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AoC College Higher Education Conference 2024


Holiday Inn London, Bloomsbury

Date: 21 March 2024

Time: 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM

Fee: Starting from £325 + VAT per delegate

The annual AoC College Higher Education conference will be taking place on Thursday 21 March in London and is the must attend event for college HE leaders, practitioners and those with an interest in college HE. The conference sessions will cover updates on policy, regulation and best practice sessions led by colleges. There will also be plenty of time dedicated to networking so you can share advice with peers and explore potential solutions to some of the common challenges you face.

Download your programme here

Why attend?

  • Gain an update on the Lifelong Loan Entitlement policy and implementation from the Department for Education and the Student Loans Company and ask your questions directly
  • Hear from Susan Lapworth, Chief Executive, Office for Students who will share OfS’ approach to regulation and priorities for the future
  • Discuss the role of colleges in tertiary education with Professor Alison Wolf
  • Attend practical breakout sessions and gain advice from colleagues on access and participation plans, higher technical qualifications and how to make scholarship real in the college HE context
  • Network with fellow practitioners from across the country, sharing ideas and experiences.

Join the conversation and stay up-to-date with the latest news: @AoC_Info

Delegate Fees

AoC Member fee - per delegate - £325 + VAT

Affiliate Member - per delegate - £350 + VAT

Non member institutions - per delegate - £375 + VAT

Non member commercial - per delegate - £750 + VAT

Stand support - per delegate - £100 + VAT

2 delegates or more from the same institution (AoC Members) = 10% discount


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Alison Charles
Customer Success Manager, UCAS

As Customer Success Manager, Alison is responsible for operational frontline support for UCAS customers and manages the Customer Success Team and as part of her role, is responsible for the relationship with College HE provider customers.

Alison joined UCAS in 2015, having previously been Undergraduate Admissions Manager at the University of Manchester, and in admissions roles in the education sector since 1994.

Dr Jo Kear
Director of Higher Education, South Gloucestershire and Stroud College
Dr Jo Kear photo

Jo Kear is Director of Higher Education at SGS College. She has worked in education (FE and HE) for nearly 30 years, occupying a variety of academic and curriculum lead roles both at SGS and at other institutions. Jo is deeply committed to College-based Higher Education and believes whole-heartedly in the exceptional, person-centred approach that colleges offer their degree students.

Dr Jo Kear photo
Jon Ridley
Deputy Principal, Newcastle College
Jon Ridley photo

First in his family to study at university, Jon knows first-hand the empowerment of a good education. He is passionate about colleges as place makers, working with communities, business, alumni, college staff and students to provide life changing opportunities for individuals that strengthen and shape the places they live and work.

Jon leads on NCG’s Higher Education Strategy to 2030. In 2022 Jon led the achievement of a key strategic milestone when NCG achieved taught degree awarding powers on an indefinite basis. This means NCG is in the special position combining the strength of a further education college with the power to confer degree awards.

Jon Ridley photo
Lucinda Sanders
Director Higher Education and Adult Learning, Exeter College

Lucinda has over 12 years' experience of working in Further Education, with a particular focus on Adult Learning, Higher Education and Apprenticeship provision. Lucinda is currently Director of Higher Education and Adult Learning at Exeter College and for the last 3 years has been strategic lead on evolving the higher education offer to focus on local skills trends and to increase access to higher level education for adults. This has included successful collaboration with university partners to implement higher technical provision, including a range of HTQs.

Alison Wolf
Professor, King’s College London
Alison Wolf photo

Professor the Baroness Alison Wolf CBE is the Sir Roy Griffiths Professor of Public Sector Management at King’s College London. She sits as a cross-bench peer (Baroness Wolf of Dulwich) in the UK House of Lords. Alison Wolf a was a panel member for the ‘Augar Review’: the independent Review of Post-18 Education and Funding chaired by Sir Philip Augar, which was appointed by the then-Prime Minister (Theresa May), and reported in 2019. She was seconded to central government as adviser on skills and workforce to the UK Prime Minister from spring 2020 to spring 2023. In 2019 she delivered the annual King's lectures, on 'Universities. the economy and the state'.

Alison Wolf photo
Rob Bosworth
Deputy CEO, Exeter College
Rob Bosworth photo

Rob is Deputy CEO at Exeter College where he has been working for 24 years. He is an Honorary Member of the City & Guilds London Institute, a Vice Chair at Exeter Chamber of Commerce and Director at InExeter. Rob was previously the Chair of the Ted Wragg Multi Academy Trust which runs schools in Exeter and Plymouth.

Rob holds an Advanced Certificate in Education (MA), BA Hons. in Education and PGCE Secondary Education. Rob has vast experience in establishing innovative partnerships and collaborations. He has built a wide-ranging portfolio of additional expertise in governance, strategic planning and establishing new Boards in Exeter and the heart of Devon.

Rob Bosworth photo
Sadie Skellon
Vice Principal Higher Education, University Centre Weston
Sadie Skellon photo

Sadie is Vice Principal Higher Education responsible for HE Provision at University Centre Weston (UCW) which has a range of provision including full honours degrees, HTQ’s and apprenticeships at level 4 and above. Sadie has worked within education sector throughout her career and has extensive experience within HE and FE.

Sadie joined Weston College in 2002 and quickly specialised in the higher education provision and widening participation activity. She has expertise in student support, wellbeing and safeguarding, enhancing the student experience and student engagement. She now oversees HE curriculum development, quality and regulatory compliance.

Sadie Skellon photo
Selene Washington
Senior Engagement and Planning Manager, IfATE
Selene Washington photo

Coming from a background in teaching, Selene joined IfATE at the early implementation stage of the HTQ approval process in 2020. Selene is responsible for planning, engagement, and refinement of the approvals process.

Selene Washington photo

I've been attending this conference for many years; both in person and online. I have found them not only to be incredibly useful but also supportive in nature. It's not just about reiterating new policies, regulations, DfE changes etc to an audience but exploring with like-minded colleagues how we can potentially navigate these challenges in the complex education space that is HE in FE.

Rebecca Philbrook, Abingdon and Witney College

Great conference, again! Really strong set of speakers, a range of topical matters covered, including LLE and HTQ developments thought provoking breakout sessions with plenty of time to catch up with colleagues and network.

Andrew Jones, Linking London