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Zoe Lewis

Zoe Lewis CBE

Principal & Chief Executive

Zoe, formerly Deputy Principal, took over the role as Principal/Chief Executive of Middlesbrough College on 26th September 2013.

Zoe is Middlesbrough College’s first female Principal/Chief Executive and is driving forward the College’s commitment to enhance the region’s economic competitiveness through directly aligning the College’s offer to the skills required by employers.

That vision includes ensuring Middlesbrough College – with a turnover of £43m – delivers first class education and training to over 15,000 students of many different starting points, and ensures all our courses reflect the needs and requirements of employers across the region.

To help realise this vision, the College has invested £20m into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) including a new Engineering and Technical Training Centre which opened in 2015, and working with employers it has also developed a broad portfolio of apprenticeships with apprentice numbers having increased from around 100 to over 2000 over a five year period.

Zoe said: “It’s a really exciting time for Middlesbrough College and I couldn’t work with a more dedicated, committed and talented team. “I’m looking forward to leading the College to the next level, through delivering these ambitious investment plans, listening carefully to employers and community needs and ultimately ensuring our students receive a high class and fully rounded educational and training experience, to position them ahead in this competitive jobs market. “

Zoe is no stranger to expansion and achievement – she led the £70m capital project that saw the College built at Middlehaven back in 2008. She was also voted the most inspirational female leader in the country working in further education, by the Women’s Leadership Network in 2012. The mum-of-two has been a member of the Senior Leadership Team at Middlesbrough College since 2005, and lives in Stokesley with her husband Craig and two daughters.

In 2024, Zoe was awarded a CBE in the King’s New Year’s Honours List for services to education after ten years as head of Middlesbrough College Group.

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