Prior to becoming Vice Chancellor at the University of Cumbria, Professor Mennell held the position of Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic) for the University of Sunderland leading on academic and research provision, student experience and outcomes. A Physics and Mathematics graduate, Professor Mennell’s academic field of interest is in forensic and crime scene science, having made significant contributions to forensic science strategy, education and workforce development in the UK and overseas, including her serving on the Home Office Forensic Science Advisory Council and the Skills for Justice Forensic Science Occupational Skills Committee. She was also co-convenor of the Higher Education Academy’s DVC network.

Having held senior positions at Northumbria and Teesside Universities as well as Sunderland, Professor Mennell brings to the University of Cumbria strong leadership skills and sector knowledge, key requisites in addressing the significant opportunities and challenges of a young and geographically-dispersed university in a long-standing HE cold-spot.