Chris Tunningley has been appointed as Leeds College of Building Assistant Principal for Adult Learning and Higher Education.
Chris, formerly the Head of University Centre for Architecture, Engineering & Construction at Leeds College of Building, succeeds retiring Assistant Principal Brian Duffy.
Speaking of his appointment, Chris said: “I am thrilled to start in this post at Leeds College of Building. I’m passionate about how education can raise prospects and know that gaining a sought-after trade or profession while attaining maths, English, and digital skills can be life changing. Studying part-time or following a vocational higher-education pathway like a degree apprenticeship is a hands-on and economical route that ultimately leads to the same successful career destination as traditional academic routes.”
Leeds College of Building Principal & CEO Nikki Davis, said: “Huge congratulations to Chris after a competitive selection process against a high calibre of candidate. Chris succeeds outgoing Assistant Principal Brian Duffy, who worked at the College for many years before retiring in December. Brian was critical in the growth of our higher education provision, and I know that Chris will be instrumental in building on this success. May I join others in wishing Chris well as he moves into this role.”
Chris has over 33 years of experience in the Building Services Engineering industry and Further and Higher Education sectors, initially qualifying as a gas engineer. After 19 years in engineering, Chris transitioned to teaching in 2008 when he became a lecturer in Building Services Engineering & Construction at Leeds College of Building.
Following this, Chris was appointed Curriculum Manager for Building Services & Civil Engineering and then Assistant Faculty Director for HE, Construction Design & Management at the College.
Chris will oversee adult learning and funding to combat regional skills shortages, plan for future skills needs (such as sustainable construction), and widening participation in education. Chris will also lead on higher education strategy, which incorporates the new Leeds College of Building University Centre, and work closely with employer partners and other professional bodies.
Chris continued: “I came from a working-class background when university wasn’t an option, so I started my career as an Apprentice with British Gas. I progressed to a qualified gas engineer, technical engineer, quality assurance engineer, and then technical support manager. I am also a professionally registered Incorporated Engineer (IEng) with the Engineering Council through membership of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). I always took any opportunity to better myself and gain extra qualifications through work.”
“I have first-hand experience of learning on the job as an adult and understand the challenges of studying part-time while balancing life and family commitments. Through the Open University, I progressed to a BSc in Engineering, Science & Design before gaining a master’s degree in Building Services Engineering – all while working. I hope these experiences will help me in my new role, having walked in our students’ shoes and lived it myself.”