Jane Hubble, Head of Technical Services in the School of Water, Energy and the Environment (SWEE), Cranfield University, has been shortlisted as a finalist for Outstanding Technician of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards 2020.

Jane led a £3 million project to transform Cranfield’s environmental laboratory facilities into a new large shared environmental analytical facility, used by 250 MSc, PhD and postdoctoral students each year.

The new facility includes the National Research Facility for Water and Wastewater Treatment, opened in 2019, and developed laboratories for researching point-of-use water treatment devices – particularly important for improving access to clean water for remote communities.

Jane has spent her whole career in the technical community within industry and higher education and was promoted to her current role earlier this year – the first female technician to reach this senior post within the University.

Professor Simon Pollard, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, School of Water, Energy and Environment, Cranfield University, said: “We’re delighted to hear that Jane has been shortlisted for Outstanding Technician of the Year. Throughout her 22 years at Cranfield she has demonstrated drive and commitment to her role and the wider University – this recognition of her contribution to technical work in higher education is richly deserved.

“Jane is an outstanding example of a senior technician leading a core UK research facility to the highest of professional standards and has been a trailblazer for the creation of shared culture in laboratory facilities at Cranfield, while at the same time developing technicians and supporting them in their careers.”

Jane is the Cranfield lead for the Technician Commitment (TC) and has led the Cranfield TC Working Group since 2017. She is a member of the Midland Innovation (MI) Technical Managers Committee, taking a leading role in the implementation of TALENT (the largest ever investment into technicians in higher education, led by the MI universities) at Cranfield.

Jane was also shortlisted for the prestigious nationwide Papin Prize, organised by the Higher Education Technician Summit and Midlands Innovation in the Core Research Facility and Lifetime Achievement categories in 2019.

Winners of the 16th annual THE Awards – widely known as the 'Oscars of higher education' – will be announced in a virtual ceremony on 26 November.