Monthly Archives: November 2018

Estates Department

Estates Department- Structural Changes and Customer Service

From 1 December 2018, we are introducing a new organisational structure for the Projects and Maintenance & Technical Services teams within the Estates Department.   These changes will facilitate the delivery of improvements around governance, strategy, asset management, statutory compliance, financial and project management as well as the long term maintenance of the estate.

The Maintenance & Technical Services function will be responsible for the delivery of a coherent maintenance plan for the estate including: long term maintenance of the infrastructure, investment planning, business continuity, compliance assurance, minor works projects, planned and reactive maintenance.

The Projects team will focus on the delivery of major capital projects and high value minor works.  Systems and processes will be refined with new arrangements introduced for the approval, planning, monitoring, management and reporting of all projects.

The new structures of these teams and of the overall Estates Department can be viewed on our web page. You can also view and download the Estates booklet ‘Who we are, what we do and where we are going’ from our web pages. This booklet includes an overview of our strategic vision, core values, key objectives and team structure.

These changes demonstrate our commitment to continuously improve our services and meet the needs of our customers.  The feedback from our inaugural Customer Feedback Survey, conducted earlier this year, highlighted that 83% of our customers feel Estates Department staff act professionally, however there were some areas for improvement, notably around transparency in our operations and how we communicate to our customers.

We are addressing these issues and launched the Estates Customer Services Centre in June this year.  The Centre acts as the key contact point for all enquiries regarding services provided by the Estates Department.  The Customer Services Advisers take complete ownership of all enquiries, ensuring customers are kept fully informed on the progress of their enquiry.  We have introduced a Customer Services Policy and a robust complaints procedure for customers to use when they are not totally happy with the service they have received.

Our Customer Services Policy explains our guiding principles and can be found on our web pages here: Customer Services Policy.

The Customer Services team can be contacted by email: or by telephone: extension 16666 (or if dialling externally: 01227 816 666).


Peter Czarnomski

Director of Estates


‘Conserving Brazil’s mountain-top frogs’

The next monthly DICE talk will be held on 13th December and given by Dr Bela Barata, DICE, discussing ‘Conserving Brazil’s mountain-top frogs’. Bela will talk about her fieldwork experiences and her recently completed PhD research, which looked at the impacts of climate change on some of Brazil’s most endangered amphibian species.

December’s DICE event begins with mince pies and drinks from 17.00-18.00 in SAC Marlowe Foyer. The talk will follow in Grimond Lecture Theatre 2,  from 18.00-19.00 and is open to everyone in the community.

The series is also available on YouTube.

Pre-Retirement Planning Seminar

In conjunction with Planned Future, we are running two Pre-Retirement seminars this academic year. The whole day seminar aims to give participants knowledgeable advice in regards to all aspects of planning for retirement, looking at areas such as finance, health and lifestyle.

The dates are:

  • Tuesday 15th of January 2019: 9.00 to 4.30 pm
  • Thursday 4th of April 2019: 9.00 to 4.30 pm

All staff, all ages welcome – it’s about planning ahead. Please book through Staff Connect.

Nostalgia podcast with Kyla Greenhorn

The latest episode of the podcast series on ‘Nostalgia’, hosted by Dr Chris Deacy, Reader in Theology and Religious Studies in the Department of Religious Studies, has just been released.

In this week’s interview, Chris interviews Kyla Greenhorn, who is studying for a PhD in Religious Studies at the University of Kent. Kyla was born in Kansas and she discusses the reasons why so many American students choose to study in the UK. She decided from a young age that she wanted to move to Europe, and now sees the US as a foreign country. She talks about how her family is predominantly Republican and pro-Trump, and how this doesn’t sit well with her being a member of the LGBT community.

Kyla comes from an evangelical background and her sexuality affected her entire family dynamics, especially after she came out as bisexual to her mother. She discusses with Chris how the experience changed her, and how she can now make a stand for causes she believes in. Musically, Kyla reminisces about the boy bands she grew up listening to and how her musical tastes these days range from heavy metal to church music and how music is the most consistent thing in her life. She also explains why Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is her favourite movie and we learn what happened when she once performed a scene from A Streetcar Named Desire.

We learn why at school Kyla tended to avoid Religious Studies, and how and why she subsequently found an unexpected way into the subject. The conversation then moves to her experience of dealing with bigotry when it comes to gender and sexuality and to societal prejudices towards homosexuality.

To find out more about opportunities for further study in Religious Studies and other subjects, visit

Successful Lawson Trust bid for Medway student bursarial support

The Raymond and Blanche Lawson Charitable Trust generously agreed to grant the Medway Student Support Fund a sum of £5,000 at their board meeting on 8 November 2018.

The Trust was created in 1980 by Tonbridge-based property businessman, Raymond Lawson, and his wife Blanche, and supports a wide range of charitable causes from hospices to children’s charities in Kent and Sussex. The grant money will provide bursaries to support those students most in need of financial assistance at the three universities based at the Medway Campus.

New book offers rich interdisciplinary analysis of archaic Greek word “nomos”

A new book by Kent Law School Reader, Dr Thanos Zartaloudis, delves deep into history and culture to offer a rich, interdisciplinary analysis of “nomos”, an archaic Greek word that, today, is often reduced to “law”.

In The Birth of Nomos (Edinburgh University Press), Dr Zartaloudis comprehensively analyses ancient Greek sources along with material drawn from legal history, philosophy, philology, linguistics, ancient history, poetry, archaeology, ancient musicology and anthropology to explore how the word nomos (and related words) has been used across centuries of use. He assembles a genealogical history of the word to reveal a richness that is not reflected in its classical and modern usage as simply “law” or “law-making”.

The book draws on works by ancient Greek philosophers, poets and tragedians including Homer, Hesiod, Alcman, Pindar, Archilochos, Theognis, Heraclitus, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides and Plato. It includes extracts from ancient primary sources, in both the original and English translation, to analyse how nomos has been used in the literary evidence and in context.

The Birth of Nomos also considers how nomos has been used by contemporary philosophers, including Agamben, Foucault, Heidegger, Schmitt, Deleuze and Axelos, and re-examines their interpretations. In a review of the book, philosopher Giorgio Agamben says: ‘Thanos Zartaloudis’ The Birth of Nomos renovates entirely our understanding of a fundamental term in the history of Western culture. From this unprecedented book, it becomes clear that we will need to rethink all of the themes that our ethical and political tradition has gathered around the word “Law”.’

Dr Zartaloudis is a Reader in Legal Theory and History at Kent Law School.  He is Co-Director of Kent’s Centre for Interdisciplinary Spatial Studies (KISS) and Co-Director of the Centre for Research in Political Theology (Birkbeck Law School/Kent Law School).

Leadership Bulletin 28 November 2018

Read the latest Leadership Bulletin (28 November 2018)

The latest issue of the Leadership Bulletin, designed to give an overview of key developments at Kent, is now available.

The latest issue (28 November 2018) includes a congratulations from our Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Karen Cox, to our most recent graduates and a thank you to the University Council.

There is also an update on Executive Group meetings, including a discussion of the planning round with Faculty Deans on 20 November and an EG Awayday focusing on organisational design on 26 November.

There are also updates on the government’s Settled Status scheme, which EU citizens working at Kent are eligible to take part in, and the launch of a new BSc in Human Geography.

The Bulletin is distributed fortnightly to all members of the Senior Leadership Forum to cascade to staff in schools and professional service departments. If you haven’t received your copy yet, you can read the bulletin online.

Find out more about the Leadership Bulletin and see previous issues on the OVC webpages.

James Devine

Kent graduate becomes Chief Executive of Medway NHS Foundation Trust

Congratulations to James Devine, a graduate from our Professional Practice MSc, on becoming the Chief Executive of Medway NHS Foundation Trust, known as Medway Hospital.

James graduated in 2013 with the Master’s in Professional Practice and is very fond of his study time in Medway: ‘My employment prospects have improved vastly. Not just having a degree on my record, but the new skill set, confidence and proved competence are all benefits to studying this programme. This degree allows for greater insight, personal reflection and the time to challenge yourself to complete a unique degree programme. It lends itself to each student focusing on their own practice and actually improving it by taking the time to reflect on excising practice based on reality, as well as theory and literature.’

The Master’s in Professional Practice is one of a number of part-time, flexible, work-related programmes for working professionals offered by the Centre for Professional Practice. Its programmes and short courses including the Professional Practice MSc and Introduction to Masters-Level Study, have been specifically designed to meet the needs of those who wish to develop their academic ability while maintaining their professional role. Students may be eligible for loans for both undergraduate and postgraduate study (subject to eligibility criteria).

For more information about the Centre and its programmes, see the CPP webpages,  email  or telephone 01634 888929.

Wellbeing Zone launch prize draw

There’s another great reason for signing-up on our new Staff Wellbeing Zone this month!

Occupational Health are running a prize draw running throughout November. The main prize is two coaching sessions with an external coach to explore any element of wellbeing you wish: weight loss, smoking cessation, mindfulness.  There are also three runner-up prizes of massages at Kent Sport.

The draw will be carried out by the Wellbeing Zone hosting company, Revitalised, so all employee details will continue to remain totally confidential.  Once you have been notified by them of your success, you need to contact Brenda Brunsdon, Occupational Health & Wellbeing Team Manager, and she will give you the details of how to claim your prize.

Just to remind you, this is what the Wellbeing Zone can offer to help you to improve and manage your wellbeing:

  • A 12 sector wellbeing assessment and advice on how to improve in all these 12 areas. You can make changes and goals and re-assess to follow your progress.
  • The Zone includes exercise programmes, weight loss advice, recipes and a calorie counter. There are also articles, videos and TED talks on all aspects of wellbeing including mental health, mindfulness and stress reduction.

Launched on 1 November, the Zone has been set up and will be maintained by external specialists, Revitalised, whose other clients include Royal Mail, the MoD and Virgincare. All the information you enter into the Wellbeing Zone is totally confidential and not accessible to any University department or individual.  

Take a look at the new Wellbeing Zone website now and register using the code KENT 1, or log-in (top right-hand button) using your Kent sign-in details.

alcohol and drugs policy

Alcohol and Drugs Policy

The University of Kent is committed to safeguarding the health, safety and welfare of its students, and accepts its responsibility by raising awareness of the risks of alcohol and drug misuse. We respect the privacy of students, but will be concerned if a student’s behaviour impairs his/her conduct, safety or academic performance and/or adversely affects other students, staff, campus life or the wider community.

The University of Kent policies and penalties associated with drug and alcohol related offences are outlined in the following documents:

1. University Policy Statement Concerning Alcohol (pdf)

2. University Policy Statement Concerning Drugs (pdf)

These are a part of the general regulations.

If you or any of your friends have any concerns about these issues, you can access support via Student Support and Wellbeing and the Masters’ Offices, more information can be found here: