The chief executive of the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service is set to become the next head of the higher education quality watchdog, it has been announced.
Anthony McClaran will take over as chief executive of the Quality Assurance Agency in October, when the organisation’s current head, Peter Williams, retires.
Mr McClaran, who has been at the helm of Ucas for the past five years, began his professional career at the University of Warwick, where he worked in central administrative roles, before moving to the University of Hull as academic registrar in 1992. In 1995, he joined Ucas as head of the academic services and development department. He was promoted to deputy chief executive in 1996.
Sam Younger, chairman of the QAA board, said: “The QAA is an established and highly respected organisation that has, with Peter Williams as its chief executive, fulfilled an essential and unique role in UK higher education and internationally.
“Anthony McClaran joins us as our work across the UK is changing, and I am confident that, under his leadership, the QAA will continue to go from strength to strength.”
Mr McClaran is also chair of the council of the University of Gloucestershire, a director of the Inspiring Futures Foundation and serves on the governing bodies of the National Star College and three schools.
Commenting on his appointment, Mr McClaran said: “I feel privileged to be asked to lead the QAA at this time of significant challenge for UK higher education and the wider society that it serves.
“There is an increasing need to engage with students and to assure the public that academic standards are being maintained and enhanced. I look forward to building on the QAA’s position as an influential voice in higher education policy and practice through working with the UK’s remarkably strong, diverse and vibrant higher education institutions.”