University welcomes Cabinet Secretary for Education

8 September 2016

Kirsty Williams

The Cabinet Secretary for Education Kirsty Williams AM visited Cardiff University today to deliver her first major speech on higher education since being appointed to the Welsh Government.

Speaking at the University’s Business School, the Education Secretary said that now is the time for Welsh universities to reconnect with the communities that surround them.

Recognising the similar task for politicians and government, she called on universities to recapture their civic mission by doing more to reach out to people across Wales following the fallout from the vote for Brexit.

The Education Secretary also highlighted how there is now an opportunity to become more open to the world.

Speaking after the event, Cardiff University Vice-Chancellor and Chair of Universities Wales, Professor Colin Riordan said: “'Being part of and contributing to community has always been at the heart of what we do as universities. After the Brexit vote, as we reconsider our place within Europe and globally, we have the opportunity to reflect on how we might positively influence community at a variety of levels: locally, regionally, nationally and beyond.

“Universities can play a significant part in the development of better social cohesion, bringing people together and brokering community relationships based on shared values, regardless of age, gender, race or religion."

Professor Colin Riordan,, Cardiff University Vice-Chancellor and Chair of Universities Wales

“We are proud of our successes, but we can do more to embrace and appreciate the cultural and social diversity of the communities within which we sit. We are united with government in working beyond the constraints of our own physical and virtual boundaries to support and develop meaningful and sustainable social cohesion.”