Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs

Jane Chafer

Jane has had a marketing and communications career that has taken her from mining, through chocolate to telecoms and now higher education. Starting her career in 1985 with a marketing sponsorship for ECC Limited, based in St Austell, and completed a BSc in Business Studies at Bradford University, with a six-month spell in Milan. This was followed by a move to Mars confectionery and subsequently BT, where she held various senior marketing and communication roles with responsibility for integrated customer-facing campaigns.

Jane joined the University of Sheffield in 2004 as Director of Marketing. During her five years at Sheffield Jane rebranded the University and led a programme to embed customer service within the organisation, whilst increasing international students by 40% in just one year. She also represented the University at five international conferences on marketing and recruitment issues and chaired the marketing committee of Sheffield City Trust.

However, in 2009 the South West proved irresistible and Jane joined Plymouth University as Director of Marketing and Communications. She completed an MBA in 2010 at Ashridge and her dissertation was on Marketing Services at Plymouth and Sheffield. Holding the role of Director of External Relations until January 2014 Jane was responsible for, Stakeholder Engagement, press and Media, Communications, Development & Alumni and Marketing and Digital Operations. She also helped as the marketing chair on Destination Plymouth. In 2013 she was appointed a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

In February 2014 Jane joined the Executive team at the University of Exeter as its inaugural Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs. Leading a team of over 60 staff focusing on communications, marketing, digital and stakeholder engagement she has initiated a number of projects to put Exeter firmly on the map as a world class university.

As a Cornish girl, aged 16, her first experience of higher education was at a politics summer school in Exeter; now years later Jane is very proud to be back at the University helping today’s students choose Exeter.