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Hello & welcome

Welcome to Observe, the annual magazine for alumni, supporters and friends of Oxford Brookes University.

The last year has presented a world of challenges and opportunities for the higher education sector, which continues to evolve at a rapid and often bewildering pace. Most of the recent changes are a result of the 2017 Higher Education and Research Act which established the Office for Students (OfS) to regulate higher education in England. OfS has been designed to encourage the growth of an increasingly competitive higher education market and it is something that all universities will continue to play close attention to.

We are extremely proud of our international higher education provision including our long-standing partnership with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). We currently have over 28,000 ACCA alumni in 133 countries and you can find out more about the partnership in this issue of Observe.

As we continue to adapt to our ever-changing environment, we want to ensure that Oxford Brookes remains an attractive option for students in the years ahead.

As our greatest ambassadors and advocates, our alumni and supporters play an important role in this. BAFTA and MOBO award-winning hip-hop artist Akala, who received an honorary degree from Oxford Brookes earlier this year, has supported the University over the past few years. In our cover feature, Akala talks about his lifelong love of learning.

Director of Film4 and Oxford Brookes alumnus Daniel Battsek has had an immensely successful career in the film industry over the last 30 years, helping to bring Oscar-winning titles to the screen. I hope you’ll enjoy reading our feature where he discusses his career in the business of film.

Our alumni community remains a constant source of pride and I hope you’ll continue to stay in touch and tell us about your achievements. I hope you enjoy this new issue of Observe.

Best wishes,

Vice-Chancellor, Oxford Brookes University

Photograph by Christopher Cornwell