University chief quits

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Lancaster University vice-chancellor Professor Paul Wellings has resigned, it was announced today.

He is leaving at the end of 2011 to return to Australia become vice-chancellor of Wollongong University, New South Wales.

Professor Paul Wellingshas been in the post for nine years, during which Lancaster has been ranked in the top 10 UK universities and in the top 125 in the world.

The university said that under his leadership the university has transformed its estate with an investment of more than £350m in InfoLab21, the Lancaster Environment Centre, the Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts, a new Sports Centre and 4,500 new residential rooms on campus. It added that the financial position and credit rating of the university has been greatly enhanced.

“Paul Wellings has been an exceptional leader over nine years at Lancaster. The university has been transformed and its academic reputation greatly enhanced” said Lancaster’s Pro-Chancellor, Bryan Gray.

“Paul has played an important role in many North-West regional bodies and on the national scene, especially with HEFCE and UUK. He has championed the work of the university on the national stage and made the university more outward looking. We are sad to lose such a creative and energetic leader and wish Paul Wellings every success in the future.”

“Lancaster University has begun a global search for a new Vice-Chancellor”, said Mr Gray.

Professor Wellings departs in December 2011 but will continue to lead the university in the meantime.