The university’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Debra Humphris, leads a large and complex organisation with 2,600 staff and some 19,000 students across four campuses that generates £700 million for the regional economy.
Professor Humphris’ annual salary is £246,480, although since May 2020 she has taken a voluntary pay cut against this, initially a 10% reduction and currently 5%. Her pay is well below the sector average for institutional heads and her remuneration package does not include a range of benefits available to senior staff at other universities (eg free accommodation). She does not take the pension contribution and personal car allowance to which she is entitled.
Since arriving at the university, Professor Humphris has taken the same, or a lower, annual salary increase when compared to the general pay increase awarded to all other staff at the university, and has waived her contractual right to a performance bonus, instead using this money to support staff and student-related activities across the university.
When combined with a carryover from last year, the Vice-Chancellor’s personal philanthropic giving to the university last year totalled £10,250 (and since taking up tenure as Vice-Chancellor totals over £87,000). This included:
- £700 in support of students experiencing financial hardship and a further £2,500 in support of the university’s COVID-19 Student Fund
- £2,500 to support the university's Momentum mentoring scheme
- £2,050 to support student-led projects through the Springboard Crowdfunding platform
- £2,000 to establish a recognition fund for the work of our Technicians during the COVID pandemic
- £500 in support of an annual student prize.
The university’s Remuneration Committee, made up of members of the Board of Governors, sets the Vice-Chancellor’s salary in line with the ACEVO Good Pay Guide, ensuring that remuneration levels are linked to a regular and objective system of performance appraisal and benchmarked against comparable roles.