London Met appoints pioneering academics as Pro Vice-Chancellors for Student Experience

Professor Nona McDuff OBE and Professor Marcia Wilson will transform student and academic services to ensure student success.

Date: 18 May 2023

London Metropolitan University is delighted to announce the appointment of Professor Nona McDuff OBE and Professor Marcia Wilson, as Pro Vice-Chancellors (PVCs) for Student Experience. 

Professors McDuff and Wilson will each take charge of different aspects of the University’s student and academic administrative services, contributing to the development and implementation of the University’s mission and strategy. 

London Met’s Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, Professor Lynn Dobbs, welcomed Nona and Marcia, "I am thrilled to welcome two of the most widely respected equity and diversity champions in higher education into the London Met community. They’re joining a university with a strong commitment to this agenda and to the success of our students. This is a very exciting moment, and I can’t wait to see the impact they will have.” 

Professor Nona McDuff OBE 

With over 30 years of experience in higher education, Professor Nona McDuff is widely acclaimed for her work to drive change and create inclusive and accessible courses that meet the needs of students at institutions with diverse student populations.  

Throughout her career, Nona has led the debate on race, racism and the academy, shining a light on the degree awarding gap and the need for a whole institution approach to improving social mobility. Nona has advocated for leadership action, policy change and co-creation. In 2017, she was awarded an OBE for her work in this area and received the Guardian Teaching Excellence award.  

As well as creating change within institutions, Nona has helped shaped the national agenda. She is a National Teaching Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a member of the Advance HE Peer Review Quality Committee and has participated in several sector committees such as the UUK’s Racial Harassment Advisory Group and the ministerial group to create step changes in social mobility. Nona currently sits on the British Council’s Education Advisory Group and on the Board of the National Saturday Club.  

Before joining London Met, Nona was the founder and first Director of Student Achievement at Kingston University, and more recently served as Pro Vice-Chancellor, Students and Teaching, at Solent University. 

Nona’s research interests include inclusive curricula and differential attainment, and she is regularly invited to speak on disability and widening participation nationally and internationally.  

Professor Marcia Wilson 

Professor Marcia Wilson is a multiple award-winning academic leader and researcher who has pioneered programmes to address inequalities in the education sector. Her work has been used by Universities UK (UUK) and London Higher in their initiatives aimed at tackling racism in higher education.   

Before her most recent role, as The Open University’s (OU) Dean of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Marcia spent more than a decade at the University of East London where she was the founding Dean of their Office for Institutional Equity (OIE), the first department of its kind in the UK and has been used by institutions across the country as the blueprint when planning their own interventions. 

Before founding the OIE at the University of East London, Marcia held various roles including Head of the University’s School of Health, Sport and Bioscience and Head of the Sport Science department. She spent 10 years studying and working in the USA. She has also worked for eight years in sport psychology at the Football Association and with the Rugby Football Union with elite women’s teams and coaches. 

Marcia is a regular speaker on Advance HE’s ‘Aurora’ programme and is Academic Lead at the OU for the ‘100 Black Women Professors NOW!’ programme created by the Women’s Higher Education Network. She is regularly invited to speak on building anti-racist institutions and women in leadership.

Providing all our students with the best possible experience 

Commenting on their appointments, London Met’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) Professor Julie Hall said: “Everything we do at London Met is focused on ensuring our students have the best possible experience and realise their full potential, regardless of their background. 

“Although we initially only intended to appoint one person to this role, we were so pleased to have two candidates as widely respected as Nona and Marcia interested in joining our community, that we decided on a joint appointment to help us accelerate our plans in this area.” 

Ensuring every student thrives 

As Pro Vice-Chancellors for Student Experience, Nona and Marcia will be responsible for a range of areas including graduate employment outcomes, student support, student administration, the Students’ Union, academic quality, engagement monitoring and work-based learning. They will be leading the development and implementation of strategy, policy and practice across these services to help achieve our strategic aims including the Student Partnership Agreement and The Student Minds Charter. 

Professor McDuff started at London Met on 3 April, and Professor Wilson will join the University on 1 September. 

Portrait pictures of Professor Nona McDuff OBE and Professor Marcia Wilson