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President’s welcome

Welcome to Hughes Hall.  A community of education and research for the 21st century.

As the new academic year starts, I am writing to welcome you to Hughes Hall. And to offer a particularly warm welcome if you are joining us for the first time. You are joining Cambridge’s oldest graduate college and one of the largest colleges, a community of over 200 mature undergraduates and more than 700 postgraduates across every subject area and from over 80 countries.

I joined the college in 2022 after a 32 year career in the United Kingdom’s diplomatic service. I was an undergraduate and a postgraduate at Cambridge in the 1980s.  It is a great honour to return as President of a college whose members are making a real difference to people’s lives and tackling the big challenges of our time, from climate change to education, in the law and in business, in science and the humanities.

We want the work that our people do while they are at Hughes, and after they leave, to create lasting benefits for society.

This is an exciting time to be part of the Hughes Hall community, and I look forward to working alongside you.  Thank you for being part of the college.

Hughes Hall is an ambitious, forward-looking College which also has innovation at its heart. We want to nurture people and ideas that will make a positive difference in the world.  I encourage you to find out more about our cutting-edge research centres, our unique Pathways programme for all students, our leadership initiatives, our fellowship and our inspiring and fun College events. And please get involved!

It is the people of Hughes Hall that make all this possible. We are a mutually supportive and international community of over 900 students, around 150 staff, and more than 250 fellows and senior members. We have a progressive and egalitarian culture, with a rich history of inclusion and intellectual challenge.

The tutorial team, led by Senior Tutor Dr Tori McKee, are here to support you in getting the most out of your time at Hughes.  I recommend that you take a look at what the college can offer.  In particular, an academic skills learning framework, and welfare support for those times when we all need some advice or just a friendly face. Our Bursar, Jonathan Newby, leads the administrative and financial affairs of the College, with a team committed to supporting every aspect of our students’ experience, from application and matriculation through to graduation. Their doors, like my own, are open so please get in touch if you would like advice, support or just to say hello. You can read more about the college’s senior team here. The college staff look after all of us, from catering to housekeeping, administration and security. Please look out for them: they are a vital part of the Hughes community.

This is an exciting time to be part of Hughes Hall , and I look forward to working alongside you.  If you would like to know more about our work, strategic priorities and our vision for 2030 and beyond, this page sets out our purpose.

Thank you for being part of the college. I hope you will be at home at Hughes.

Laurie Bristow
Hughes Hall