Monthly Archives: February 2015

Kent is first UK university to sponsor a BritWeek award

The University has become an official sponsor of BritWeek’s 2015 Los Angeles event to highlight the creative fusion between the USA and the UK.

In partnership with BritWeek in Los Angeles (21 April – 3 May 2015), Kent will launch an Innovation in Academia Award. This will honour an individual whose professional accomplishments have made a significant and lasting impact in the field of higher education and whose work and character have earned the respect and admiration of their professional colleagues. Nominations are open to those who are from or who have studied in Europe and are currently working, or have worked, in American higher education.

The deadline for nominations is 9 March. Further information and how to nominate someone for the Award is available here.

The Award winner will be announced at the event by the University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Dame Julia Goodfellow. Kent alumnus and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist and columnist David Horsey, currently a political commentator with the Los Angeles Times, will host the ceremony.

Kent is the first UK university to sponsor BritWeek , which celebrates creativity and innovation between the UK and the USA. Formed as a non-profit organisation in Los Angeles in 2007, BritWeek now holds events in Los Angeles, Miami, Orange County (California), Orlando and San Francisco. Alongside its weekly events, it also hosts and publicly supports a number of events open to the general public that focus on the British contribution to film, fashion, music, the automotive industry and science.

The BritWeek event will coincide with the University’s 50th Anniversary alumni celebrations in Los Angeles 1 – 3 May.

Other BritWeek sponsors include UK Trade & Investment, Virgin Atlantic, Jaguar, British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA), Marks and Spencer, Microsoft, McLaren Beverley Hills, Spotify and Brands of Britain.

Invicta Voices, Kent’s first alumni choir

The University’s 50th anniversary celebrations have coincided with the establishment of Kent’s first alumni choir.

Formed by alumnus Matt Bamford (Eliot 2010), who conducted the University’s Chamber Choir in 2013-2014, Invicta Voices is based in London and comprises University alumni who are all former Chamber Choir members.

‘The idea for an alumni choir first came about after discussions that many members of last year’s choir were graduating and moving to London and wanted to carry on singing together. Sue Wanless, Director of Music, had also ‘sown the seed’ earlier in the year by mentioning the idea of pulling together an alumni group of singers who were based in London’ explains Matt.

Invicta Voices meets bi-weekly, exploring a wide range of choral music from Byrd and Hassler right the way through to more contemporary music from Gjeilo and Whitacre.

The Choir will be officially launched at their inaugural concert on Friday 27 March at 8pm in the Colyer-Fergusson Hall, Canterbury Campus.

‘We are incredibly excited about our inaugural concert in March. The opportunity to return to Canterbury and sing in the fantastic Colyer-Fergusson Hall will be a very special occasion for all those involved, including those who fundraised for the Hall in the early stages but are yet to see the new building’ says Matt.

Tickets for the concert are free and available to all.

To find out more about Invicta Voices, please contact

Learn about the reality of forensic psychology

A short course at the University beginning in March will offer Kent alumni and members of the public an opportunity to learn about the reality of forensic psychology.

The ten-week evening course, taught by some of the UK’s leading forensic psychology experts, will take participants beyond the fiction of TV and film representations of the subject to present a fascinating introduction to the psychology of victims, offenders, crime investigation and rehabilitation.

Members of the University’s Centre of Research and Education in Forensic Psychology will highlight famous cases, such as that of Jack the Ripper, to present an insight into murder and profiling, while other parts of the course will focus on juries, stalking and harassment, sex offenders and rehabilitation, and the reliability of eyewitnesses.

The course, costing £150, will consist of a series of 10 one-and-a-half hour lectures taking place at the University’s Canterbury campus every Wednesday from 18.00 – 19.30 between 4 March and 20 May. There will be a two-week Easter break.

The Centre of Research and Education in Forensic Psychology is part of the School of Psychology.

QI Live at Kent

Harry Hill has joined the QI Live at Kent line up!

Harry grew up in Kent and trained as a neurosurgeon at the University of London before starting in comedy. He has an honorary degree from the University of Kent in recognition of his contribution to television and the arts.

We know Harry will make an impact – just look what he got up to when he received his honorary degree!

Unfortunately Olly Double, our Senior Lecturer in Drama and Theatre, is now unable to take part in the show on Monday. We are very grateful that Harry is joining us.

Eve Ainsworth (Eliot 1997) publishes teen novel

Eve Ainsworth (Eliot 1997), who graduated from Kent with a BA (Hons) in Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management in 2000, has had her first teen novel published by children’s publisher Scholastic, as part of a two-book deal.

7 days is a fictional story about bullying, told from two perspectives; the bully and the victim. ‘I wanted to explore both sides of the story, and open up discussions into bullying’ explains Eve. ‘I also wanted to suggest that in some cases, there is more than one victim.’

Eve was inspired to write the novel whilst working with young people. For several years after graduating from Kent, she worked in recruitment, before switching to HR within the education sector. After the birth of her son, Eve moved to a Pastoral Support position at a local secondary school, and later progressed into Child Protection. It was whilst working at the school that she began to write. ‘Working with teens was my inspiration’ she says. ‘Hearing their voices and their stories. So many had experienced bullying and many experienced pressures from outside of school. In my role, I had to speak to both victims of bullies and the perpetrators themselves. Although 7 Days is completely fictional, working directly with young people helped me to flesh out a realistic and honest story.’

She wrote 7 Days whilst being a mother to two young children and holding down a full-time job. However she soon turned this challenge to her advantage. ‘I found that having restricted time meant I really had to commit myself in the hour that I had available. Every evening, whilst my husband was putting the children to bed, I would make myself write.’

Eve is currently editing her second book, which will be published next year. Her aspirations are to continue writing, and work in as many schools and libraries as she can. ‘I love working with young people and I don’t want to stop’ she says.

She advises anyone thinking of writing a book to read around the genre they are interested in, to really understand how voice and characterisation can work in texts. ‘The next stage is up to you’ says Eve. ‘Many people want to write, but never see it through. If you have an idea, scrawl it down. It can take years to master your own natural voice, so the more you do it, the better you’ll be. Don’t give up.’

7 Days by Eve Ainsworth is available now