Swindon College appoints new Principal

By Anita Jaynes on 20 June, 2016

The Governing Body of Swindon College has appointed a new Principal and Chief Executive to take over from Andrew Miller, who retires at the end of August.

Steve Wain, who is currently the Principal of Shrewsbury College, will join Swindon College on 25 August 2016.

During his four years at Shrewsbury College, Steve has led the college through a period of revival that has included significant changes to the college estate.

Classed as a “coasting college” in 2012, Shrewsbury College achieved its best ever Ofsted inspection result in 2014, and applications to the college for entry in September 2016 are at a five-year high, following three consecutive years of growth.

Steve has been instrumental in bringing the two Shrewsbury colleges together, and regards their impending merger on 31 July as a major achievement.

Steve said he is very much looking forward to his new role at Swindon College.

“Swindon is a vibrant town, with a growing economy and excellent future prospects,” said Steve.

“Swindon College is playing a crucial role in support economic growth and in providing much needed education and training for the wider community.

“I am already highly impressed with the college students, and am thrilled to be coming to work with such a dedicated and positive group of colleagues.”

Steve has been married to Hilary, known as Hil, since 1992, and they have two children, Luisa, 23,  and Naomi, 21. He has worked in the south of England for most of his career, at colleges in London, Hampshire and Gloucestershire.

Current Principal Andrew Miller joined the college in January 2010, with a clear remit to lead the improvement in the quality of teaching and learning, enhance the student experience and to bring about financial stability.

The 11,000-student college had received an “inadequate” grading in 2007, and was rated “satisfactory” in 2009.

Under Andrew’s leadership, in February 2013 Swindon College was judged by Ofsted to be Outstanding. It was the first college in the South of England  – and only the second college nationally – to be judged Outstanding under the tougher new inspection regime.

Ofsted inspectors noted at the time: “Leadership and management of the college are outstanding. Leaders and managers have successfully created a culture of respect and ambition, and have improved the quality of the college’s provision in a comparatively short time.”

Andrew has also managed to improve the financial position of the college since 2010 which has included investment in its North Star campus.

Andrew said: “I am pleased to be able to leave the College in such an excellent position, knowing that colleagues are able to continue providing the excellent standards of teaching and learning for which Swindon College has become renowned. I have enjoyed the role immensely and will miss the students and staff. FE colleges are so important to the communities they serve”

The college’s Chair of Governors, Rob Beale, said:  “The governing body, staff and students owe Andrew a huge debt, and we know that he will continue to be successful in whatever he does next.

“We are delighted to have recruited a Principal and Chief Executive of Steve’s calibre and experience, and are looking forward to supporting him in building on Andrew’s great work, and taking Swindon College on to the next phase in its development.”