60 seconds with... Linda Taylor

A photo of the Pro Vice-Chancellor International, Linda TaylorAssociate Professor Linda Taylor was recently appointed Pro Vice-Chancellor (International). "My role is to 'internationalise' UWS," says Linda. "The University has a fantastic opportunity to lift its performance and become a significant global player in higher education and research."

Linda explains that internationalising UWS will help to position the University for a sustainable future. "It includes bringing more international students to UWS and giving our students an international experience through significant expansion of the mobility program," she says. "It requires strengthening our global profile through world-class research, teaching and partnerships. This is a whole of University agenda and my role is to bring people together to make UWS a global player."

How long have you worked at UWS and what's the best thing about working here?
At the time of writing, I've been here a month. I'm enjoying the process of getting to know people and what's important to them.

UWS is young and innovative. This gives us a competitive advantage in a sector that is transforming at great speed. Global competition is intensifying and traditional public sector funding is under threat. Technology is disrupting education delivery and the fundamentals of the university business model. Universities that care about their students and have the flexibility to respond to changing needs and prepare them for global careers will be more competitive. Universities that face outwards towards regional and global communities will be more relevant and resilient.

Which campus are you based on?
Werrington North campus.

What is your favourite place on one of the UWS campuses and why?
I love the view from my Werrington window and the kangaroos that come to visit.

When you're not at work, what will we find you doing?
When I'm not at work I spend time with my kids and friends.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
As a child I was convinced I was going to be an Olympic gymnast.

What was your first job?
My first job was working at a women's refuge. I learnt so much from talented, committed colleagues about dealing with the system, negotiating funding, advocating on big issues while accepting that there's a lot you can't fix and celebrating small wins.

What has been your greatest success?
I wouldn't point to one achievement, but the process of balancing family and work and finding myself now in a role where I can make a difference.

If you could go to just one country in the world for a vacation, which country would it be and why?
Tibet – it combines beauty, culture, history and hardship

What is your favourite album?
Aretha Franklin's Greatest Hits – love that voice and energy.

If you could invite anyone to dinner who would it be and why?
The Obamas – Barack and Michelle. They are powerful, principled, engaging and smart. Obama hasn't delivered on the generational change hoped for; it's been compromise the whole way. What price have they paid for power and have their principles survived? Has power made them arrogant? (I hope not, or I'll leave after the entrée.)