Prof Daniel Khan Interview

12 September 2013

Prof Khan, welcome to St Patrick’s.  I believe you have just joined our College after a successful time as Principal at Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education and after serving as Chief Executive of the Open College Network in London. Please tell us more about your career to date.

I started my career as a Chartered Certified Accountant working in public practice and then moved into industry. I have also lectured in taxation at the University of Westminster.  I held a variety of jobs in financial management, culminating in a period as Financial Director of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). After this I decided to broaden my managerial experience and accepted a post as Deputy Principal of York College. I then became Principal at Grimsby.

You have been in situ for one week now.  Could you share with us your first impressions of St Patrick’s and the GUS Group?

I have been extremely impressed by the phenomenal rate of growth at St Patrick’s during the past twelve months. That growth is likely to continue this year, according to our projected enrolment figures. I have also been impressed at how the staff at St Patrick’s have coped with such rapid change, including relocation to new premises in New Court.  Providing opportunities for students from such a wide range of backgrounds is both challenging and at the same time very rewarding. Being part of the GUS group is beneficial to us in terms of the economies of scale which the Group brings to its associated colleges.

St Patrick’s has recently experienced a period of rapid growth. As the new Principal, what are your aspirations and ambitions for the College in the next few years?

My aim is to ensure that St Patrick’s provides a high quality learning experience for our students so that they can achieve success in their academic programmes.  I would like the College to be able to offer the full range of academic programmes, from HNDs to Master’s degrees. I hope we can develop a significant body of international students at the College, establish some key international partnerships, and undertake joint research projects with other colleges both in the UK and overseas.  I hope we can increase the numbers of international students in tandem with our continued drive to meet the needs of our local students.

And how do you visualise St Patrick’s College in 5 years’ time?

I expect St Patrick’s to have been granted taught degree awarding powers within 5 years, and to have a cohort of alumni, making a significant contribution to their local and national communities, and taking pride in having studied at St Patrick’s College.  I also expect the College to be contributing to debates and discourses about education policy both in the UK and overseas. Within the same timeframe I hope St Patrick’s will be respected by students and employers alike as offering high quality programmes leading to employability and an improvement in the quality of life of our graduates. I shall endeavour to raise our profile in London through sponsorship of events and building close links with our local communities and interest groups. 

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