Monthly Archives: February 2023

bOing! Family Festival: Your chance to reach thousands of families in our local community

bOing! Family Festival is the University’s biggest community engagement event with over 10,000 people visiting the campus over the August bank holiday weekend each year. The festival is produced by the University’s Institute of Cultural & Creative Industries and welcomes both national and international artists making excellent work for children and families. Dates for this year are 26 & 27 August 2023. See more about bOing on the website.

Showcase your work

The festival is an opportunity to showcase the University’s research, innovation and engagement to a public audience. Previously the festival programme has featured forensic crime scene workshops and liquid nitrogen demonstrations by the Division of Natural Sciences, an interactive and participatory art & design exhibition by the Future Human signature research theme, virtual reality showcases by Engineering & Digital Arts and various physical workshops run by Kent Sport.

We would love to expand this offer and would welcome thoughts, ideas and pitches from academics, divisions, schools, departments, signature research themes and professional services about what you might want to bring to bOing 2023.

bOing is a family festival and attended by all ages, but we particularly look for activities which appeal to or can be suitable for children under 12.

If you have an idea you would like to pitch to be part of bOing! 2023, please email by 31 March, detailing:

  • A description of your event/activity
  • Who would run the activity
  • Age suitability and capacity
  • What kind of space and any resources/equipment you would require

‘When out one day;’ an exploration of portraiture in new exhibition in Colyer-Fergusson

The latest art exhibition in the gallery space in the Colyer-Fergusson Building features an exploration of the art of the portrait by Canterbury-based artist, Adam De Ville.

A series of ten striking paintings reflects Adam’s interest in exploring the human condition, brought vividly to the canvas in an array of arresting paintings that pushes through the space between viewer and subject, looking to capture the essence of the moment.

The display is free to view during the building’s opening hours; there is wheelchair access, and the exhibition is on until May. Read more about the exhibition on the Music blog.

Interested in inspiring others to enjoy Tennis?

We are excited to be hosting an LTA Level 1 Tennis Assistant coaching qualification course at the Kent Indoor Tennis and Events Arena on Sunday 26 March and Sunday 4 June.

The LTA Level 1 course is ideal for tennis parents, keen players, and anyone considering a career change into sports coaching or looking to get started in tennis coaching.

There are five levels of tennis coaching in this country with the LTA and Level 1 is just the beginning, focusing mainly on assisting a qualified coach to work with children. Level 2 allows you to lead group lessons unsupervised, perhaps going into local schools. Levels 3 to 5 allow you to deliver all types of group and individual lessons with more attention to detail the higher up you go.

This is an ideal opportunity to work alongside our Tennis Development Manager and LTA Level 5 coach, Nick Skelton, as we grow our tennis programme at the University of Kent. It’s an exciting time to get involved!

The two-day course, based on the Canterbury campus, runs from 9am to 5pm both days and costs just £275. You can find more details and book onto the course on the Virtus Leisure Management website. Or to discuss the course further contact Nick at

Egyptians: Come see a play last performed in 463 BC

Well sort of. The original play by Aeschylus has been lost bar one remining word. But it has been brought back to life by Foreign Office, the acclaimed team behind The Suppliant Women (Gulbenkian 2021), with help from experts and academics from across the globe, including some at Kent.

Egyptians will be performed between Wednesday 22 and Saturday 25 Feb at 19.30, with matinees at 14.00 on Thursday and Saturday. Tickets are £15 with a £5 student rate. Tickets can be bought from the Gulbenkian website.

As in ancient Greece, the performance uses professional actors and a community chorus – in this case of young men, including local residents and students from Kent.

It is a powerful story, with themes of migration, belonging and consent that remain vital today. The Greeks combined words, music and movement to dramatic effect, reflecting the conflict and tension of the story itself.

Set in a city destroyed by war, the victorious Egyptians demand to marry the fifty daughters of Danaos. But, strange omens, a grieving widow and a mysterious priestess — these are bleak portents for a mass wedding. As the men and women square up to their wedding night, who will finally prevail?

A panel discussion will follow the performance on Saturday 25 Feb, 14.00, chaired by Prof. David Wiles (Emeritus Professor of Drama at Exeter University) and including Egyptians director Ramin Gray alongside experts in Greek drama from the University of Kent (Dr. Rosie Wyles and Dr. Angeliki Varakis) and from the University of Oxford (Prof. Oliver Taplin, also production dramaturg).

And you can eat like a Greek! To celebrate Egyptians Gulbenkian Cafe is offering delicious Greek specials alongside our Showtime Menu every evening from 22 – 25 Feb.

Students smiling in seminar with laptops

Did you come to Kent via Clearing? Would you be willing to share your experience?

The University is looking to create new content with students who came to Kent via Clearing. This can be video content, written profiles or social posts for use on Kent’s channels.

If you came to Kent through Clearing and would like to tell your story, to help others in a similar position this year, then please contact Sam Charman – Digital Content Officer at for more information.

Students will be able to earn credit on their KentOne card for taking part.

Excel for all artwork

Looking to improve your Excel skills?

Apply for 1 of 5,000 places on ‘Santander Scholarships Skills: Excel for All’, a FREE, flexible, online programme delivered by Udemy.

You can choose either Complete or Advanced Excel – which, once completed, will help you to become more confident in one of the most widely used professional tools.

Applications close 16 May 2023, apply today!

#NeverStopLearning #Excelforall


Events roundup 20-26 February

Here’s a roundup of what’s on this week, including more LGBT+ History Month events, talks and workshops you can join and of course some pancakes for Pancake Day!

Industrial action update: All UCU strike days this week (and next week) have been postponed, meaning your lectures and classes for the next fortnight will go ahead as planned.

Tuesday: Pancake Day and LGBTQ+ events

Tuesday is Pancake Day and you can find lots of pancake options from our catering outlets including the Gulbenkian Café, Mungo’s and Dolce Vita. Or if you feel like making your own, you can join the Keynes Residential Life Assistants for their Pancake Party in Dolce Vita.

Make your own pronoun badge at The Hub or join this online session about how to find LGBTQ+ inclusive employers when applying for jobs and placements.

Wednesday: Postgrad Open Event, managing stress and anxiety workshop, Turkey-Syria support drop in and Medway Talks

Considering postgrad study? Book a place at our Postgraduate Open Event in Sibson on Wednesday evening to find out more about our PG courses and exclusive scholarships and funding for Kent grads.

If you need some better ways to manage stress, consider joining this practical online workshop for managing stress and anxiety. Find out how mindfulness practice can give us tools to build our resilience in the face of study, work and life challenge.

If you’ve been affected by the Turkey-Syria earthquake and would like a space to talk about how you are feeling, please come along to Locke Building 13:00-14:00 where Student Support and Wellbeing Advisers, College and Community Life Officers and Kent Union staff will be there to talk to you and offer support.

The Medway Talks open lecture series continues with ‘Mathematics, Memetics and Artificial Intelligence: An exploration through performance’ by Dr Neil Saunders from University of Greenwich.

Thursday: Heartstopper Marathon (Medway) and effective job applications

You can binge watch the entire series of Heartstopper on Thursday at the Hub (or join for however long you want!) as part of LGBT+ History Month.

Build your confidence by attending this online session all about job applications. Learn about different application processes and how to effectively use job descriptions and person specifications to make successful applications.

Friday: Zine making workshop

Come and explore zines from the visiting Queer Zine Library – a mobile library celebrating LGBTQ+ self-publishing. Create your own zine or just browse and discuss zines.

See more student events.


See more student opportunities

Take your ambition further. Discover how at our postgraduate open event.

Postgraduate Open Event, 22 Feb 

Are you considering to stay on for a Master’s? Come along to our Postgraduate Open Event on 22 February at the Sibson building, Canterbury Campus.  

Find out more about:  

Speak to our friendly academic and support staff, as well as our own undergrad to postgrad students. See if postgraduate study may be an option for you.  

Book your place now.

University Teaching Prizes 2023

Each year, the University awards a number of prizes to individual staff or teams for outstanding work in teaching and/or learning support. For 2023, colleagues are encouraged to submitted applications which address three criteria:

  • Excellence in Teaching or Supporting Learning
  • Dissemination and Influence
  • Above and Beyond Expectations of Normal Operation.

Prizes will be at the University level, and will include both Academic and Learning Support categories. Individuals or teams can apply from all divisions and professional services teams.

The panel will be chaired by Professor Richard Reece (DVC Education & Student Experience) and will meet in April 2023. Prizes will be awarded at the end of the Learning and Teaching Conference in June 2023.

The call for applications for the 2023 prizes is now open. The closing date for applications is Thursday 6 April 2023. Please fill out the application form.

What is Sanctuary? Upcoming seminars

This year the University of Kent is applying for University of Sanctuary status. As part of the City of Sanctuary movement, the Universities of Sanctuary network aims to ‘make Higher Education institutions places of safety, solidarity and empowerment for people seeking sanctuary’.

To help ensure that the University’s application process is properly reflective and self-critical, the Migration and Movement SRT is continuing its series of seminars that address the question ‘What is Sanctuary?’

Speakers from a range of disciplines, career stages and backgrounds consider what sanctuary means and entails. Contributions are a mix of academic talks and reflections on lived experience.

All sessions are online. Everybody is invited to join the conversation.

What Is Sanctuary 3, 16.00-17.00, Wednesday 8 March 

Rachel Larkin, Lecturer in Social Work (SSPSSR) 

Sanctuary: A place or a feeling? This presentation will explore sanctuary as a relational affective space, drawing on data from research with migrant young women in the UK. Using psycho-social and affect theory, it will consider the role of emotion in both the attempt to create sanctuary and the experience of seeking it.

Matthew Whittle, Lecturer in Postcolonial Literature (School of English) 

In this talk I’ll be looking at Walton Ford’s painting ‘Sanctuary’ (1998) as a jumping off point to discuss the relationship between forced migration and colonialism. The context of the painting is the Congo region and the privileging of eco-tourism over human life. It invites a contrast between forms of sanctuary relating to the forced movement and precarity of animals and humans in (neo)colonial contexts.

Join Zoom meeting:
Topic: What Is Sanctuary 3
Time: Mar 8, 2023 04:00 PM London 
Meeting ID: 831 8572 4134
Passcode: 657680 

What Is Sanctuary 4, 16.00-17.00, Wednesday 29 March 

David Roberts, Reader in Biodiversity Conservation (School of Anthropology and Conservation) 

What is a refuge in conservation and ecology?During the process of extinction, the last individual of a species has to have occurred at a specific location at a specific time. This, however, does not mean the location contributed significantly to its persistence (i.e. that it was a refuge) as its persistence could merely be the result of chance, that this individual at this location was the last of its kind. Understanding why populations persist in the face of adversity is fundamental to conservation and ecology. There are numerous definitions of what constitutes a refuge, with most incorporating some form of spatial and temporal isolation from the cause of, or resistance to, disturbance. However, use of the term refuge is often imprecise, has been used interchangeably with other terms such as relic population and biogeographic nodes, and is often based on unsubstantiated statements. Here we look how the term refuge is applied in ecology and its application to some famous extinctions and environmental events.

Jonathan Rock Rokem, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography (School of Anthropology and Conservation) 

Mounting violent borders and rising inequalities bring new global challenges and opportunities facing the enablement of migrant arrival and settlement. This talk brings to light differences in migrant access to public urban resources across the socio-economic and ethnic profile of three major cities. Comparing Stockholm, Berlin and London, the research investigates spatial inequality and urban segregation, and shows how this can affect migrant mobility and accessibly to public urban resources. Taken together, this is argued to have an impact on newly arriving people’s participation in diverse urban societies.

Fateh Shaban, Academic Fellow in Human Geography (School of Anthropology and Conservation) 

The Syrian civil war, which began with a revolution in 2011, has led to a vacuum in higher education in north-western Syria. Some universities in the area have continued to provide tertiary education, whilst others have emerged since. However, higher education in northern Syria faces significant challenges due to the war and the conditions it has generated, most notably the lack of infrastructure, neglect by international support, the interference of armed forces, and other problems associated with war conditions. This paper will consider the urgent needs faced by the higher education sector in north-western Syria, the most pressing of which are financial support, unification of the sector, attaining accreditation, and building relationships at the international level.

Join Zoom Meeting:
Topic: What is Sanctuary 4
Time: Mar 29, 2023 04:00 PM London
Meeting ID: 858 9353 1278
Passcode: 953000  

What Is Sanctuary 5, 16.00-17.00, Wednesday 5 April 

Sian Lewis, Senior Lecturer in Law (Kent Law School)  

This talk will consider forms of sanctuary provided by religious groups in ancient times and the significance or otherwise of that to present day ideas of sanctuary. Building on this, the talk will address the cities of sanctuary movement in the USA, in particular the refusal to implement (repressive) federal immigration laws.

Hayley Gibson, Lecturer in Law (Kent Law School) 

Constituting Sanctuary: Theorising law and refusal. Aside from its connotations of mercy and kindness, the phenomenon of sanctuary often elicits a jurisprudential discourse concerning the conflict between two normative or legal regimes: one claims sanctuary from the reach of the law; and at the same time there is some force, uniquely capable of providing a space in which the law may be refused, which runs contrary to the monopoly on force that is definitive of sovereignty and, by extension, State law. This paper aims to think through the jurisprudential implications of this unique territory-within-State-territory, in which law is not suspended, but refused. It will draw on the work of Jacques Ranciere in conceptualising the territory of sanctuary as an aesthetic realm in which the ‘part of no part’ is made manifest; and in doing so, it shall consider what the significance of this unique space might be for the concepts of human rights and citizenship. 

Reda Mahajar, Doctoral Researcher in International Relations (Brussels School of International Relations) 

In this talk, I will illustrate my experience as a refugee pursuing my lifelong dream of a PhD research project against all the odds of war, danger and displacement in Syria and Lebanon. Born and raised as a refugee in Syria, I became a refugee again in Lebanon from 2013 to 2018. However, my life changed when I came to the Brussels School of International Studies, University of Kent, in Sept 2018.

Join zoom meeting:
Topic: What is Sanctuary 5
Time: Apr 5, 2023 04:00 PM London
Meeting ID: 893 1719 8474
Passcode: 680916