Our Membership

MEG has a high profile and is recognised as an authoritative voice in an increasingly diverse higher education sector in England. We take a measured and evidence-based approach to policy issues often based on members’ contributions to discussions and research papers, especially in the field of college based higher education which is our primary focus. The group serves as a network for senior practitioners and managers , enabling them to share good practice & discuss policy and strategy informally between regular termly meetings. MEG carries out research on a regular basis and is regarded as a source of informed opinion by a range of Government, academic and employer organisations. Institutions are members of MEG: actual representation at MEG meetings is the decision of college Principals.

Membership Criteria

MEG is a single-issue organisation, being focussed entirely on College Based Higher Education matters. The force of its arguments stems from the volume of HE delivered by its members, so our only criterion for membership is that colleges wishing to join us must have at least 500 Full Time Equivalent HE students. Institutions are members of MEG: actual representation at MEG meetings is the decision of college Principals.

MEG membership runs from 1 August – 31 July. Our membership fee for the 2022-2023 academic year will be £1,800.

MEG members meet formally three times a year during college term times, traditionally face to face but increasingly via electronic media as a result of the pandemic. Additional meetings, masterclasses and working groups take place as required.

Meg Officers

The Chair

The Chair is elected by ballot of member colleges immediately after the summer term meeting. Candidates must be a serving Principal of a member college. The Chair holds office for three years.

The Vice Chairs

The group appoints two Vice Chairs by ballot, at least one of whom must be a serving Principal in a MEG college. The Vice Chairs hold office for two years from 1 August.

The Coordinator

MEG employs a Coordinator to support group meetings and activities and represent the group at a range of external events. The coordinator holds office for 2 years.

Our Current Officers

Chair 2023-26

Dr Sam Parrett OBE, CEO & Group Principal, London South East Education Group.

Sam is Group Principal and CEO of London and South East Education Group, comprising London South East Colleges and London South East Academies Trust. In recognition of her contributions to the educational communities of South East London, Sam was awarded a CBE, and also recognised as the TES Further Education Leader of the Year in 2020. Sam achieved her Doctoral degree in Education Policy in 2019 and currently sits on the Board of the Education and Training Foundation, and is an elected member of the CBI London Council. She is a fellow of the CIPD, RSA and the Chartered Institution of Further Education. Sam is also a designated National Leader of Further Education and undertakes improvement work across the sector, including the mentoring and coaching of new and aspiring principals. Sam.parrett@lsec.ac.uk

Vice Chairs

Jon Ridley Deputy Principal (HE), NGC

First in family to study at university Jon knows first-hand the empowerment of a good education. Jon began work as an FE lecturer in 2002, his first role in college based higher education was in 2008 as a lecturer of Education and Teacher Training at New College Durham. In 2010 Jon was appointed Head of School leading New College Durham’s A-Level, GCSE, ESOL and higher education programmes in Education and Teacher Training. In this role Jon developed a drive and determination to champion access to and then success in higher study for individuals who are under-represented in higher education. Jon joined NCG and Newcastle College Principalship team in August 2016. In 2021 he became Deputy Principal and a member of NCG Executive leading on higher education. Jon is passionate about colleges as place makers working with communities, business, alumni, college staff and students to provide life changing opportunities for individuals that strengthen and shape the places they live and work. Jon leads on NCG’s higher education strategy to 2030 and in June 2023 lead NCG to achieve taught degree awarding powers (TDAP) without time limit a landmark moment for the further education sector. Jon.Ridley@ncl-coll.ac.uk

Colin Booth CEO Luminate Education Group

Colin started work as an FE lecturer in 1984. He is passionate about how local HE courses within FE colleges can transform the lives of individual students and contribute to communities. His first role which included significant responsibility for HE in FE was Vice Principal at Newcastle College. Since then he has served as  principal of two FE colleges (Barnsley and Leeds City) where HE was of strategic importance.  Currently he is CEO for Luminate Education Group which delivers HE at 3 FE colleges (Leeds City, Keighley & Harrogate) and includes a distinct HEI (Leeds Conservatoire).  colin.booth@luminate.ac.uk

MEG Coordinator Nick Whitehouse

Nick started as a lecturer in English and Communications at Burton Technical College in 1986 . A trained journalist, he served on the senior leadership teams of three colleges before setting up his own consultancy specialising in curriculum delivery & strategic improvement,  especially in college based higher education.  His work with MEG focuses on supporting members to navigate the changing HE marketplace.  megcoordinator@gmail.com

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    Contact Us

    If you want to discuss a particular matter please contact the MEG Chair, Dr Sam Parrett OBE.