EPC people


President: Professor Colin Turner:

Professor Turner is Head of the School of Engineering at Ulster University, having taken up that role in 2010, and Professor of Engineering Education since 2013. He obtained his Joint Honours degree in Pure and Applied Mathematics and his PhD in Mathematics from Queen’s University Belfast in 1993 and 1997. He joined Ulster University in 1998 to take up a post as lecturer in Mathematics, Computing and Statistics and undertaking Cardio Vascular research with the Royal Victoria Hospital and NIBEC (Nanotechnology and Integrated Bioengineering Centre).

His areas of teaching expertise are in Mathematics and Software Development for Engineering. He also has interests in the developments of technology to assist Learning and Teaching. He has a particular interest in technologies that impact upon Employability and Curriculum Development both within the University environment and outside. He has developed and released several of these systems with Free Software licenses and they have been used by Higher Education Providers in the UK and Beyond.

Professor Turner is a Fellow of the Institution of Mathematics and its Applications (FIMA), a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (FIET), a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PFHEA) and has served as a board member for the EPC since April 2013.

He is a member of the advisory group of Learned Societies and Professional Bodies for the All Party Group for Science and Technology at the Northern Ireland Assembly and an Executive Committee member and Trustee for ASET, the UK body for placement professionals.

Follow Colin on Twitter at @ProfCTurner or on LinkedIn.

Vice President

Vice-President (Past President): Professor Sarah Spurgeon OBE FREng: Sarah SpurgeonSarah Spurgeon is currently Professor of Control Engineering and Head of the Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering at University College London. She is President of the Institute of Measurement and Control for the years 2015-16 where she is Chair of the Accreditation Committee.

Having served as an elected member of the Engineering Professors’ Council Executive Committee, Sarah is currently Chair of its Research, Innovation and Knowledge Transfer sub Committee.

A Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, she is also a member of the EPSRC’s Engineering Strategic Advisory Team (SAT) and a Board Member of EngineeringUK.  For REF 2014, she was a member of the Sub Panel 15 for General Engineering.

Sarah’s research interests are in the area of systems modelling and analysis, robust control and estimation in which areas she has published over 270 refereed research papers. She was awarded the Honeywell International Medal for ‘distinguished contribution as a control and measurement technologist to developing the theory of control’ in 2010 and an IEEE Millennium Medal in 2000. She is currently a member of the Council of the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) and a member of the General Assembly of the European Control Association. Within the UK she is an independent member of the Defence Scientific Advisory Council (DSAC) which provides independent advice to the Secretary of State for Defence on science, technology, engineering, analysis and mathematics matters.

Hon Treasurer

Honorary Treasurer: Professor Stephanie Haywood:

Hon Secretary

Honorary Secretary: Professor David Harrison:  Professor Harrison began his career as an Apprentice Engineer with Fodens Limited, the Sandbach based manufacturer of commercial vehicles. He went on to complete a BSc (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering which included a 15 month secondment with Ernest Scragg & Sons Ltd, manufacturers of Textile Machinery where he led a large factory layout rationalisation scheme. Upon graduation he completed an MSc in Manufacturing Technology during which time he delivered a novel instrument for aiding machine tool investment decisions. He then joined the Microwave Division of Ferranti Ltd as the Production Engineering Manager and was involved with the packaging of electronic communication devices for military air, sea and land applications. He next received an invitation to undertake a fully funded industry based PhD with SIMON-Vicars Ltd which was concerned with the implementation and optimisation of CADCAM within the company. David gained his PhD from the University of Manchester and also joined the Staff at UMIST from where he transferred to Staffordshire University. In 1994 he was promoted to Professor when he joined the Staff of the Department of Engineering at Glasgow Caledonian University where he has held a number of roles. He is currently Head of Research & Knowledge Transfer within the School of Engineering and Computing.

Chief Executive

Johnny RichChief Executive: Johnny Rich:  As well as his role with the EPC, Johnny Rich is well known across the higher education sector as a high-profile commentator on policy issues as well as the chief executive of student advice and outreach organisation Push, as a consultant working in education and careers, and as an author.

Before joining the EPC, Johnny has already worked on many issues of concern to our members. Over the past 25 years, he led Push’s research – such as on drop-out rates and student debt – which has had direct impacts on policy.

Johnny’s thought leadership, such as his papers for a graduate levy and a national access fund (2018) and on employability (2015) for the Higher Education Policy Institute, have been influential throughout the sector. Policy issues are also a significant part of his consultancy work, along with communications. His clients have included the European Commission, HEFCE, U-Multirank, as well as many universities, recruiters and charities.

He’s a regular speaker at conferences, awards and in schools. In 2013, his novel A Human Script was published.

Follow Johnny on Twitter at @JohnnySRich or on LinkedIn.