'It will be an exciting and challenging time... and we will have a key role'

December 1, 2006

Rick Trainor will take over as president of Universities UK at a crucial time for the vice-chancellors' group

As the next president of Universities UK, Rick Trainor, principal of King's College London, will take the helm of the vice-chancellors' lobby group at a crucial time.

He will succeed Drummond Bone, Liverpool University's vice-chancellor, on August 1, 2007, and will hold the post for two academic years until 2009 - when the pivotal review of the £3,000 cap on tuition fees is planned.

"It will be an exciting and challenging time for higher education and I know UUK will have a key role in influencing and shaping any changes to come," Professor Trainor said.

He has supported a lifting of the cap in the past. "Otherwise, in due course, the current minority of voices urging Britain's leading universities to privatise will become a majority influence," he said in his first oration at King's.

Professor Trainor, a social historian, become the first vice-chancellor to switch from a post-1992 institution, Greenwich University, to a pre-1992, when he took over at King's in 2004. He is the son of a US businessman and studied at Brown and Princeton universities. After leaving Oxford University in 1979, where he had been a Rhodes scholar, Professor Trainor took a professorship at Glasgow University, where he later became vice-principal. In 2000, he became vice-chancellor of Greenwich.

Professor Trainor is UUK treasurer and a member of the health and social care, and research committees. His nomination for president was unopposed.

He is married to Glasgow academic Marguerite Dupree, and has two children.

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