Champion for women in engineering to head Britain’s newest university

The trustees of the New Model in Technology & Engineering (NMiTE) have announced that Professor Elena Rodriguez-Falcon has been appointed chief executive of Herefordshire’s future university with immediate effect. 

Elena is also NMiTE’s Provost, and had been its acting CEO since May this year.  She said: “I am delighted and honoured to have the chance to lead one of the most exciting and innovative developments in engineering education in the UK and probably the world.

“Our innovative approach of hands-on, employer-inspired, learning-by-doing is already proving very motivating and highly effective with the 25 young people who, currently and over the next nine months, are helping us with the detailed design of NMiTE’s total student experience. 

“Their input, along with great employer support and insight, will see us well prepared for the Pioneer Cohort of our first 50 undergraduate students in September 2019.”

Dame Fiona Kendrick chair of the NMiTE Board of Trustees added: “Elena brings a visionary energy to NMiTE as we develop an approach to lifelong learning that addresses the needs of employers for both new work-ready talent and also programmes to up-skill and improve the productivity of existing engineering and technical employees.”

Professor Rodriguez-Falcon joined NMiTE from the University of Sheffield, where she had been Professor of Enterprise and Engineering Education. Elena joined Sheffield in 2001, having worked in industry for seven years.

She was the founder of University of Sheffield Enterprise (USE); Institutional Director of Learning, Inclusive Learning and Teaching; Director of Enterprise Education and also the Faculty of Engineering’s Director of Women in Engineering. In 2014, Elena stepped down from these roles to become Director of Communications and External Relations for the University’s Faculty of Engineering, a post she held until 2017.

Elena’s innovative approaches to education have merited recognition by the Higher Education Academy, where she is a principal fellow; the Royal Academy of Engineering; and Enterprise Educators UK (EEUK), to mention but a few.

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