Author Archives: Aida Sharaf

Kent Talks- empowering and uplifting students

Miray Has, a third year Biomedical Science student, and her team were successful with being awarded a Community Scholarship for a new project aimed to empower and uplift students of the University of Kent – Kent Talks.

At Kent Talks, the objective is to help enrich students by gaining knowledge on diverse subject matters that can be easily overlooked. Whether you are an undergraduate or a postgraduate, a bold public speaker or a nervous speaker, Kent Talks will provide you with the necessary guidance and support to become an orator on stage.

There will be four events throughout the academic year with three speeches taking place at each event. The Kent Talks platform ensures every individual within the university has access to a framework where they can talk about an interest or expertise, identify problems or simply share personal experiences that they believe others will benefit from.

The first event will be held on Monday 11 November at the Gulbenkian Theatre from 17.00-18.00. This is a great opportunity to collaborate with your friends all around campus, meet like-minded people and deepen your educational and social values.

If you have ever felt strongly about an issue or topic and wanted to raise awareness, then this is the perfect opportunity for you. All you need is a thirst to overcome barriers and a passion to continuously self-evolve. The project members will be here to prepare and mentor you for your upcoming talk.

Learn more about Kent Talks online or email Miray Has for more information.

Re-thinking Europe

To mark the launch of the new ‘Postcolonial Europe Group’, there will be an all-day symposium on the 2nd of November 2019 at the University of Kent, with contributions from scholars, activists and artists from the UK, Netherlands, Denmark, Italy, and Malta.

At a time when Europe is being questioned culturally and politically, there is a need to re-think its significance. Adopting a postcolonial lens, this event will bring into the spotlight a different map of Europe that is not solely shaped by its colonial legacy but also by different dynamics of subalternity, conditions of un/belonging, cultural, economic and geographical displacement.

The event will bring disciplines and fields together to re-think critically and creatively the significance of Europe. It will focus particularly on a number of contested conjunctural spaces: from Europe’s Southern frontiers to its inner cities. The interventions will be followed by a round table discussion centred on the objectives of the network, and a talk by artist Agnese Purgatorio.

Speakers include:

Professor Lars Jensen (Roskilde University): ‘Writing Postcolonial Europe’

Professor Sandra Ponzanesi (Utrecht University): ‘Phantoms of Europe: Intellectual Legacies and Cultural Transitions in Postcolonial Europe’

Dr Norbert Bugeja (University of Malta): ‘The Edge(s) of Memoir in an Ageing Europe: Postcolonial Notes’

Professor Miguel Mellino (Università degli Studi di Napoli L’Orientale): ‘Policing The Refugee Crisis: Neoliberalism between Biopolitics and Necropolitics’

Dr Paula McCloskey (University of Derby) and Dr Sam Vardy (Sheffield Hallam University): ‘The Eile Project; a place, of their own’

Dr Maria Ridda (University of Kent): ‘Remaking Europe from its Lawless Frontiers’

Agnese Purgatorio (artist, Podbiesky Contemporary, Milan): ‘The Immobile Nomad’

Register here. The event is free but places are strictly limited and will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis.

Online interactive training module on how to identify and avoid plagiarism

Colleagues are invited to the Learning & Teaching Network session titled ‘Online interactive training module for students introducing academic integrity and how to identify and avoid plagiarism’ taking place on:

Date:  Wednesday 13 November

Time: 13.15-14.30

Location: Cornwallis North West Seminar Room 6

Presented by Chloe Courtenay, Senior Tutor, Centre for English and World Languages and Susan Driver, Faculty Learning Technologist

The aim of this project is to develop an online interactive Academic Integrity module to be hosted on the AI website on one platform for students and on another exclusively for staff.

The student module would include guidance about good academic practice and show examples of different types of plagiarism (e.g. copy paste, patchwork, collusion, unintentional, poor use of sources, poor paraphrasing etc.).

The staff module would include examples of different types of plagiarism but would also include interactive questions to identify what kind of poor academic practice is shown in the example. In this way it could function as a training module.

An interactive online module will also be more inclusive for both students and staff as it will comprise, audio-visual as well as written input. The aim is for the online module to be a modern, user-friendly, and visually appealing educational tool.

“In this session we will introduce the student version, show the different activities and explain how the module could be used.”

To confirm your attendance please complete the online booking form.

English Language and Academic Skills workshops

Is English not your first language?

We offer a FREE English language course for all Kent students.

English Language and Academic Skills (ELAS) helps you improve your English and gives you the chance to discuss your specific academic difficulties. Workshops include:

ED001 Essay Writing

ED002 Grammar

ED003 Presentation Skills

ED004 Listening and Note-Taking

ED008 Pronunciation

ED009 Good Academic Practice and Referencing

Individual Speaking Tutorials

Individual Writing Tutorials

You can sign up for spring term modules from Week 8.

The workshops are based at the Canterbury campus but Medway students are invited to join.

You can catch the free Campus Shuttle to Canterbury. Book a seat on the Campus Shuttle.

Find out more information about the free English language workshops.

Canterbury Horrorfest 2019

Horrorfest 2019 is the first of an annual Halloween tradition here in Canterbury. Setting the table for an All Hallows Eve feast for years to come. A festive carnival of ever-changing horrific tricks and treats.

To begin the tradition this year CSRfm are hosting the very first Horrorfest event: a comedy murder mystery radio production called “DeadAir”. It will be an interactive experience, with listeners being able to call, text and get involved through CSRfm’s social media to figure out the identity of the murderer as the show progresses.

The first scene is laid in CSR’s Studio Red as a few presenters attempt to put on a live Halloween special, only it all goes wrong when the first thing they see is Derek dead on their freshly hoovered studio floor. Follow them as they become ‘secret’ murder detectives and hopelessly and hilariously fail to keep the ever-growing number of deaths a secret from the authorities, all whilst not at all keeping calm and carrying on…

All main actors are current CSRfm presenters with featured guest roles by past show guests and a special interview with Dr. Michael Goodrum, Senior Lecturer of History and Superhero and Gothic Horror Specialist at Canterbury Christ Church University.

The show will air on CSRfm and 97.4fm on Halloween between 9am to 6pm.

Afterwards there will be a special creative hour after the show between 6pm and 7pm featuring local poets, spoken word artists and story tellers, such as: Sam Tate, Henry Maddicott, Alys Parsons, Thomas Cleary, Alex Brand, Claudia Volpe and Isabella Poretsis.

25 Year Lunch

The annual 25 Year Lunch, hosted by the Vice-Chancellor, was held in the Beagle Restaurant on Thursday, 17 October.

The lunch celebrates and recognises the contribution each staff member has made over the years at the University.  In recognition of their time at Kent invitees can choose to receive a gift (we work in partnership with Fenwicks) which will be presented to them by the Vice-Chancellor or, they can opt to have a donation made to a Charity of their choice.

Eight members of staff attended to celebrate and, although the gathering was smaller than usual, the Beagle Restaurant was the perfect venue and a thoroughly enjoyable time was held by all.

PhD Funding Success for Biosciences

New multi-million pound investment to support flagship Bioscience doctoral training centre at Kent

The School of Biosciences has been awarded a multi-million pound investment from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC, a part of UK Research and Innovation) to provide new PhD studentships as part of a South Coast Biosciences Doctoral Training Partnership (SoCoBio DTP). The flagship programme will generate a pipeline of highly skilled researchers by creating a supportive and interdisciplinary environment where students learn to innovate and add value to society.

Professor Colin Robinson, Head of School, Biosciences, University of Kent is quoted as saying;

“The University of Kent is excited to be part of the SoCoBio Team that has been awarded this prestigious BBSRC DTP. We look forward to ensuring that the students enrolled in this programme will benefit from the excellent academic and industrial expertise that exists across the consortium. This DTP represents a valuable investment in the future of scientific excellence in the UK”

The first students will start in September 2020 and the projects will be advertised soon. Watch this space for updates!


Ben Hutchinson on the controversial Nobel laureate Peter Handke

Ben Hutchinson, Professor of European Literature in the Department of Modern Languages and Academic Director of the Paris School of Arts and Culture, has published an article in the Times Literary Supplement titled ‘Peter Handke: entering the curious canon’, a consideration of the legacy of the controversial Nobel laureate.

Ben writes that the Austrian writer’s reputation had long preceded him, even before the Nobel committee’s decision to award him the 2019 prize for literature. He notes that “the decision has not so much polarized opinion – to use the customary cliché – as galvanized it: ‘dumbfounded by the selection’, the president of Pen America speaks for many when she concludes that ‘the literary community deserves better’. In 2019, the Nobel committee seems to have achieved something it very rarely does, namely to unite everyone in agreement”.

The crucial issue, however, is not Handke’s politics, but his poetics. Does his work matter? Ben asks whether Handke will continue to be read a century from now, or whether he will fall into obscurity like a number of Nobel laureates. “Framed this way, the question is not so much about Handke’s questionable political interventions – above all, his defence of Slobodan Milošević – as about his literary merit. Is he any good?”

Topology- a story of doughnuts, power lines and the London Underground

The School of Mathematics, Statistics and Actuarial Science are giving a public lecture open to all.

Topology is a new form of geometry that looks at things quite differently compared to the classical, Euclidean approach. The lecture will explore how this can be applied to the world today as well as how it can be used to solve problems that have been open for several thousand years.

When: Tuesday 19th November 2019, 18:00-19:00

Where: SIBLT1

Who: Dr Constanze Roitzheim, University of Kent

Tickets are free so just come along!

Alumna Dr Lucy Scott-Moncrieff awarded Lifetime Achievement Award

Kent Law School alumna Dr Lucy Scott-Moncrieff has been presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award  at the prestigious annual Law Society Excellence Awards for solicitors in England and Wales.

Dr Scott-Moncrieff, a former Law Society president, graduated with a degree in law from Kent in 1975. She is a former patron of the Kent Law Campaign (to raise funds for the Wigoder Law Building) and was made an Honorary Doctor of Laws at Kent in 2009.

As a solicitor specialising in mental health and human rights, Dr Scott-Moncrieff has been widely recognised for her contribution to society. She was named Mental Health Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year in 2005; won the Association of Women Solicitors’ award for best manager of a legal aid practice in 2011; was invited to attend the 2013 Women of the Year Lunch in October in recognition of her work with detained patients; and was awarded the CBE in January 2014 for her services to legal aid.

Earlier this year, in her contribution for Kent Law School’s commemorative 50th anniversary book, Dr Scott-Moncrieff said: ‘I was at Kent from 1972/5, and it changed my life. I learnt that the law could be used to challenge social injustice and give power to people who are often powerless, and that lawyers could be agents for change, rather than for conformity.’

Dr Scott-Moncrieff currently sits as the House of Lords Commissioner for Standards. Appointed in 2016, she is responsible for the independent and impartial investigation of alleged breaches of the House of Lords Code of Conduct. This includes investigating breaches of the rules on the House’s system of financial support for members. She is also the managing director of Scott-Moncrieff & Associates Ltd.