Professor Madeleine Atkins CBE, FAcSS appointed as 9th President of Lucy Cavendish College

2 July 2018

Lucy Cavendish College, University of Cambridge, is delighted to announce the election of Professor Madeleine Atkins CBE, FAcSS as its ninth President, from October 2018.

The seven-year appointment will allow Professor Atkins to lead the College in its mission to provide an excellent academic education within the University of Cambridge to talented women over 21 at a time of life that suits them, and to promote and support academically excellent women in their research.

Professor Atkins’s background includes reading Law and History as an undergraduate at Cambridge University (Girton College), teaching in a large comprehensive school in Huntingdon, and completing a PhD and post-doctoral research contracts at the University of Nottingham.

Following various senior positions at Newcastle University, including Pro-Vice-Chancellor, she was Vice-Chancellor of Coventry University between 2004 and 2013. She then joined the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) as its Chief Executive in January 2014 retaining that post until March 2018.

Professor Atkins said:

“I am honoured to have been elected as the next President of Lucy Cavendish College and delighted to be joining its vibrant intellectual community of mature students, Fellows and staff. The College has a unique mission to fulfil – as important today as it was at its founding. I look forward to helping Lucy Cavendish build further on its success in achieving this mission.”

Dr Isobel Maddison, Vice-President of Lucy Cavendish College, said on behalf of the Governing Body:                                                                                                                                                                 

“We are delighted to welcome Madeleine to the College as its 9th President. She is a worthy successor to Jackie Ashley, who has done so much over the past three years to grow and re-position the college and its reputation.

Madeleine's experience at the universities of Coventry and Newcastle, and as Chief Executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, will be hugely beneficial to Lucy Cavendish throughout the period of her appointment. We are confident that she will be an inspirational President who will lead the College towards achieving its ambitious plans for the future.”

Lucy Cavendish College was founded in 1965 and last year celebrated its best academic results yet, achieving the highest spot in the Tompkins Table amongst mature colleges in Cambridge.


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About Lucy Cavendish

Lucy Cavendish is the only women's college in Europe exclusively for students aged 21 or over, and a unique part of the University of Cambridge. Its undergraduate and postgraduate students come from over sixty countries, and a wide variety of educational and professional backgrounds. Many have changed careers or overcome significant challenges in order to reach University. The College is particularly strong in Medicine, Law, Veterinary Medicine, Psychology, the Social Sciences and English.

Contact information:

Kate Coghlan, Communications & Marketing Manager, Lucy Cavendish College, University of Cambridge -

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