09/08/18 UPDATE: We won!
Following the action of students on campus, including a sit-in outside of the Vice Chancellor’s office and a large petition gaining over 300 signatures, the University have set up a working group.
The group will be dedicated to electing a Pro-Chancellor (Students) and to democratising the process of electing future chancellors.
Appointment of David Willetts as Chancellor
Statement from Amy Moran, Leicester Students' Union President:
The University of Leicester has recently announced former Universities and Science Minister David Willetts as its new Chancellor. As President of Leicester Students’ Union, I can’t express how disappointed I am in this appointment.
In 2010, Willetts oversaw the increase in university tuition fees to a maximum £9000 – an amount he stated as ‘fair and affordable’. In the last few years, this rise in tuition fees and personal debt has been linked to a 28% increase in the number of university students seeking counselling and represents a significant step towards the marketisation of education.
More disappointing still, is that in 2011, Willetts criticised feminism and the increase in working women for damaging the social mobility of working class men. The presence of middle class women and working class men are not mutually exclusive, and arguing so, reinforces the idea that middle class men should be the dominant post-holders, and it is up to the women and the working classes to fight over the rest. As an organisation that believes in equality and social justice, this appointment is at odds with our own principles and the HeForShe values of the University.
The timing of Willett’s announcement also neatly coincides with the release of his latest publication.
Please sign and share the petition below urging the University to reconsider its decision: