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Friday, 1 December, 2000, 00:19 GMT
University chiefs shed 'grey' image
Newcastle University
The new body will fight for improved university funding
University chiefs want to get rid of their "men in grey suits" image - and their representatives have re-launched with a new name and identity.

From Friday, the Committee of Vice Chancellors and Principals (CVCP) will be called Universities UK - in a re-branding exercise intended to emphasise a more "outward looking and progressive" direction.

New logo for Universities UK
The new logo is an abstract image of a map of the British Isles
Universities UK will take on the CVCP's role of representing the heads of universities and higher education colleges.

The change of identity reflected the CVCP's "image problem", said Professor Sir Howard Newby, the president who will oversee the re-naming.

He said the re-launch would help create an image of an organisation ready to look outwards to other interest groups in higher education, including students and parents.

Student fees

The new-look organisation will seek to escape the dusty image of university management and wants to raise the profile of the higher education sector.

Chief executive Diana Warwick said the university sector had changed dramatically over the past decade and "we wanted a new identity which would reflect that change".
Professor Sir Howard Newby
Professor Sir Howard Newby wants a new image for university chiefs
Universities UK has set out an agenda for next year which it says will keep it "centre-stage" of the big debates on higher education.

Accompanying the new identity, Universities UK has published a report on options for funding higher education and the setting of fees for students.

A follow-up meeting in March will determine the universities' chiefs funding preferences, when a looming general election is likely to raise the political profile of student fees.

A major research project into the impact of student debt will begin in the new year, with the first findings to be reported in March.

There will also be consideration of how universities and the National Health Service can work together in developing healthcare.

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See also:

14 Sep 00 | Education
Universities debate funding options
24 May 00 | Education
University research 'underfunded'
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