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FOI: Who we are and what we do

FOI: Who we are and what we do

Organisational information, locations and contacts, constitutional and legal governance.

This section explains the way in which the College is governed and how decisions are made. It gives information on the legal status of the College, explains which individual members of the College or group are responsible for particular functions, and how they fit into the overall organisation. Information from committee minutes may in some instances be exempt from disclosure where it contains personal information, or information that could damage the commercial interests of the College or threatens the health and safety of specific individuals.

Legal framework

The College of Saint Mary Magdalene, one of 31 Colleges in the University of Cambridge, commonly called Magdalene College, was re-founded by Lord Audley of Walden in 1542. The 1542 Charter provides that the College is ‘for the advancement of knowledge, arts, learning and virtue and for the advancement of moral studies in the University of Cambridge.’ The College became a registered charity on 18 August 2010. The Charity Commission of England and Wales is therefore the principal regulator for the College.

The College is a legally independent corporation within the collegiate University of Cambridge. A system of University-wide committees exists to plan and discuss the joint affairs of the collegiate University.

The Governing Body of the College comprises the Master and the Official and Professorial Fellows and they are de facto the trustees of the College. This body is constituted and regulated in accordance with the College Statutes (revised 1997) and is responsible for the strategic direction of the College, for its administration and for the management of its finances and assets. It meets at least seven times a year under the chairmanship of the Master. The Presidents of the Middle Combination Room (MCR) and the Junior Combination Room (JCR) attend for unreserved business.

The Governing Body acknowledges its responsibility to act with prudence and care and to ensure the College complies with relevant laws and regulations. The Governing Body elects all Fellows of the College. Information is given to new Fellows regarding the College and how it is governed.

How the institution is organised

The Governing Body is concerned with the strategic position of the College, its good government, the promotion of the College’s interests, and the maintenance and improvement of education and learning. There are a range committees within the College, each dealing with specific areas of the College's operation. Student representatives are invited to attend the unreserved business of the Governing Body and attend other College committees.

The principal officers of the College include the Master, the President, the Senior Tutor, the Fellow for Development, the Dean, the Chaplain, the Admissions Tutor the Graduate Tutor and the Senior Bursar. The Master is the chairman of the trustees and has a duty to promote the welfare of the College and to ensure the College maintains an appropriate learning environment for its members. The President, as a senior fellow, supports the interests of the fellowship and acts as the vice-master. The Senior Tutor has day-to-day responsibility for the admission, education and welfare of undergraduate and postgraduate students and supporting the research activities of the College. The Governing Body appoints Admissions Tutors to support the Senior Tutor in the selection of suitable students for admission to the College. The Senior Bursar has responsibility for the estates, finance and administration of the College.

Fellows of the College are members of the Senior Combination Room. A list of the Fellowship is available in the Our People section.

The educational work of the College is performed by the Senior Tutor, Directors of Studies, College Lecturers and Supervisors. An up to date list of the Directors of Studies is available in paper form on request; a charge will be made. The responsibility for teaching postgraduate students lies with the relevant faculties or departments of the University. Further advice may be obtained from the Graduate Tutor.

The College also provides a Tutor for each student and access to other forms of pastoral care, including a Chaplain, Nurse and Counsellors. Together the Dean and the Tutors have responsibility for maintaining standards of behaviour and good order in the College.

The Cambridge University Student Handbook provides information about life as a student at Cambridge. It is published by the University and complements the information provided by Magdalene College

The educational work and research activities of the college is supported by the College Staff who are organised into specialist Departments and Offices. 

Location and contact details

Magdalene College is located on Magdalene Street beside the River Cam. The full postal address is:

Magdalene College
Magdalene Street

Information relating to companies wholly owned by Magdalene College

Cloverleaf Ltd
The College operates a trading company, Cloverleaf Ltd, which is responsible for the design and construction of new buildings at the College. Cloverleaf has its own publication scheme.

Student Activities

Postgraduate Students belong to the Middle Combination Room (MCR).

Undergraduate Students belong to the Junior Combination Room (JCR).

Members of the JCR and the MCR elect annually an executive committee to support and promote their welfare. The College makes grants to these student bodies, as well as to sports and cultural societies.