Professor Kelleher leaves after less than two years at Uclan, having joined from Manchester Metropolitan University in summer 2013.
Uclan operates a group structure, with its vice-chancellor sitting beneath a group chief executive. Richard Hext is the current Uclan group chief executive, having replaced Malcolm McVicar, who retired in August last year.
David Taylor, chairman of the Uclan board of governors, said: “I speak for the board, and indeed the entire university, when I say that we are very sorry to be losing Professor Kelleher.
“Gerry has had a major positive impact on the university since his arrival and our most recent student recruitment numbers demonstrate the excellent job he has done. I am sure I speak for everybody when I say that we wish Gerry all the best for the future.”
Professor Kelleher said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Uclan. I know that I leave the university in good health and with a strong management and academic team in place.”
A recruitment process to identify a new vice-chancellor “would be undertaken in due course”, the university said.
Mr Taylor has recommended to the board that Mike Thomas, the current deputy vice-chancellor (academic), be appointed to act as interim vice-chancellor, supported by Robin Pollard, the deputy vice-chancellor (international), who will take on additional responsibilities.