The University of St Andrews is on the hunt for a new Rector, who will follow in the footsteps of the author of The Jungle Book and a host of famous names including comedian John Cleese.
The position of Rector is unique to the four Scottish ancient universities – St Andrews, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen – and Dundee. Elected every three years by the student body, the Rector acts on behalf of the students and chairs Court, the supreme governing body of the University.
This month, students have been deliberating over who will replace current Rector Kevin Dunion, the first and current Scottish Information Commissioner.
Nominations closed yesterday (19 October) and students will hit the campaign trail from 6pm tomorrow night (21 October). The election period will run until 5PM on Friday 28 October, after which the successful candidate will be announced.
The new Rector will hold the position for three years and, uniquely, will span the University’s 600th anniversary celebrations.
President of the Students’ Association Patrick O’Hare commented, “The position of Rector is incredibly important and relevant as has been highlighted in the recent review into University governance.
“I hope that St Andrews students continue with their traditional high turnout in the Rectorial Election and their tradition of voting in Rectors who will stand up for students. The current Rector Kevin Dunion will be a tough act to follow but I’ve already heard some exciting names being discussed around campus.”
The first Rector of St Andrews was Sir Ralph Anstruther of Balcaskie, who took up post in 1859. He was followed soon after by John Stuart Mill (1865), Field Marshall Sir Douglas Haig (1916), Sir James Matthew Barrie (1919), Rudyard Kipling (1922), Fridtjof Nansen (1925), Jan Christian (‘General’) Smuts (1931).
Decades later, the seventies uniquely saw a host of famous British personalities take on the role, with John Cleese, Alan Coren, Frank Muir and Tim Brooke-Taylor all holding the position of St Andrews rector. In more recent years, Sir Clement Freud was Rector from 2002 to 2006.
Note to Editors
Nominations will be announced tomorrow at 6pm.
Note to Picture Editors
Images of former Rectors are available from the Press Office, contacts below.
Issued by the Press Office, University of St AndrewsStudent experience