one of my first days in office, Bob gave me his personal mobile phone number – what stronger signal of this commitment could there be? This national honour is thoroughly deserved.’

In the Queen’s Birthday honours approximately 1 person in every 600,000 of the UK population are appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire. Recent CBE recipients include Michael Crawford (2014), Nicholas Parsons (2014), Rowan Atkinson (2013), Tracey Emin (2013), Colin Firth (2012), Nigel Mansell (2012), Kate Winslet (2012), David Suchet (2012), Catherine Zeta Jones (2011) and Sheila Hancock (2011).

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