Rama Thirunamachandran

Downing alumnus recognised in King's Birthday Honours

A Downing alumnus has been awarded an OBE in the King’s Birthday Honours List.

Professor Rama Thirunamachandran (Geography and Natural Sciences 1986) DL, Vice-Chancellor and Principal of Canterbury Christ Church University, has been awarded an OBE for services to Higher Education.

He is recognised for his work over a distinguished career, where he has sought to create transformational and inclusive Higher Education both regionally and nationally.

The first British born Black and Ethnic Minority (BAME) Vice-Chancellor of a mainstream UK university, this honour coincides with Professor Thirunamachandran’s anniversary as ten years as Vice-Chancellor of the University.

Among his many achievements are helping to create the Universities at Medway campus, spearheading the establishment of the brand-new Kent and Medway Medical School, promoting women into engineering, and leading a university that has equipped thousands of students, both young and mature, for fulfilling careers to the benefit of Kent and Medway and the wider region.

Professor Thirunamachandran said: “I am deeply honoured and humbled to receive this award. It is in large part a recognition of the hard work and significant achievements of Canterbury Christ Church University colleagues, students, communities and organisations over the past decade I have had the great privilege to work with.

“An important driver for me has been contributing to the creation of an inclusive and transformative university experience for all, regardless of someone’s background. I am proud to share this honour with all those who have supported me throughout my career. It celebrates the key role of higher education in society and the economy."

Published 23 June 2023