Monthly Archives: March 2021

KentVision launching on 19 April

KentVision, a new, simpler way of supporting the student journey, will be available to staff from 19 April.

KentVision brings together a number of different administrative processes to help us work better together. It includes a new Student Record System to replace the Student Data System (SDS) and introduce easier, more consistent ways to input, manage and process our student data

A Staff Webchat on KentVision, led by Richard Reece, William Collier, Paul Sales and Antony Brenton will take place on Wednesday 7 April, from 12.00-13.00.  Ahead of the session, it would be helpful to have as many questions as possible so we can do our best to cover everything in the time. To do this, please sign-up via the form where you can include your question when prompted.

An initial communication will be sent to all students on Tuesday 6 April informing them of the closure of SDS and introduction of the KentVision system.

Training and support

KentVision is due to go live on Monday 19 April. A range of options for seeking guidance and raising issues is available now on the KentVision webpages.

To help staff move to the new student management system, the KentVision webpages also include information on the impact on other IT systems during the transition week (w/b 12 April) and overall changes relating to timetabling, with specific reference to week numbers, module codes and a view of the new KentVision student portal.

Find out more about KentVision

Congratulations to our new Fellows and Senior Fellows of the HEA

The Centre for the Study of Higher Education congratulates the following colleagues who applied for Senior Fellowship and Fellowship of Advance HE (formerly the Higher Education Academy) through the Route to Recognition for Experienced Staff (RRES), and successfully gained national recognition for their leadership, excellence, expertise and commitment to professionalism in teaching and learning.

Senior Fellowship

Fellowship

Addressing Misogyny in Higher Education

In light of recent national news events, as a University we are re-enforcing our commitment to fostering a positive working environment where all staff and students are treated fairly, with dignity, courtesy, respect and consideration.

Misogyny is the hatred of, contempt for, or prejudice against women or girls that manifests in numerous ways, including social exclusion, sex discrimination, hostility, belittling of women, disenfranchisement of women, violence against women, and sexual objectification. All of us have a responsibility to create an environment, which is free from harassment, bullying, unlawful discrimination and victimisation.

A new series of Active Bystander training will help ensure that staff can play their part in preventing any inappropriate behaviour.

Georgina Randsley de Moura, Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Academic Strategy, Planning and Performance, comments: ‘As part of our commitment to our staff and student community, I am pleased to support the Active Bystander initiative. We value our community, and therefore it is our responsibility to create and nurture an environment, which is safe, supportive, and free from all forms of bullying and harassment. This initiative is an important step forward.’

About the training

The Active Bystander training sessions will take place on 28 April, 19 May and 23 June, from 14.00-15.30.

Each virtual session will include:
• A video demonstrating bystander apathy
• Specific references for the HE Sector
• High-profile examples of inappropriate/unacceptable behaviour
• Decision-making techniques to help people overcome fear and self-doubt when faced with a challenging situation
• Assertiveness techniques to give them the confidence and tools to speak out, whether they are dealing with the challenge directly or calling for help from others.

The session will include group discussion and interactivity and each delegate will receive a ‘Active Bystander’ toolkit booklet. 40 places are available at each session – book your place now via Staff Connect.

Find out more

Kent has a zero tolerance approach to any behaviour that violates an individual in person or online, and encourages the reporting of such instances. You can find out more on our EDI webpages.

Kent’s key role in shaping the Creative Estuary

From Emma Wilcox, Project Director for Creative Estuary

The University is helping to shape the Creative Estuary, a four-year funded project driving forward the creative and economic evolution of the Thames Estuary. The aim is to unlock its potential as an international production hub and as a collaborative, inspiring place to live and work.

The stunning Creative Estuary place brand was launched in November 2020, supported by our inaugural Creative Estuary Champions, including Kent Vice-Chancellor, Professor Karen Cox. The event was a huge success with over 300 virtual attendees and received fulsome praise and positive feedback. You can watch a film linked to the brand launch here: https://vimeo.com/483767452

Under the Creative Estuary banner, the University of Kent is leading a consortium of public sector and cultural organisations to support the Thames Estuary Production Corridor. This is an ambitious 30-year vision to unite East London, the North Kent Coast and South Essex to create a world-class centre for creative and cultural production.

In 2019 the creative industries contributed in excess of £110bn to the UK economy. By comparison, the construction industry contributed £129.3bn, the automobile industry contributed £49.1bn, and agriculture £13.0bn. The success of the Production Corridor will contribute to wider national programmes to generate investment, jobs and creative industry opportunities for the whole Thames Estuary, making it one of the most attractive places to live and work in the UK.

Initially funded for three years, the Department for Digital, Culture Media and Sport, awarded us a 12-month extension at the end of 2020 to mitigate the impact and disruption of Covid. This welcome news presents us with an opportunity to reflect on our progress to date and take advantage of the University’s reorganisation and refreshed strategy, to ensure that Kent can make the most of its role in this project. Creative Estuary is now part of the programme that our Institute for Cultural and Creative Industries (iCCi) is delivering.

Coming up

A key part of the Creative Estuary is Estuary 2021. Opening on 22 May, this large-scale arts festival is curated in response to the spectacular Thames Estuary and the lives, landscapes and histories found there. A mix of large scale and intimate visual art, literature, music and film, the festival celebrates culture, creativity, recovery and renewal. Alongside an online discussion and events programme, the physical programme will explore and respond to powerful themes resonant to the Estuary, from the climate, to rebellion and imperial legacy. Re-framed in light of Covid-19, the festival invites visitors to take an epic walk along the stunning coastline of South Essex and North Kent encountering contemporary artworks and performance within the estuary landscape, historic sites and coastal towns.

Commissions include an opening weekend of live broadcast discussion and specially commissioned online artworks exploring the three key themes of climate, rebellion and imperial legacy. The event will be brought together by four artists and curators all of whom know the estuary as home.

Our project team is hugely excited about the many challenges and opportunities ahead, and we look forward to sharing more updates and involving colleagues right across the University.

Emma Wilcox | Project Director for Creative Estuary

Spring concert 18 April

Virtual spring concert for charity – ‘Music in Springtime’

The KSL Music Collective are back with another virtual music concert – Music in Springtime, with performers from the South East, including several alumni of the University of Kent. The concert is organised by Arun Silva (organist and singer), alumnus of the University of Kent. The group includes several musicians who have studied at the university’s Historic Dockyards campus. The performance will be streamed via YouTube on 18 April 2021 at 17.30 and will cover a variety of musical styles, performed virtually by singers and instrumentalists. The aim of this event is to bring music and cheer to audiences in any location, at this time, when live performances and events have been limited.

The group are keen to continue to support a charitable cause through their events. This concert is in aid of the Young Minds Trust, a charity that supports children and young people’s mental health. Donations can be made via the JustGiving page. To access the programme and receive a link to view the concert, viewers should register free via the Eventbrite page or the Facebook event page. All donations will go directly to the Young Minds charity.

Young Minds provide young people with tools to look after their mental health. They give them the space and confidence to get their voices heard and change the world we live in. Coronavirus has had a significant impact on the mental health of young people. Whether they need a reassuring conversation, specialist mental health support, or simply the knowledge that they are not alone in how they are feeling, Young Minds ensures that all young people get support they need as quickly as possible.

Register your free ticket online. 

You can also view the event on Facebook.

Workspace

What’s on: 29 March – 4 April 2021

This week exam timetables will be released, we enter the next stage of the easing of lockdown and you can start to prepare for online exams.

We hope you have a great Easter weekend and manage to get some well-deserved rest!

Using University facilities? Make sure you are tested regularly for Covid-19

Getting tested for Covid-19 couldn’t be easier with testing centres on campus. We are also giving you a free hot drink at Canterbury to say thanks.

Book your asymptomatic Covid-19 test now

 Events for you to try this week:

Browse all events

 Have you read this?

Browse all student support

 Keep an eye on:

Let us know what you think of these updates by emailing communications@kent.ac.uk

Dr Ben Marsh wins international prize for his latest book

Reader in American History, Dr Ben Marsh, has won a major international prize for his book, Unravelled Dreams: Silk and the Atlantic World, 1500-1840, published by Cambridge University Press in April 2020, based on previous research undertaken in 2013 as part of an Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) fellowship. Dr Ben Marsh is the second British recipient of the US Hagley Prize in Business History.

The award committee share, “In Unravelled Dreams: Silk and the Atlantic World, 1500-1840, Ben Marsh spins an epic tale in which imperial conquest meets entrepreneurial failure. Skillfully weaving together the threads of business history, the history of technology, and environmental history set upon the loom of the Atlantic World, Marsh examines the forgotten story of the European obsession with producing this luxury commodity both to replace Asian supplies for home consumption of the ruling elite, and as a profitable imperial export in its own right.”

Dr Marsh attended the virtual prize ceremony on Saturday evening when the announcement was made.

Dr Marsh shares, “Having invested ten years in the work, I was a little paranoid that it might fall into the gaps between sub-fields which I was trying to bridge – like imperial history, economic history, environmental history, and gender history. So to get this recognition is a really heartening affirmation that the time it takes to build these larger research projects is appreciated.”

 

Studyplus

Upcoming Study Plus courses to boost your skills

The Study Plus scheme provides a range of short-term courses and workshops which can enhance your graduate employability skills alongside your main subject specialism.

All events will be delivered virtually either by teams or zoom, details will be on Target Connect and sent to you beforehand. Here’s what’s coming up:

Study Plus – Digital Writing by Jakki  Bendell 30 March 10.30-12.00 

  • Understand how digital writing differs from academic writing
  • Know what to write about and how to engage your readers
  • Plan and structure your content
  • Get to the point quickly

Study Plus – ASPIRE Pitching finals and showcase 31 March 14.00-16.00

Selected student entrepreneurs have the chance to pitch their business to our panel of expert judges and win £1,000 to develop their business. Everyone is welcome to join the showcase and celebrate the Business Start-Up Journey programme.

Study Plus – Leading your Team Session 2 By Leanne Davies 1 April 13.00-15.00

  • Identify the roles and responsibilities of being a leader.
  • Explore different leadership styles and their impact on individual and team performance.
  • Identify what motivates and inspires me and my team to do our best work.
  • Delegate effectively to develop and maintain a performing team.
  • Explore how to give and receive feedback to reinforce or change behaviour.
  • Coaching questions?

Study Plus – Editing and Proofreading by Jakki  Bendell  6 April 14.30-16.00

  • Understand the difference between editing and proofreading, and why they are difficult
  • Know how to check and improve the readability of documents
  • Identify techniques to edit and proofread your document systematically
  • Know what to look for
  • Use free software editing tools

If you book and can no longer attend, please let us know by emailing studyplus@kent.ac.uk as we do have limited places.

We look forward to seeing you at the events and don’t forget to check out Study Plus term 3 events.

 

Students on grass at Canterbury campus

What Covid-19 rules are changing from today – 29 March?

On Monday 29 March we move into the next stage of the Government’s easing of lockdown – but was does that mean for you?

Here is a quick summary of the changes:

  • The rule of 6 returns
    You may meet outdoors, including in private gardens, with 5 other people not in your household (the ‘Rule of 6’) or as 2 households. Indoor socialising is still not permitted.
  • Kent Sport will start to reopen for outdoor sport
    You may take part in outdoor sporting activities including team sports. The planned reopening of our sports facilities is outlined on our Kent Sport website.
  • ‘Stay at home’ rule ends
    The ‘stay at home’ rule ends on 29 March however please continue to minimise travel where you can.

Please see our recent student email for full details.

Get tested for Covid-19 and get a free coffee

If you’re using University facilities, please continue to get regular asymptomatic Covid-19 tests. And to say thanks, we are giving students on our Canterbury campus a free hot drink.

Find out more and book a test.

Generation genome

Generation Genome – student music competition (£1000 prize!)

KMTV launches exclusive University of Kent music competition for national TV series.

Producers of a new national TV series, created by KMTV and the BFI Young Audiences Content Fund, want a University of Kent student to compose original music for the project. The winner will receive a £1,000 cash prize.

‘Generation Genome’ will be an original series of short documentaries and studio-based discussions, designed to engage young people in cutting edge science, placing them at the centre of a debate about genetics and the impact it will have on their future. The series is aimed at 13 to 18-year-olds and will be broadcast across the UK in 2022.

Having already worked with a secondary school student to help create the logo for the series, the team behind the revolutionary production want a University of Kent undergraduate or postgraduate to produce the theme title music, as well as other original score tracks to be used in the documentaries. It’s open to all students at any academic school or division across the University of Kent campuses.

‘It’s a completely blank canvas for students to be creative,’ says Series Producer Andy Richards. ‘We’re really excited to give this opportunity to a University of Kent student. We had a similar competition several years ago for our ‘Kent Tonight’ main theme, which worked really well. We used a melody created by a student and it’s still on air to this day. We fully expect to see similar results from this initiative for Generation Genome.’

Anybody interested in the competition should register their interest by emailing ggenome@kmtv.co.uk by no later than 17.00 on Friday 9 April. Entrants will then be invited to an open virtual briefing session, where composers will be given further instructions and can ask questions of the production team, before creating their entries.

Read more about the Generation Genome series.

Photo Credit: National Cancer Institute. Unsplash