How to get support from other parties while self isolating

As well as help and support within the University and the Student Unions, there is a lot of external support for students regarding health issues and wellbeing.

NHS 111

This is the NHS urgent help advice line. It’s fast, easy and free. Call 111 when you need medical help fast but it’s not a 999 emergency.

Medical Centres

For contact with your GP or a nurse practitioner, contact the surgery you are registered with.

Samaritans

Samaritans is a registered charity aimed at providing emotional support to anyone in emotional distress, struggling to cope, or at risk of suicide throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland, often through their telephone helpline. Please call 116 123, which is free to call, or you can email them at jo@samaritans.org.

Big White Wall

Wherever you are located, you can access free, 24/7 online support for issues around mental health and wellbeing. The Big White Wall (BWW) is a Care Quality Commission registered service recognised nationally through awards by the NHS and is a safe environment overseen by qualified therapists called Wall Guides.

In order to gain access to this service click on the BWW link using your Kent email address to gain access only. As part of the registration process, do not use your KENT account password for this service. Note, you may, upon completion of the registration process change your contact email address to a non-Kent email account. Big White Wall take privacy very seriously, so please read their privacy policy for more information.

Access Big White Wall

Please use the following code: KENT1

Man in a white t-shirt in a sitting yoga position on a mat

Mindfulness online

The University is now offering guided mindfulness sessions online to staff and students to help get through this stressful time. Staff from Student Support and Wellbeing and the Student Learning Advisory Service are working in collaboration to provide 4 sessions of mindfulness practice a week.

This will go on throughout the Easter vacation until the end of summer term. Lorraine Millard (SSW) who is leading the sessions said, “I run regular mindfulness sessions at university, so when social distancing and working from home was imposed I wanted to find a way to continue to provide support to students and colleagues.” So far, the team have hosted 3 mindfulness sessions online; in total 23 students located in 6 different countries have logged-in.

The sessions are 40 minutes long and there is a focus on dealing with anxiety and strategies for remaining focused. This is particularly important for students and staff at the university who are isolated from each other, but are having to continue to study and work. Louise Frith commented that she and her colleagues in SLAS are finding that, “at a time of heightened personal and social stress, many students are understandably worried about their ability to focus and perform well in exams, dissertations and coursework.”

The sessions are live and run using Zoom. Anyone can join at any time by following the links:

For students:

Starting from Wednesday 01 April

Starting from Friday 17 April

For staff

Starting from Thursday 02 April

Coronavirus

No-detriment policy agreed for this academic year

We know that the last few weeks have been difficult for you, and many of you are worried about sitting exams and completing other assessments. As a result of close working between Kent Union and the University, we are pleased to announce that Kent will be implementing a no-detriment policy that will safeguard the contribution of your academic performance in the outcome of your studies for this academic year.

This is an extraordinary time and the uncertainties brought about by the impact of COVID-19 have led us to develop a framework which is both flexible and academically robust. It is also designed to support you through a range of scenarios and individual circumstances. We know you have all been affected in different ways and the circumstances you find yourselves in will vary from person to person. Our approach will hopefully give you comfort in knowing that under the no-detriment policy your final average overall mark for the stage will not be impacted adversely as a consequence of the current conditions caused by COVID-19.

These changes come from the incredible amount of feedback, discussions and cooperative work from Kent Union’s elected full-time officers and from our academic colleagues. We would like to thank you for your input, patience and understanding. We are confident that we have developed a set of principles which will ensure that you will not be academically disadvantaged in any way during the summer assessment period.

We would ask you also to note that due to the rules of professional recognition status in a limited number of subjects, we may not be permitted to apply the ‘safety net’ policy to specific professionally recognised programmes. These are not decisions that we can control and if this is the case you will be communicated with separately by your School.

Further details on this no-detriment policy will be made available by Wednesday 8 April 2020 at the latest, but we wanted to let you know as soon as possible that this approach is being adopted. In such uncertain times, we hope that this is one thing less for you to worry about.

Please do refer to our Exams and assessments FAQs page – we will be continuing to update them.

With our very best wishes

Christina and Sasha

Professor Christina Hughes                             Sasha Langeveldt
Interim Director of Student Services              President, Kent Union

 

Kent staff and ambulance paramedic loading personal protective equipment into car

Kent’s Forensic Science team donates personal protective equipment to NHS

Kent’s Forensic Science team has donated a range of personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Infection Prevention and Control Team at the South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust.

PPE such as oversuits, goggles, face masks and shoe covers, which is utilised by Kent forensic science students during crime scene assessments, has been provided to protect NHS staff and patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr Chris Shepherd, Director of Undergraduate Studies for Forensic Science, said: ‘I would like to thank Phil Marsh from our lab team for helping out with this effort. I am extremely proud that the School can play a role in fighting COVID-19 and hopefully this donation will keep people safe and well during this difficult time.’

 

Dr Paul March-Russell, lecturer in the Department of Comparative Literature

Dr Paul March-Russell, lecturer in the Department of Comparative Literature

Dr Paul March-Russell, lecturer in the Department of Comparative Literature, has won the ‘Outstanding Reviewer Award’ from the online journal Humanities.

The ‘Humanities Editorial Board and Editorial Team’ give this award in recognition of the ‘the time and energy given by reviewers in checking manuscripts submitted to Humanities. It is due to their efforts that the high quality of the journal and quick turnaround are maintained.’

Paul says: “Peer reviewing is integral to the academic process. Without it, we can’t distinguish academic work, which we can rely on and trust, from other kinds of fake news. This is why I am honoured to be a peer reviewer and to receive this award.”

Logo for University of Kent Graduate School Prizes 2020

Nominations for Graduate School Prizes 2020

Now more than ever it is important to recognise the brilliant work that is carried out by our research community and those who work with postgraduate students at Kent. Help us celebrate this exceptional community by nominating a colleague or student for a Graduate School Prize.

These annual prizes recognises the excellence of Kent’s researchers and the outstanding work carried out by academic and administrative staff members in support of postgraduate research and education. The Graduate School Prizes will award prizes in the following categories:

  • Postgraduate Researcher
  • Postgraduate Administrator
  • School Director of Graduate Studies
  • Postgraduate Teacher
  • Research Degree Supervisor
  • Early Career Research Staff

Apply or nominate a candidate now via the Graduate School website where you will find the criteria for each prize and a nomination form.

Deadline for nominations is Wednesday 6 May at 23.59

Students standing on the business start-up journey programme

Four students share Business Start-up Journey prize money

A virtual pitching final saw four student start-ups share the prize money in this year’s Business Start-Up Journey.

Measures to combat the COVID-19 pandemic meant the programme’s usual Dragons Den format had to switch to a virtual contest, with students pre-recording their pitches for submission to the judges.

The businesses were scored in categories including sustainability, scalability, innovation and financial viability.

From a strong field, the winners were:

  • John Arceno and Alan Gurung with YCampus – a way to bring empty high street shops back into use as multi-purpose hubs
  • Lewis Squire with Reality Room – using Augmented Reality (AR) to rethink Escape Rooms and bring education to life.

Lewis, a Stage 2 Kent Business School student from Canterbury, John, a final year Biology student, and Alan, in his final year studying Philosophy and Politics, will receive £1,000 per business towards their start-up costs.

Runners up were:

  • Phoebe Thompson with By Phoebe – a new product to keep false eyelashes dry in the shower
  • Molly Walsh with Ignite – a vegan-friendly and sustainable pre and post-workout drink.

Phoebe, a Stage 4 KBS Business and Management student from Medway campus, and Molly, a Stage 2 Sports Science student also from Medway, receive £500 each towards their start-up costs.

Other businesses in the pitching finals included RR Collective, a sustainable fashion business upcycling Nigerian rubbish into jewellery and Talking Heads, a documentary film exploring ways to reunite a fragmented UK society.

Lewis said: “The Business Start Up Journey has been an incredible experience allowing us to create and develop our business ideas. Through the help of the amazing mentors, program leaders and industry professionals, I have been able to build The Reality Room idea into something tangible. Thank you to all the judges for the feedback and opportunity to progress The Reality Room further! Now the next steps in developing the software and hardware in order to bring it to life!”

Judges included Daniel Rubin, founder of the international footwear brand, Dune London, Dean Johnson, Managing Director of international medi-tech company Haag Streit UK and Emay Enemokwu, a KBS graduate and Business Start-Up Journey finalist who founded the successful streetwear brand Jehu-cal.

The Business Start-Up Journey is supported by philanthropic donation including funding from Santander Universities. It is part of the University’s Study Plus programme and open to students from any subject or level of study.

The Business Start-Up Journey takes students through all the stages of setting up a business – from finding and testing an idea to building marketing plans and understanding financials. It offers a combination of exciting practical and interactive workshops and one-to-one support.

All of the finalists will continue to be supported by the ASPIRE (Accelerator Space for Innovation and Responsible Enterprise) which is the University’s flagship space for student business support and entrepreneurial skills development.

Those ways include

  • One to one support from the ASPIRE team of entrepreneurs in residence
  • Access to mentors
  • Financial grants to support for attending relevant expos and conferences
  • Funding

Find out more about the ASPIRE and the Business Start-up Journey

Register your interest in next year’s Business Start-Up Journey programme.

 

 

Coronavirus

Academic Registrar’s student update – 2 April 2020

Thank you very much for your understanding and patience whilst we have been continuing to review our examinations processes and finalise everything necessary to accommodate the move to online. The examination timetable is now available to view via the Student Data System (SDS). Should there be further changes to the timetable, we will let you know by email.

Please also be assured that we have undertaken a review of our instructions to Boards of Examiners in order to ensure appropriate mitigation due to the COVID-19 crisis. Further information on this as well as guidance about how your examinations will be delivered online and how you will access, complete and submit these, will be sent to you soon. In all we do, we are committed to the principle that your academic progress will not be disadvantaged due to these circumstances.

If you have any questions about your timetable, please contact your Academic School. If you have any concerns or issues regarding your ability to undertake your exams online, then in such cases you should contact exams2020@kent.ac.uk.

We hope that you all continue to be safe and well and adjusting to studying online and please keep referring to our Coronavirus – information for students pages which we are updating whenever we have more information.

With my very best wishes to you and your families.

Yours sincerely,

Mary Hughes

Academic Registrar

Cecil 2020

Watch CeCIL’s Annual Lecture: ‘Have you seen dignity?’

Kent’s Centre for Critical International Law (CeCIL) has released a recording of this year’s Annual Lecture in which Professor Susan Marks, from the London School of Economics, offers a critical exploration of dignity and its worldliness.

Professor Marks filmed her talk ‘Have you seen dignity?’ at Kent earlier this month (without an audience) after restrictions imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic meant the event could not proceed as originally planned.

Speaking also on behalf of Dr Sara Kendall who co-directs CeCIL with him, Dr Luis Eslava said:: ‘Having it recorded for online circulation was our way to express our solidarity with our friends and colleagues across the world who are facing, like communities in general, many challenges posed by the current crisis and who are searching for new ways to make sense of it.’

Professor Marks’s talk (the title of which is inspired by lyrics from the Bob Dylan song “Dignity”) begins by tracking the word dignity as it pops up in everyday life. She goes on to consider dignity within the context of academic writing across the disciplines of philosophy, legal scholarship, health and social care, sociology, and anthropology. Finally, she discusses the politics of dignity, indignity and indignation.

Professor Marks’s research is concerned with international law, human rights and the global political economic order. She is the author of The Riddle of All Constitutions, International Human Rights Lexicon (co-authored with Andrew Chapman) and A False Tree of Liberty. She is the editor of International Law on the Left. Her research seeks to bring insights from critical social theory to the study of international law and human rights.

CeCIL is an innovative research centre at Kent Law School which aims to foster critical approaches to the field of international law.  

half-marathon runners

Over £3,500 raised for charities by local runners.

Two members of Kent Hospitality staff helped raise the money as part of a six person team that met through a local Beginners to Runners club.

The six friends from Faversham were each supposed to be running in the London Landmarks Half Marathon for charity last weekend on 29 March. However, when the event was cancelled over two weeks ago due to Coronavirus the group took action.

Determined to still run their first ever half marathon for their charities, they instead decided to run a week early on Saturday 21 March by creating a Local Landmarks Half Marathon while maintaining the social distancing measures that were in place at the time to ensure everyone’s safety.

Donning their event themed leggings all six women, including Vanessa Corker and Lyn Scarfe from Kent Hospitality, successfully completed their 13.1 mile route around the lanes outside Faversham in two and a half hours. Between them they collectively raised over £3,500 for their chosen charities including Tommy’s, Age UK, Breast Cancer Now, Demelza Children’s Hospice and MacMillan Cancer Care.

When the half-marathon is officially reorganised all six have confirmed they will do it all over again on the official London Landmarks Half Marathon Route to raise even more money for their charities.