LaGuardia Community College
Certain she wanted to be a veterinarian from an early age, Catherine Reid's childhood pastimes included giving kidney transplants to her stuffed animals ("all successful"). Dr Reid has been named acting director of the veterinary technology programme at LaGuardia Community College of the City University of New York. It is a job she has been working towards all her life. "Instead of playing with dolls, I had a pet dog that was my guinea pig. I would use paper bags to make casts, and ziplock bags and fishing tubing to make IVs (intravenous tubes)." Dr Reid studied for an undergraduate degree in animal science at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville and a PhD in veterinary medicine at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. She then crossed the Atlantic to study for a doctorate in biomedical technology at the Freie Universitat Berlin. On graduation, she won an Alexander von Humboldt postdoctoral fellowship to pursue research on the Asian elephant at the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research. Dr Reid said she hoped to use her role to open her students' eyes to research possibilities. "They already know about laboratory research in pharmaceutical companies," she said. "I want to show them that a whole other world of research exists and where they can fit into that picture."
An academic with over 30 years of experience in his field has been given a fellowship by the British Association for Sport and Exercise Science. Lars McNaughton, who has just joined Edge Hill University as professor of sport and exercise sciences, studied for a diploma in teaching at the Nedlands College of Advanced Education in Australia. He stayed on to complete a graduate diploma in recreation and an undergraduate degree in education before taking a master's and a PhD at the University of Oregon. Prior to joining Edge Hill, he was head of the School of Health Sciences at Bond University in Australia, which he joined after seven years at the University of Hull as head of the department of sport, health and exercise science. Professor McNaughton said the fellowship "should be considered an accolade that individuals aspire to and I'm proud I have been given this award. I'm glad to be back in England at a university where I will be able to carry out a lot more research. I'm feeling very positive about what I can achieve."
Newman University College
A sports psychologist from Newman University College in Birmingham has been appointed to a leading role with the British canoeing team, which hopes to challenge for a gold medal in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Jonathan Smith moved from Loughborough College to become a senior lecturer in sports psychology at Newman in 2008, where he also leads the master's programme in physical education and sports studies. A former county-level rugby player, he has worked with athletes in fields ranging from netball to clay-pigeon shooting. He spent the past three years supporting the canoe slalom junior development squad, who are aged 14 to 18, make the transition into the Olympic development programme. He has now taken on the role of performance psychologist for the Olympic squad. "Some elements of the work are generic," said Dr Smith, "such as building motivation and a commitment to training, but some are specific to particular sports. In canoeing, for example, you never compete on exactly the same course twice, so you can't rely on timings but can only measure yourself against others. I'll be helping the whole team to create the right environment and climate, but I will also teach individuals how to cope with pre-race anxieties, deal with mistakes and so on."
University of Wollongong in Dubai
An expert in the application of IT to construction who served as pro vice-chancellor for research and development at Salford University is to become president of the University of Wollongong in Dubai. Ghassan Aouad was raised in Lebanon and obtained a BSc in civil engineering at Beirut Arab University before starting work as a volunteer part-time physics teacher and a site engineer overseeing the construction of Unicef-sponsored schools. In 1985 he moved to Loughborough University for a MSc and then a PhD, which led to work as a lecturer in the department of civil engineering. Professor Aouad then spent almost two decades at Salford University, rising from research Fellow to professor of construction IT before moving into senior managerial roles including director of the Institute for the Built and Human Environment, dean of the Faculty of Business, Law and the Built Environment and, from 2008, pro vice-chancellor. He sees his new post as a return to his roots, where he "hopes to bring innovations from the British higher education system such as a culture of entrepreneurship and making sure that ideas are exported through commercialisation". Professor Aouad said that he hoped to expand student numbers and to bring in new disciplines at the Dubai offshoot of the private Australian university.
Adrian Friend has been named course leader for the undergraduate degree in architecture at the Norwich University College of the Arts. He joins from the University of Nottingham, where he was head of second-year studies for the undergraduate degree in architecture.
Graham Caie, chair of English language at the University of Glasgow, has been elected vice-president (arts and letters) of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. He is currently vice-principal and clerk of senate at Glasgow.
The University of Oxford has appointed Ngaire Woods the inaugural dean of its Blavatnik School of Government. Professor Woods was academic director of the school.
The Higher Education Academy has named Stephanie Marshall its deputy chief executive (research and policy). She joins from the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education, where she is director of programmes.
The University of Melbourne has appointed Helen Sullivan director of the Centre for Public Policy. She joins from the University of Birmingham, where she was professor and director of research and knowledge transfer in the School of Government and Society.