Our President

President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies CBE is an internationally respected academic and university leader.

She heads one of the UK’s most dynamic higher education institutions, which as a University for the Common Good, is committed to providing an unrivalled university education and student experience, underpinned by a determination to champion social change at home and across the world.

Among other initiatives, this has led to the founding of the Grameen Caledonian College of Nursing in Bangladesh to improve health care education; the Caledonian Club in Glasgow and London to raise educational aspirations; and support for the UK’s first Grameen micro-finance lending system, all of which demonstrate GCU’s commitment to its ‘common good’ mission. Professor Gillies was recently appointed to the African Leadership University Advisory Council alongside respected figures from institutions such as Harvard and Brown, which is developing a vision for a new type of University for Africa.

Professor Gillies was elected a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal College of Physicians of London in 2002; a Fellow of the Academy for Social Sciences in 2005; a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2015 and became an Honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Glasgow in 2007. Previously a Pro-Vice Chancellor at the University of Nottingham, Pamela has worked in Geneva as a member of the World Health Organisation’s Global Programme on AIDS (1989-90); at Harvard University as a Visiting Professor in Health and Human Rights (1992-3); as a Harkness Fellow of the Commonwealth Fund of New York; and in London on a seconded post as the first Executive Director of Research at the Health Education Authority for England (1996-99). She is a founding patron of a school for children of sex workers in Domjur, Kolkata and has researched and written widely on HIV/AIDS, health development, and inequalities in health focusing on the potential of social action for health.

In 2012, Professor Gillies was awarded the CBE by HM The Queen for her services to education and public health.