College Appoints New Principal

Following an intensive recruitment and interview process East Durham College are pleased to announce the appointment of their new Principal.

Stuart Wesselby is the successful candidate and his full time contract will commence from 5th April 2010. Stuart is currently Deputy Principal at Tresham College in Northamptonshire and will start at East Durham College once he has completed his notice period.

Incumbent Ian Prescott is under contract until September 2010 and will provide advice and support during the handover period. On the appointment, Mr Prescott said: “Stuart was by far the best person who came for interview. I know Stuart will continue the hard work to make us the best college in the North East. I will help him and the College to ensure East Durham College achieve this.”

Mr Wesselby, who originates from Grantham in Lincolnshire, graduated from London University and then had a period of time in the business world where he was both a Sales and Marketing Director. After returning from Australia where he lived for three years he decided on a career change into education.

While doing his masters degree in Sports Science he started part time lecturing at a college in the North West. Jobs then followed in; Lecturing, as Head of Sport & Leisure at Grantham College, as a Vice Principal at Huntingdon College and then latterly as Deputy Principal at Tresham College, where he has recently helped steer the college through a very successful Ofsted inspection

Mr Wesselby commented: “I am very excited about joining a fantastic college such as East Durham. The College has seen rapid improvements under the current Principal and I intend to carry this journey forward.  I believe this college has great potential, and my ambition is to make the educational experience for all learners at East Durham College second to none.

“East Durham College has a great tradition in the North East for its sports provision and I intend to build on that. Let’s not however, forget the other areas of the College that also deliver real excellence in learning such as our land based provision at Houghall."

Mr Wesselby went on to say: “Although there may be difficulties ahead in terms of economic climate, I intend to steer the College in a planned coherent manner to ensure that it can continue to serve the local community and local business, and become an outstanding provider of vocational education and skills, ensuring the people of County Durham have the skills and qualifications they require to prosper and realise their ambitions.”

Ian Williams, Chair of the Board of Governors, added: “Myself and the Board of Governors are delighted with the appointment of Stuart. The appointment has been a very protracted and thorough process and we believe we have made an appointment that will further develop the outstanding position that the College has achieved under the stewardship of Ian Prescott.

“With the recent opening of the new college campus offering world class education facilities, the College is now well on target to deliver excellence in learning to the community and businesses of East Durham and beyond.”