Alumni Board Meeting Minutes

Thursday 30 March 2017


Richard Mayson, in the Chair

Mark Ansell, Susan Belcher, Elizabeth Gillott, Guilherme Guimaraes, Sally Jones, Mina Kasherova, Claire Kilner, Martin McKervey, Sir Peter Middleton, Trevor Richards, Abdi Suleiman


Kirsty Woodhead

In attendance

Lucy Arnold, Michelle Moore, Emma Packham, Sara Qutub, Claire Rundstrom, Miles Stevenson, Kirsty Woodhead

Ahmad Hillman (visitor from University of Technology, Malaysia)


Susanna Chiu, Chris Furness, Alison Gardner, Alison Hope, Emily Knights, Keith Layden, Claire McGourlay, Kathryn Riddle, Tom Slatter

1. Introduction

The Chair welcomed all to the meeting, including Honorary President, Sir Peter Middleton, and Ahmad Hillman who was visiting from the University of Technology, Malaysia.

2. Minutes and matters arising

The minutes were approved as a correct record of the last meeting.

It was agreed: that Mark Ansell and Guilherme Guimaraes would form the communications sub-group to liaise with DARE when required.

The Board received a written report from the Vice-Chancellor who was unable to attend the meeting due to an overseas trip.

3. Alumni Ambassadors: International groups and grant funding proposals

The Board heard a presentation from Sara Qutub, International Alumni Development Manager in the Development, Alumni Relations and Events office.

In the presentation, Sara outlined her aim to provide a global network of contacts, including developing some alumni groups, for the office and the University at large. She also gave an update on the planned activities for Charter Day 2017, with a focus on a communicated message about the heritage of the University around the actual charter day in May and then alumni event activities taking place in September with the 5 alumni groups that are going to be piloted. This was followed by group discussions including how the Alumni Board could help with the initial set up of the global networks.

It was agreed: that the Alumni Board would allocate £5,000 from the Convocation Fund to the five groups to help with any start-up costs.

4. Philanthropy at the University of Sheffield

The Board heard a presentation from Michelle Moore, Deputy Director of Advancement in the Development, Alumni Relations and Events office.

In the presentation, Michelle gave an overview of fundraising at the University. She reported that so far this financial year, over £7.5m had been raised in funds, and almost £5m received in cash.

Michelle gave an update on the University’s current campaign to raise £2m for the Sheffield Scanner. So far over £430k had been raised, and over 235 people had signed up to participate in The Big Walk which would take place on 30th June 2017.

It was agreed: that an invitation would be issued to every Board member to participate in The Big Walk, as it would take place the day after the next board meeting.

The Board were encouraged to get involved and support both fundraising at the University and the Sheffield Scanner campaign in any way they could.

5. Stewardship at the University of Sheffield

The Board heard a presentation from Lucy Arnold, Stewardship Officer in the Development, Alumni Relations and Events office.

6. Events

The Board received a full list of upcoming events for 2017.

It was agreed: that Mark Ansell would attempt to get an Alumni Board team together for the quiz taking place in Sheffield on 15th May 2017.

7. Closed Departments

Miles Stevenson, Director of Advancement in DARE stated that the only departments to have ever closed were Applied Mechanics, Classics, Geology, Materials, and Mining Engineering.

The Department of History had been awarded an Alumni Fund departmental grant to try and establish contact with alumni from the Department of Classics, and to offer them a home in their department.

It was agreed: that Richard Mayson would report back to the alumnus who contacted him regarding the Department of Classics.

8. Convocation Lecture

Richard Mayson reported that the lecture would take place in 2018. He hoped that prior to the lecture there would be a forum for alumni attending to ask questions to the Board.

It was agreed: that a speaker would be invited to deliver the lecture and suggestions for potential future speakers were requested. Funding for the lecture would be allocated from the Convocation Fund.

9. Distinguished Alumni Awards

The Board discussed the four nominations in detail.

It was agreed: that Claire Rundstrom would contact the Vice-Chancellor to advise him of the Board’s recommendations.

10. A.O.B

Miles Stevenson reported that the University of Sheffield had recently won the Varsity for the fifth consecutive year.

Miles Stevenson reported that the University of Sheffield had been ranked 3rd out of 122 Universities in the Times Higher Student Experience Survey. It was also the most highly rated students’ union in the country and was the top Russell Group University listed in the survey.

11. Date of next meeting

29th June 2017, Management School, University of Sheffield

12. Future agenda items

Alumni engagement and support for the Students Union