Our newly elected Senior Governor, Esther Roberton tells us about her important new role at the University. 

Tell us about your role at the University.

I’m responsible for the leadership of Court, where we set the direction of the University and ensure that the Principal and his team deliver to the best of their ability. It’s also my role to ensure that we are well connected with and take the views of all our key stakeholders into account. Internally that means students, staff and alumni. Externally that will include among others the Funding Council, Scottish Government as well as colleges and other universities. I see a big part of my role as being an ambassador for the University wherever possible.

How do you usually start your day?

With a large mug of Lady Grey tea, some yoghurt and fruit and the online news headlines. Then on the train I tackle the crossword and Sudoku against the clock to get my brain in gear.

What brought you to the University of Aberdeen?

I saw it as a wonderful opportunity to contribute to the future of a great institution, winner of Scottish University of the Year 2019, but, far from resting on its laurels, still with great ambitions.

What’s your favourite thing about your job?

It’s only week two so a bit early to be sure but so far it’s definitely the warm welcome I’ve had from the people I’ve met so far. That includes everyone from the receptionists at the University Office, the Rector, the Pro Chancellor, the Principal and his senior team, staff, students, Court members and Trades Union reps.

What are your work priorities at the moment?

To meet more of the staff and students as well as the Court members, to get a feeling for the priorities and to get to know the city and region better. All of this will help me contribute to the work already started to develop an ambitious new strategy for the next twenty years.

How do you like to relax outside work?

I love to spend time with friends and family, particularly our two grown up sons. I recently took up pilates, I’m an avid reader and love to go walking. I’m currently trying to get back to playing my piano and have taken up gardening as a total beginner - we recently moved house and want to introduce more plants to attract birds and wildlife.