Author Archives: Annabel Chislett

Reminder of Campus Shuttle changes and benefits of service

We hope you are enjoying the changes to the Campus Shuttle. The changes were made based on results from the shuttle survey, completed by over 450 students and staff. Summary of the changes:

  • Passengers can now board the Campus Shuttle at Liberty Quays for travel to Pembroke campus and the Dockyard (Western Avenue)
  • To allow for passenger boarding time without losing the hourly service, the shuttle now only stops once on the Canterbury campus, at Keynes bus stop
  • The service no longer stops at Darwin bus stop
  • The on-the-hour timetable continues with some changes to peak travel times to improve reliability
  • Change of route: Keynes- Liberty Quays- Dockyard (Western Avenue)- Pembroke- Dockyard (Western Avenue)- Liberty Quays- Keynes
  • The new booking system allows you to book a seat on the day
  • There are two new, larger Campus Shuttle vehicles (53 and 34 seaters) wrapped with a University of Kent design

There are other benefits of the service, the Campus Shuttle:

  • is a free, regular service
  • runs on weekdays and weekends
  • has on-board Wi-Fi
  • has on-board USB charging points
  • new booking system is mobile-friendly

If you would like to provide feedback on the Campus Shuttle please contact

Kent and the Vatican to host atheism conference

An event co-hosted by the University of Kent’s ‘Understanding Unbelief’ project, the Pontifical Council for Culture (the Vatican department responsible for dialogue with non-believers), and the Nonreligion and Secularity Research Network, will explore ground-breaking new research advancing the scientific understanding of atheism and nonreligion.

Taking place at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome from 28-30 May 2019, the ‘Cultures of Unbelief’ conference presents findings from the multidisciplinary research programme, aiming to map the nature and diversity of ‘unbelief’ across the world.

Gordon Lynch, Michael Ramsey Professor of Modern Theology for the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Kent, said: ‘The growth of different forms of non-religion has been a significant development in many societies across the world in recent decades. This conference, drawing together findings from the most substantial international programme of research in this field, promises to be a genuinely landmark event in taking forward both our understanding of the varieties of non-religion and the social implications of these.’

Dr Lois Lee, Senior Research Fellow in Religious Studies in SECL, is Principal Investigator for Understanding Unbelief. The project, which is supported by a £2.3 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation is co-led by psychologist Dr Miguel Farias (Coventry University), anthropologist Dr Jonathan Lanman (Queen’s University Belfast), and sociologist Professor Stephen Bullivant (St Mary’s University).

Recent popes have repeatedly voiced a desire for greater understanding between ‘those to whom religion is something foreign, to whom God is unknown’ as Pope Benedict XVI put it in 2009 when he announced his new initiative for Christian-atheist dialogue known as the Court of Gentiles. More recently, Pope Francis has written of ‘a sincere and rigorous dialogue’ with nonbelievers as being ‘nothing other than positive, not only for us individually but also for the society in which we live’.

The current collaboration comes at a time when rates of unbelief and non-religion appear to be rapidly rising across the world, with potentially significant social, cultural, and political implications. New figures published last year by Understanding Unbelief researcher Stephen Bullivant revealed that 70% of UK 18-29 year-olds identify as having ‘no religion’.


Latest Brexit information

As part of the University’s preparations for Brexit, a suite of webpages is now available for current and prospective students, staff and researchers.

Whilst we are still unclear of the UK’s position regarding its exit from the EU, we aim to continue to provide the latest support and guidance to our students and staff. These pages will be updated with the latest information as more details become available.

Also included are examples of how the University is informing the Brexit debate through its series of academic expert comments and guest lectures amongst other activity.

The pages include contributions from our Academic Division, Human Resources, Research Services and Corporate Communications teams. Kent Union has also provided additional advice for EU students.

Study Plus

Study Plus courses

Have you signed up for a FREE Study Plus workshop yet?

KE051 ‘Writing and Directing Feature Length Fiction for Cinema: “The Selfish Giant”, a case study’ is an interactive workshop, which will give you an introduction to writing and directing a film from initial idea through to completion and exhibition.

If you’re thinking of signing up for a language as a wild module, or just want to have a go at learning a new language, choose from four taster sessions, all suitable for complete beginners:

Arabic Taster session- (KE181)

Japanese Taster session (KE182)

Mandarin Taster session (KE183)

Russian Taster session (KE184)

You’ll also find a range of woodland craft workshops, such as Coppicing, and Brash Fence Building (KE060, KE061, KE072, KE160, KE161)

Don’t miss out: Book your place via the Workshops page in SDS.

For more information and to see all of the courses on offer, please visit the Study Plus website.

FA People’s Cup at the University of Kent

Kent Sport are proud to be hosting the FA People’s Cup on Thursday 14 February at the Pavilion from 18.00-22.00 .The FA People’s Cup is a free five-a-side knockout competition that gives everyone of any ability the chance to play in their version of the FA Cup. University of Kent students can enter online:

UoK male:
UoK Female:

Entry requirements:

• No British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) Football or Futsal players registered for the 2018/19 season are permitted to enter the competition in the University Male category

• Two BUCS Football or Futsal players are permitted per team in the University Female category

• Attend university of round 1 host

• No mixed gender teams

To find out more about the FA People’s Cup visit BBC Inspired

LGBT History Month 2019

Throughout February we will be observing LGBTQ+ history, and the history of gay rights and related civil rights movement.

The University of Kent, LGBT Staff Network, Kent Union, LGBT Student Network and the Gulbenkian Theatre have brought together a range of events throughout February to celebrate and commemorate LGBTQ+ individuals and history.

Find the full programme of month-long events here.

CELTA courses

Qualify to teach English or improve your own English

The Centre for English and World Languages runs an intensive CELTA training course starting on 17 June.  CELTA (Cambridge Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) is an internationally recognised qualification.

If English is not your first language and you’d like to improve, you can sign up for FREE classes, which will be taught by our CELTA trainee teachers.

Find out more about the CELTA course and the free English classes.

Helen Brooks in conversation with Andrew Gordon-Watkins

The School of Arts is delighted to present Behind the Scenes: In Conversation with Andrew Gordon-Watkins on Thursday 7 February 2019 at 16.00 in the Aphra Theatre.

Andrew Gordon-Watkins has worked in musical theatre for over 15 years and is currently touring with Saturday Night Fever. Andrew’s career began with a Drama degree at the University of Exeter, after which he trained at Central School of Speech and Drama. Since then he has worked in London’s West End theatre district, where he was in Young Frankenstein at the Garrick Theatre in 2018, as well as internationally. Andrew’s musical credits include Kiss Me KateThe ProducersPriscilla Queen of the DesertLa Cage Aux FollesLegally BlondeWe Will Rock YouEvitaRocky Horror Picture ShowHoudini the MusicalTreasure Island and the Pirates of the CaribbeanHello DollyAnnieThe Wild PartyFax of Life, and Marilyn the Musical.

Andrew will be talking with Dr Helen Brooks, Reader in Theatre and Cultural History in the School of Arts, about his love of musical theatre, the development of his career, and the highs and lows of working in the industry.

The event is free to attend, and is a must for anyone interested in musical theatre, or with an interest in working in theatre and the creative arts.

For more details, please see the events page.

To register for a free ticket, please follow this link:


New recruitment system to replace i-Grasp

As part of the Staff Connect Phase 2 project, the current staff recruitment system, i-Grasp, will be replaced and a new system will go live on 6 March 2019.

Recruiting managers may wish to plan any job campaigns around this launch date. i-Grasp can be used until the new system launch date as long as the closing date for applications is no later than Thursday 28 March 2019. You will need to speak to your resourcing contact if you have an urgent campaign that needs to be advertised before 6 March and you need the closing date to be later than the end of March.

The aim of the second phase of Staff Connect is to streamline our HR processes and provide employees and managers with a one-stop-shop for most HR-related activity. This has seen the recent introduction on training, appraisals (RPD), annual leave and absence management being added to the system.

Although this is part of the Staff Connect project, a separate software solution called Stonefish will replace i-Grasp. Stonefish is more tailored to the HE sector and is used by over 35 universities in the UK and presents a slicker user interface which is more intuitive to use than the current system.

There are a number of benefits to the system.

– Applicants will find the registration and application process easier than i-Grasp.

– Recruiting managers will no longer need to be complete manual forms. Stonefish will be the single source of information about recruitment and duplication of data entry will be eliminated. An improved shortlisting process will be conducted online along with the ability to have anonymous shortlisting where appropriate (the latter will support the University’s Diversity & Inclusion and Athena SWAN commitments).

Find out more here.

Medway Student Support Bursary 2019

The Universities at Medway have been awarded a further significant donation to The Medway Student Support Bursary.  This donation will provide bursaries to home (UK/EU) students from Canterbury Christ Church University, University of Greenwich and the University of Kent each year.  This is an excellent opportunity to apply for additional funding and the selected recipients will receive a bursary of £1,250 (Spring applications).

Applying for this bursary is easy. Check the eligibility criteria below, if you meet the requirements, all you need to do is complete the attached application form and return it along with the required evidence by the deadline. The Selection Criteria and Important Notes below will provide guidance on this.

The deadline to apply by is 12 noon on 8 February 2019 (Spring Term applications)

In order to be eligible to apply for The Medway Student Support Bursary you must:

  • be a home student (UK/EU)
  • be currently registered full or part-time on an undergraduate degree programme based at the Medway Campus
  • demonstrate a household income of £42,875 or less

Your application will be considered on the basis of your fulfilment of the eligibility criteria and the 350-500 word statement sections demonstrating:

  • why you are in need of financial support and what has changed in your financial circumstances since embarking on the programme
  • what the award will be used for (See important note below)
  • information about you and your aims and aspirations for the future
  • You may want to include additional information relating to volunteering or ambassadorial work that you have done or are planning to do within the local community e.g. voluntary work, paid work, sports contributions, community activity organisations such as the Scouts etc.)

Important notes:

  • awards will not fund general (exceptional travel may be considered) programme travelling expenses or new equipment such as laptops or phones
  • awards are intended for the student‘s use only and not for family support
  • The first payment will only be made upon submission of a thank you letter to the donors outlining how the Bursary will be used to support the Bursary recipient.
  • The second payment will only be made upon submission of a report outlining how the Bursary has supported the Bursary recipient and how this support has impacted on their academic studies.
  • successful recipients will be able to hold other awards whilst in receipt of the Medway Student Support Bursary such as the NSP and may reapply for a further bursary in subsequent years
  • successful recipients will be required to sign a Bursary Agreement which sets out the conditions of the bursary award
  • payment of the bursary will be suspended immediately, and any payments may be required to be returned, if an awardee:

(i)            ceases to hold an offer of a place at any of the Universities,

(ii)           ceases to be a registered student at any of the Universities,

(iii)          becomes a debtor to any of the three Universities,

(iv)          is found to have made a misrepresentation or misleading or fraudulent statement in connection with his/her application

  • recipients are expected to remain in satisfactory academic standing
  • students out on a placement year are not eligible for that year, but may apply once academic studies are resumed
  • successful recipients will be required to write a report to the board detailing how the bursary has supported them and how this support has impacted on their academic studies.  The deadline for submission of the report by the Medway Student Support Bursary recipients is 24 May 2019 (Spring applications).
  • All applications confirmed as meeting the eligibility criteria will be taken forward. The bursary recipient(s) will be chosen by the Medway Student Support Bursary Board which will meet in early March (Spring applications) and all applicants will be advised of the outcome shortly afterwards.

The Medway Student Support Bursary application form is available for download as a Word document here.

Your completed application along with all required evidence can be scanned and emailed to us at or a paper application can be submitted to M2-13 (Medway Building 2nd Floor).

We look forward to receiving your application and remember, the deadline is 12 noon on the 8 February 2019 (Spring applications).