Leadership changes at the Higher Education Careers Services Unit (HECSU) and Graduate Prospects

March, 2017

Mike Hill has announced that he will retire from the HECSU and its subsidiary Graduate Prospects in the late summer after 17 years as the Chief Executive

In the years that he has been at the helm, Mike has led the transition from print publisher to multimedia organisation. Graduate Prospects now has a portfolio of 12 digital and print publications supported by market-leading student careers website Prospects with 2.3 million monthly unique users, and degree verification service HEDD.

Graduate Prospects is the only careers organisation to invest its profits back into education through its parent charity HECSU. Mike has championed investment in research, services and products to the benefit of the sector including the landmark Futuretrack (2006/11) project, which was the first study to track the experiences of students through university and into work and is seen as a landmark study.

'Switching the organisation from paper-based products to digital services has been at the heart of our strategy as we realised our ambition to be the student's partner throughout their journey in higher education and into the early stages of their career. Now it's time for me to pass the leadership on for the next phase in our development,' said Mike Hill.

Professor Mark E. Smith, Chair of the HECSU and Graduate Prospects Board, and Vice-Chancellor at Lancaster University said, 'Mike has been a positive force for change, transforming the organisation against a background of rapidly-changing technology to meet the demands of today's students, while supporting the higher education sector throughout. We offer Mike our deepest thanks and wish him all the very best for everything he has planned for the future. We will get a chance to celebrate Mike's outstanding contribution to our organisation and say thank you in the summer.'

Mike graduated with a degree in law from the University of Manchester in 1983 and worked for Guardian Media Group in Manchester before taking up his current role. He has held a number of board positions, including Chair of the National Association of Student Employment Services.

The Board has also announced that after working in the company for 20 years, Jayne Rowley, currently Deputy Chief Executive, will step up and take on the responsibilities as acting chief executive for at least a year from 1 July 2017. She is an expert in the provision of shared services to higher education, supporting providers in careers, employability, work experience and postgraduate study.

Professor Smith noted, 'Jayne's knowledge and experience of the company is second to none. Her passion for what we do is compelling, helping us forge vital relationships across the sector. She's a first rate executive and I'm delighted that she's agreed to step up.'

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