Award-winning Professor Laurence Pearl is stepping down as Head of School of Life Sciences after more than 8 years at its helm.

He is leaving the position to focus on his research.

Prof. Pearl recently won one of the UK’s most prestigious honours in biochemistry, the Novartis Medal and Prize 2018. In addition, Cancer Research have awarded him a 5 year grant for his work.

In a press release Prof. Pearl, said: “It has been a pleasure and an honour to lead Life Sciences during such an exciting time in the University’s history. I will be handing the School on in a very robust state, with outstanding league table rankings in research and teaching, a fantastic new building coming in 2020, and a real sense of confidence and common purpose amongst the academic and professional services staff, across the broad range of our activities and interests”.

However, his tenure as the Head of Life Sciences has not been without controversy, with The Badger recently running a report on some of the difficulties faced by its students. The students condemned the school’s administrative errors, claiming malpractice that did not tally with Sussex Life Science’s commendable ranking and National Student Survey (NSS) scores.

One postgraduate commenting on the article about their experience, stated: “[it is an] extremely poor and toxic place, this Life Sciences Department”.

Professor Pearl took to Twitter to air his grievances about the article, dismissing its contents as fake news, while demanding an interview as a right of reply. He has been approached by The Badger three times for an interview, and has failed to take up these offers.

The school’s Deputy Head, Professor Sarah Guthrie, will become the acting Head of School.

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