An audience of more than 400 gathered last week in the Bloomsbury Theatre to listen to a lecture and Q&A with the man now steering the big ship UCL, new President & Provost, Professor Michael Arthur.
The event was the first of the new season of Lunch Hour Lectures, as well as a first opportunity for many members of the UCL community – a collectively curious bunch – to begin to form an opinion about the man in charge.
One month into the job, Professor Arthur declared that he is “having a great time”, but it is clear that he has already begun to form a view of the university’s current strengths and weaknesses, as well as a tentative but compelling vision for its future.
It is early days, of course, and UCL is a large and complex organisation. However, this lecture made Professor Arthur’s feelings on a number of key issues clear and gave a good sense of the institutional direction of travel he anticipates – one with the student experience at its heart.