Milton Keynes College has confirmed the appointment of a new Chief People Officer, Anne Allen, who says her top priority will be to broaden diversity among senior managers.
Anne comes to the College after five and a half years at city software company Xero. She says she wants to encourage more BAME (Black, Asian and minority ethnic people) and disabled candidates to come forward for jobs at the College, especially for senior managerial vacancies.
She says, "Making our leadership team more diverse is not just about ticking boxes or being seen to do the right thing, it’s actually about raising standards."
"If you only recruit from the same talent pool all the time you’re restricting yourself and will miss out on a lot of really talented people. The question isn’t whether it’s a good thing for the College as that is clearly the case."
She added: "It’s about working out how to reach more potential applicants from different backgrounds so that we see them as candidates whenever there’s a vacancy."
Anne also believes it is important for students to see a mix of managers at the College.
She says: "It’s been proved over and over again that students will allow themselves greater ambition if they see people who are like them in the top jobs."
"The student body reflects the make-up of the city and that means many learning here don’t come from traditional white British families."
"If those young people see that there really are opportunities open to people of similar backgrounds to them they will aim higher, and that’s what we want for all of our students."
College CEO and Group Principal, Dr Julie Mills said: "We’re delighted to welcome Anne to the College and have every confidence she will help to ensure that our management team accurately reflects the society in which we work."
"Her plans fit perfectly with our existing philosophy to be the broadest based institution we can be and to have a diverse and talented workforce to inspire our students."