Amber Miro, 1965-2012

March 29, 2012

An expert in the benefits new technology can bring to students, Amber Miro was regarded by colleagues and friends as "unfailingly positive".

Ms Miro joined the London School of Economics as an IT training specialist in 1999. Within two years she was promoted to training manager, and by 2005 she was assistant director of IT services.

Jean Sykes, chief information officer at the LSE, said Ms Miro had a "tough role" at the institution, "yet remained calm, patient, responsive, communicative and irresistibly pleasant, no matter how awkward or difficult the request or requester".

Ms Miro received a degree in education and environmental biology from what was then Oxford Polytechnic and an MEd from the University of Manchester. Much of her early career was spent developing teaching talent, including work as course leader for university teacher training programmes run by the British Council in Mexico.

Jeni Brown, training, web and social media manager at the LSE, sought Ms Miro's advice when she joined the institution and recalls being told of the vital importance of spending time with staff.

"It was a great lesson, and one which she lived. No matter how busy she was, she always had time to lend an ear and support to her staff."

In her role at the LSE, Ms Miro demonstrated a keen interest in students' technology needs and helped introduce LSE Mobile, a smartphone application that provides access to university information while on the move.

Outside the university, Ms Miro contributed to various groups working on key IT issues in higher education, and in 2010 was appointed chair of the Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association.

Ms Sykes said Ms Miro was always one of the first to experiment with new gadgets and had almost instantly learned how to use an iPad when the device was first released.

She said: "My abiding memory of meetings with her was where she had a coffee in one hand and her beloved iPad in the other."

James Harvey, departmental manager of IT services at the LSE, also paid tribute to Ms Miro, recalling how in 2009, after the birth of his first child, he had sent a text message to Ms Miro at 3am to inform her that he was about to start his paternity leave.

"What response would you expect from your boss at that hour? Amber sent me the most heartfelt and sincere congratulations, followed by the fastest-delivered flowers I have ever experienced in my life," he said.

Amber Miro died on 6 March after battling with cancer. She is survived by her partner, Lizzie.

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