University Secretary

Ref: 5402

University of the Arts London


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Role Managed by:

Emma Cowan

Research Associate

t: 020 7340 6289


Primary Practice Group: Higher Education and Research

Salary & Benefits: Commensurate with experience

Closing Date: 05/12/2021

Formal Interview Date: mid-February 2022

University of the Arts London (UAL) is a world-leading creative university for teaching and research in art, design, fashion, communication and performing arts. UAL is made up of six renowned colleges: Camberwell College of Arts, Central Saint Martins, Chelsea College of Arts, London College of Communication, London College of Fashion and Wimbledon College of Arts.

UAL thrives because the world needs creativity. In a volatile era, we aim to find new ways to demonstrate the value of creative disciplines in our response to major forces such as the climate emergency, decolonisation and social equality. We are a top 30 UK university for research and performance-related knowledge exchange, top three for student and graduate start-ups, leading on public engagement and CPD. We use our knowledge, creativity and skills to work with partners, clients and communities to create positive impact.

We are now seeking a University Secretary to support the Court of Governors and University Executive Board to deliver a culture of governance excellence.  Reporting to the Chair of Court and to the President & Vice-Chancellor, the University Secretary will act as Clerk to the Court of Governors, will hold responsibility for UAL’s corporate governance, lead the Chair of Court, and President and Vice-Chancellor’s office, and act as UAL’s Senior Information Risk Officer. The University Secretary will provide expert and independent advice to the Chair of Court and other members and uphold the highest standards of governance.

The ideal candidate will have a wealth of knowledge of legislation, regulation, structures, policies and procedures relating to governance, together with affinity and empathy for the Higher Education sector and broad understanding of its current and future developments.  Such experience may have been gained beyond the Higher Education sector, in complex and highly regulated organisations. You will possess a demonstrable record of knowledgably advising and guiding senior Boards on governance and regulatory matters.  You will also be adept at managing multifaceted proposals through complex decision-making systems in a timely way, taking into account a variety of contributions and ensuring that implementation is planned.  A Company Secretary qualification is desirable but not essential.  The role calls for an individual with strong analytical and critical thinking skills, the ability to build trust and demonstrate discretion, strong people management skills, and the ability to work equally well on the strategic big picture as on day to day detail. You will share our values and will possess exceptional communication and relationship-building skills, representing UAL with a wide range of stakeholders. Like us, you believe that equality, diversity and inclusion are integral to thriving organisations and you will share our commitment to creating a university where we can all be ourselves and reach our full potential.

UAL aims to be an equal opportunities employer embracing diversity in all areas of activity and positively welcomes applications from black and minority ethnic and female applicants who are currently underrepresented at this level.

We are working to make UAL an anti-racist university and pledge that 30% of our staff will be people of colour by 2024.

Application is by submission of a full curriculum vitae and a covering letter of application, addressing the job description and person specification and including suitable daytime and evening telephone contact details.

The closing date for applications is midday (BST) on Sunday 5th December 2021.

For informal inquiries please contact Emma Cowan on


UAL is committed to creating diverse and inclusive environments for all staff and students to work and learn – a university where we can be ourselves and reach our full potential. We offer a range of family friendly, inclusive employment policies, flexible working arrangements and Staff Support Networks. We welcome applicants from diverse backgrounds, including race, disability, age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion and belief, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, and caring responsibility.

Perrett Laver believes that excellence will be achieved through recognising the value of every individual. A broad range of perspectives, backgrounds and opinions amongst our global community of colleagues is crucial in maintaining our culture of openness, intellectual curiosity, and creativity. We take an active role in supporting under-represented communities and groups in becoming better and more fairly represented in the leadership of all organisations. We also know that diverse and inclusive teams have a positive impact on our ability to identify, engage and secure candidates from these groups.

Our commitment to inclusion across race, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, identity, and experience drives us every day – for clients, for candidate identification and in the recruitment, development and retention of colleagues. 

To ensure inclusion on the basis of age, disability, ethnic or national origin, family circumstance, gender, gender identity, marital status, nationality, political or religious beliefs, race, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation, we would like to specifically invite applications from under-represented groups.


For a conversation in confidence, please contact Emma Cowen.

Should you require access to these documents in alternative formats, please contact Trinity Willett.

If you have comments that would support us to improve access to documentation, or our application processes more generally, please do not hesitate to contact us via


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