Home / Roles / Chief Executive | Highlands and Islands Students’ Association

Chief Executive | Highlands and Islands Students’ Association

Do you have exceptional communication skills, high levels of emotional intelligence and an ability to influence and build consensus with a wide variety of people and personalities? We are looking for an inclusive leader who can lead by example through positive values and behaviours.

  • Location: Willingness to travel to Inverness and other UHI locations regularly (in line with government guidance)
  • Salary: £45,000 - £50,000

About the role

HISA is a very different Students’ Association. This is because the University of the Highlands and Islands is a very different type of University. There are two distinct factors that make UHI unique. We have 13 academic partners and the 70+ study centres that constitute UHI, meaning that we have students spanning a 550+ mile geographic range. The other is that you can walk into UHI with no qualification, progress through every level of academia and leave with a PhD.

UHI is complex but is proud to have this unique delivery model. We want to support all students, everywhere and anywhere that they are.

In recent years, we have done that by being highly innovative. Securing significant investment and by growing our team from three to 30 staff which enables them to work closely with and support our 21 different elected officers.

Having had five years of successive growth, we now need to invest time, energy and resource into further building the internal infrastructure to ensure that we have a more sustainable and efficient organisation in the future.

We are still keen to innovate and grow. We will need further income to realise our full potential and deliver on everything we would like to for students. Whilst we have a healthy financial position, diversification of income will be important to support our future plans and sustain our growth.

Who we are looking for

Given the range and volume of stakeholders at UHI, it is essential that our Chief Executive has exceptional communication skills, high levels of emotional intelligence and an ability to influence and build consensus with a wide variety of people and personalities.

Our people are our biggest asset, and we are proud that we have developed a positive, welcoming and embracing working culture. It is essential that you are an inclusive leader who can lead by example through positive values and behaviours.

We are also proud that we have an inclusive team of staff and officers. We will always welcome candidates from different backgrounds, especially those from underrepresented communities who want to come and work with us.

If you think you can help us build the most innovative Students’ Association in the UK, we encourage you to contact our advising consultant at Peridot Partners.

Schedule a conversation with Bill Yuksel here: https://calendly.com/byuksel/

Closing date: 9am, Wednesday 13th January 2021

If you would like to know more about this role please contact Bill Yuksel

View profile

Welcome from Florence Jansen, HISA President

As President of the Highlands and Islands Students’ Association, I am incredibly excited that you are interested in becoming our new Chief Executive Officer. This is my first year as HISA President and my third year with Team HISA. I am so proud to be part of this diverse, student-led charity.

At HISA, we believe that students can and want to shape the communities that they are part of for the better. Through our student leaders and elected representatives, we create opportunities for students to come together and inspire them to make changes and shape the world around them.

The University of the Highlands and Islands is a very different type of institution that delivers education across Scotland through 13 colleges and research institutions. Due to this unique structure, HISA is a very different Students’ Association compared to its counterparts in other universities and colleges. We are the only Students’ Association in Scotland to provide our members with both local and regional representation, and our team of Student Officers is elected by our students to represent their views from the classroom right up to the University Court.

HISA is a fantastic place to work at. We are value-driven, team-orientated, and offer a fun and fast-paced work environment. Our overall ambition is to be the most innovative Student’s Association in the UK, striving to be at the heart of the experience of all students at the University of the Highlands and Islands.

We hope that you will come join our team and help us implement the changes that our students want to see.

Florence Jansen
President 2020 – 2021
Highlands and Islands Students’ Association

About us

The Highlands and Islands Students’ Association (HISA) represents all higher and further education students across the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) and its 13 partners.

HISA is run by students, for students. We exist to make sure student experience is the best it can be!

Representing you regionally

Due to our unique geography, we are the only Students’ Association in Scotland to provide our members with both local and regional representation. This means students can influence decisions where they study and also influence decisions that affect peers at other academic partners.

The HISA regional team is made up of a President, a Vice President (Further Education) and a Vice President (Higher Education). The team works full-time (on sabbatical), in partnership with the elected officers from each academic partner, to ensure a strong student voice can help to shape courses, facilities and overall student experience.

To best support the needs of both higher and further education students, we also have two regional committees: The Higher Education Regional Committee and the Further Education Regional Committee. Both committees make recommendations to the HISA Executive Committee and to UHI’s academic partners to consider and act on.

Representing you locally

At each of our 13 academic partners, you will have a Local Officer to represent students.

The role of the Local Officer is to make sure student views and ideas influence decisions where students study. The Local Officer works alongside Class or Course Reps, to make sure opinions and concerns are heard, and that students are informed about any changes taking place.

Local Officers have many duties including:

  • Sitting on the board of management and other committees
  • Sitting on HISA’s Executive Committee and Regional Council
  • Meeting with Class Reps
  • Helping to deliver local events and activities

    To access a full job description and application details,
    please fill out the form below.


    If you would like an informal conversation about the role you can schedule a calendar slot with Bill here:


    To apply, please submit a CV and a supporting statement (a maximum of two sides of A4). The supporting statement should clearly outline your suitability against the essential criteria in the person specification with an explanation why the role is of interest and relevant to you.

    Please ensure that your application is emailed to response@peridotpartners.co.uk inserting “HISA – Chief Executive” into the subject field.

    We will send an acknowledgement email within three working days from receipt. If you have not received a response, please contact:


    HISA is an equal opportunities employer and is committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees. We celebrate diversity and applications are actively encouraged from individuals from diverse backgrounds.

    We wish to encourage applications regardless of race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origins, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, marital or civil partner status, pregnancy or maternity, age or religion or belief. All applications will be considered solely on merit.

    Disabled applicants are invited to contact us in confidence at any point during the recruitment process, to discuss steps that can be taken to overcome any operational difficulties.


    Closing date: 9am, Wednesday 13th January 2021
    Shortlisting: Wednesday 20th January 2021
    Preliminary interviews: Thursday 4th & Friday 5th February 2021
    Final interviews: Friday 12th February 2021

    Equal Opportunities Monitoring

    Peridot and HISA are committed to promoting equality and diversity. To help us raise awareness and support a culture that is diverse and recognises and develops the potential of all, we need to appreciate the profile of candidates who apply for positions. We would therefore be most grateful if you would complete this equality monitoring form.

    The information will be treated confidentially and anonymously and will help us to support our commitment to fair recruitment practice. All information provided will be held in the strictest confidence and will not be shared with anyone, in line with the new Data Protection Act 2018 launched on 25 May 2018. The information provided does not form part of the decision-making process and will not affect your application.

    We treat all job applicants equally and fairly and do not unlawfully discriminate against them. We do this by ensuring that we operate an open and fair recruitment process, and making decisions using selection criteria which do not discriminate. We will take every possible step to ensure that employees and volunteers are treated fairly, with the aim of creating a culture that respects and values each others’ differences, that is free of discrimination and promotes dignity, equality and diversity.

    Data Processing, Protection and Privacy Policy

    By completing the form to view, or if you have access to this page from an email invitation, Peridot Partners will have processed your personal information. For more information about Peridot Partners’ data processing activities and your rights, please read our Privacy Policy.

    You might also be interested in: