The Corporation is the Governing Body of the college, which has been established through the merger of Seevic College and Palmer’s College on 1 August 2017.
Each college was established under the Further and Higher Education Act 1992. Following the merger, the Corporation changed its name in November 2018 to Unified Seevic Palmer’s College, using the trading name of USP College. The Corporation exists to provide Further and Higher Education and is also allowed to supply goods and services in connection with its provision of education.
The USP College Governance
The Corporation’s function is to decide on strategic policy and the overall direction of the college, as well as monitoring the performance of the most senior managers in the college to ensure the quality and effectiveness of provision that is offered to students within the area.
The Corporation’s Instrument and Articles of Government provide the legal basis on which it operates, specifying the composition of the Corporation, the way in which it must conduct its business, its duties and responsibilities and its role as an employer, with regard to students and with regard to the discharge of its financial responsibilities.
The Corporation must be properly constituted and each member of the Corporation owes a fiduciary duty to the college, that is, they must show the highest loyalty to the college and act in good faith in its interests. Effectively each member must try to act honestly, diligently and independently whilst, at the same time, paying due attention to the requirement to take collective responsibility as part of a corporate body. The Corporation regularly reviews and updates all of its policies and procedures which provide the framework for its operations, to ensure that they are up to date and comply with the best practice in the sector and particularly the key principles for public office, namely:
These values are enshrined in the Code of Conduct outlining the standards set by the Corporation for governorship and the way in which it conducts its business. This includes an open Register of Interests for Members which is available for public scrutiny. The key documents which relate to the governance of the college are:
- Instrument and Articles of Government
- Code of Good Governance for English Colleges
- Code of Conduct for Corporation Members
- Manual of Governance
- Committee Structure
- The College's Senior Post Holder Remuneration Code
- The College's Senior Post Holder Remuneration Code: Annual Statement to the Governing Body
The Corporation will normally meet at least once a term. It operates through a number of committees which deal with the detailed work of the Corporation. Each committee also meets at least once a term:
- Risk and Audit Committee
- Finance and Resources Committee
- Quality Committee
- Search and Governance Committee
- Remuneration Committee (meets annually).
All of the committees operate to approved terms of reference:
- Risk and Audit Committee Terms of Reference
- Finance and Resources Committee Terms of Reference
- Quality Committee Terms of Reference
- Search and Governance Committee Terms of Reference
- Remuneration Committee Terms of Reference.
Appointment to the Corporation
The Search and Governance Committee is responsible for all membership issues and no independent member can be appointed to the Corporation without recommendation by the Committee.
Membership of the Corporation is broadly defined within the Instrument and Articles of Government and, within these parameters, currently comprises of 15 members, which includes the Principal, two staff and two student members.