Monthly Archives: October 2021

Christmas shoebox appeal

Christmas shoebox appeal – we need your donations!

Would you like to get involved in our Christmas shoebox appeal to help vulnerable communities across Eastern Europe?

Our Careers and Employability Services (CES) are hosting a wrapping and filling session for students on Monday 15 November – and they need your help with donations of essential items such as:

  • toothbrushes
  • soap
  • small toys
  • hats/gloves
  • hairbrushes
  • deodorant
  • stationery
  • other new and non-perishable goods.

Please bring any items or, if you wish to make your own, any filled and wrapped shoeboxes to the CES reception before 15 November.

Many thanks for your support with this. To find out more, email the CES team at careerhelp@kent.ac.uk.

Staff Webchat: Update on KentVision on Tuesday 9 November

Chaired by Professor Richard Reece, this Staff Webchat on Tuesday 9 November will update on the work actively underway to improve the current situation with our student records system, KentVision.

Supported by the new Project Manager Martin Carvey and the KV Project Board, project priorities include re-designing KV Service Desk to better manage emerging issues; and increasing the size of the KV Project delivery team to ensure the planning, testing and delivery cycles are completed fully, including full engagement and consultation with relevant stakeholders. This will avoid issues impacting staff and students. Some benefits of these changes should start to be realised from December onwards.

Alongside Richard and Martin, the panel will include Anthony Brenton, Lead Business Analyst; Paul Sales, IT Trainer; James McCrea, Head of Enterprise Systems; Anita Jackson, Director of Strategic Planning & Performance; Kyra Harwood-Lucas, Head of Student Administration; and John Crook, Director of Operations in the Division of Computing, Engineering & Mathematical Sciences.

The session will take place on Teams on Tuesday 9 November from 13.00-15.00, including time for questions. You can sign up now, and ask your questions in advance, via this link. A calendar invite will be sent to all attendees by Monday, 8 November, with further information of how to join us.

covid test kit

Covid-19: Working together to keep each other safe

As I am sure you are aware, recent weeks have seen a national rise in the number of Covid cases in the UK. While we do not currently have any major concerns locally, this is an important reminder to all of us that, unfortunately, Covid has not gone away, and we all need to continue to keep safety at the front of our minds, especially while on our campuses.

Face coverings and indoor spaces

We strongly encourage and recommend that you wear face coverings in crowded indoor spaces, including teaching and study spaces or while standing in queues. Face coverings are available free of charge at all student reception desks – wearing one can really help keep each other safe.

All of our rooms on campus have been assessed and adapted where necessary to meet Government ventilation guidelines. If you are meeting up with friends, then try to do this outside if you can – avoiding busy indoor spaces is a big part of stopping the spread.

Testing, reporting and vaccinations

Everyone coming onto campus should continue to take a Covid lateral flow test twice a week. You can get walk-in tests or pick up take-home kits from the Old Bank on our Canterbury campus or the Old Sports Hall at Medway, or order them online.

It also really helps us if you report the results of your tests to the NHS whenever you take them, whether they are positive or negative – instructions on how to do this should come with the testing kit itself. If you do have symptoms or test positive, you must self-isolate and get a PCR test as quickly as possible. Let us know that you are isolating so we can make sure you get the support you need – if your PCR test is positive, you will need to self-isolate for 10 days from when your symptoms started.

Lastly, vaccinations continue to be key to minimising the impact of Covid –  if you haven’t already, we strongly recommend getting two jabs if you can. Watch out for the Government’s Grab a Jab campaign for local walk-in centres.

Keeping going

I have been hugely impressed by the way all of you have worked together to keep each other safe as you have come back onto campus, and am really pleased that we have managed to keep infection numbers low to date. All of us have a part to play in continuing to keep our campuses safely open, so let’s continue to be careful in crowded indoor spaces, taking regular tests and getting vaccinated if you can.

With all good wishes,

Richard

Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Education and Student Experience

Covid-19: Working together to keep each other safe

From Professor Richard Reece, Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Education and Student Experience As I am sure you are aware, recent weeks have seen a national rise in the number of Covid cases in the UK. While we do not currently have any major concerns locally, this is an important reminder to all of us that, unfortunately, Covid has not gone away and we all need to continue to keep safety at the front of our minds, especially while on our campuses.

Face coverings and ventilation

We strongly encourage and recommend that people wear face coverings in crowded indoor spaces. Wearing a face covering can help keep each other safe, particularly in teaching and study spaces or while standing in queues. Face coverings are available free of charge at all student reception desks. Being outdoors or in well-ventilated spaces also helps reduce transmission. All of our rooms on campus have been assessed and adapted where necessary to meet Government ventilation guidelines. Keeping a window open helps support this – we should also all keep to a ‘virtual first’ approach to staff meetings to reduce the number of gatherings. Testing, reporting and vaccinations Everyone coming onto campus should continue to take a Covid lateral flow test twice a week. You can get walk-in tests or pick up take-home kits from the Old Bank on our Canterbury campus or the Old Sports Hall at Medway, or order them online. Reporting is also critical to supporting the national effort to counter Covid. Please remember to report your LFT test results to the NHS whether they are positive or negative – instructions on how to do this should come with the testing kit itself. If you have symptoms or if you do test positive, you must self-isolate for 10 days from the day your symptoms started and get a PCR test as quickly as possible. If your PCR test is positive, please let your line manager know and also email covidsupport@kent.ac.uk Lastly, vaccinations are also a key part of supporting national efforts against Covid, so if you qualify for a booster jab then you are strongly encouraged to get one if you can.

Keeping going

The start of term was a significant adjustment for all of us with the return of students and large number of staff to campus. I have been hugely impressed by the way all of us have responded and am pleased that to date we have managed to work together to keep infections low so far. All of us have a part to play in continuing to keep our campuses safely open – by being careful in crowded indoor spaces, taking regular tests and getting vaccinated if you can. I am also writing to students this week to remind them of what we all need to do to keep each other safe and will provide a further update if there any Government announcements that affect our response in the coming weeks. Richard Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Education and Student Experience

University of Kent Players are back with readthrough events in November

The University of Kent Players are extremely excited to be back with social readthrough events throughout November. We’ll be providing both in-person and virtual sessions to get together and get theatrical!

Our readthroughs are an excellent opportunity to meet up with fellow actors and theatre enthusiasts, and make new friends from across the University. You don’t need any previous experience to get involved; just be welcoming, friendly and supportive of your peers!

What are we reading?

Relative Values | Noël Coward

11th November 2021 | 12.30 – 13.30 | KENSR11 (Kennedy Building)

This comedy of manners, set in East Kent, follows an eventful dinner at the grand residence of Marshwood House. When the Countess’ son invites his fiancé, American actress Miranda Frayle, his mother is by no means pleased…

And Then There Were None | Agatha Christie

16th November 2021 | 17.30 – 18:30 | KENSR11 (Kennedy Building)

Eight disparate guests arrive at an isolated mansion located on an island off the coast of Devon tended by two staff but no host. A recording accuses all ten people of past crimes that went unpunished by the law. Soon they start dying one at a time, and the remaining guests deduce that the murderer is one of their own.

Frankenstein | Mary Shelly, Tim Shelly

25th November 2021 | 17.30 – 18.30 | Microsoft Teams (virtual)

No one can shake free the dark secret that terrifies Victor: not his mother, nor his fiancée, nor his best friend. Even the pleading of a gypsy girl accused of murdering Victor’s younger brother falls on deaf ears, for Victor has brought into being a creature made from pieces of the dead.

How to get involved

If you would like to get involved or have an interest in acting, directing, technical directing or anything theatrical get in touch with us on unikentplayers@kent.ac.uk

You can also follow us on social media for regular updates and events!

Instagram: @unikentplayers

Facebook: /unikentplayers

Twitter: @unikentplayers

University Challenge logo

University Challenge Trials

Do you fancy yourself a brainbox? Try out for Kent’s University Challenge team and prove it in front of the nation!

Students of all ages, genders and backgrounds are encouraged to attend either of the two trials being held via Teams in the coming weeks. Come along on Friday 5 November or Tuesday 9 November at 15.00 for the first round of trials, where the very best quizzers will be chosen to go on to the second buzzer-quiz round.

If you’re interested, join one of the Facebook events: https://fb.me/e/1WHROobED or here: https://fb.me/e/1RXR0mxKM

All are welcome, whether undergraduate or postgraduate, and whether at Medway, Canterbury, Brussels, Paris, or any other campus. Come by!

Careers in accounting, banking, finance and fintech

Careers in Accounting, Banking, Finance and Fintech Week, 1-5 November

Join us for the Careers and Employability Service’s Careers in Accounting, Banking, Finance and Fintech Week, 1-5 November 2021.

Starting on 1 November, the Careers and Employability Service will be hosting its first online Careers in Accounting, Banking, Finance and Fintech Week. This week-long programme is open to all students interested in finding out more about working in these sectors.

Throughout the week, we will be joined by a range of Kent alumni and employers, including Santander, Investment20/20, and Moore Kingston Smith. Events will include: workshops on networking and selection tests; insight talks from employers; presentations on how to succeed in landing graduate roles and internships; and an alumni panel discussion of equality and diversity within these industries.

All events will be virtual and hosted on either MS Teams or Zoom.

You can also earn 10 Employability Points by attending each event, which can be redeemed later in the year for exclusive rewards.

To see the full schedule of events, please visit our website. You can book your place for each event now on TARGETconnect.

Albena Azmanova receives Michael Harrington Book Award

Congratulations to Dr Albena Azmanova, in our Brussels School of International Studies (BSIS), on receiving the Michael Harrington Book Award.

The annual award, from the American Political Science Association (APSA), recognises ‘an outstanding book that demonstrates how scholarship can be used in the struggle for a better world’.

Albena’s book, Capitalism on Edge: How Fighting Precarity Can Achieve Radical Change Without Crisis or Utopia, was published by Columbia University Press in 2020.

Capitalism on Edge analyses the mutation of neoliberal capitalism into a more malignant social form Albena terms “precarity capitalism.” Drawing on history, political theory and political economy to reveal the insecurity afflicting a majority of the population under precarity capitalism, Albena provides fresh approaches to thought about radical change in which capitalism is overcome or subverted, rather than stabilized or overthrown.

Albena, Reader of Political and Social Thought at BSIS, comments: ‘This award is precious to me as it marks a critical moment in a journey that began more than 30 years ago when, as a student at Sofia University in Bulgaria, I became involved with the dissident movement against the communist dictatorship. That experience influenced my writing and led me to pursue lines of inquiry that challenge the entrenched views of the day. Receiving the award is also an inspiration to live to its terms of using scholarship in the struggle for a better world.’

Find out more about the Michael Harrington Book Award on the APSA webpages. For more information on the Capitalism on Edge book, see the Columbia University Press website.

presenting to students

Academic and Research Staff Promotions Round 2021-22

The 2021-22 application round for members of our academic and research staff to apply for promotion is now open.

All applications must be made via DocuSign by 12 noon on Monday 6 December.

Guidance, documentation and application forms for candidates can be found under on the HR webpages.

You will also find  guidance and template forms for the Divisional Promotions Panels, promotions committees etc within the Promotions: Academic and Research Staff section of the HR webpages.

Guidance on Mitigating Circumstances, and an accompanying template form, is available in the Staff Information/Policies section.