Author Archives: Hannah Brazier

person stretching leg

Staying active at uni

Exercise and staying active are important for both your physical and mental health. Here are our top tips for staying active at university:

 

 Join a sports club

Team Kent run more than 60 different clubs, with sports ranging from American Football to Ultimate Frisbee. The sports are represented at a range of levels, from recreational to competitive, so there is something for everyone!

View the full list of sports clubs

 

  • Get outdoors

There are lots of green spaces in Kent, so why not take advantage of them? Going for a jog or a walk outside is great for clearing your head after a long day of studying.

If you want to start running, parkrun is a weekly free timed 5km run, jog or walk every Saturday in parks and open spaces. The Canterbury parkrun starts at the Sports Pavilion on Parkwood Road, and the Medway parkrun takes place at Great Lines Heritage Park (Gillingham).

 

  • Join Kent Sport

Kent Sport has an extensive range of facilities, including a fitness suite, fitness and dance studio, sports halls, cricket nets, 3G football pitch, a brand new Indoor Tennis and Events Arena and many more. Members are able to choose from a large variety of fitness classes, such as Zumba, yoga and spinning.

Free Kent Sport Premium Plus membership is offered to:

 

  • Exercise with a friend

It can be daunting to exercise alone in a gym, or to join a sports club by yourself. Exercising with a friend will mean you’re less likely to get bored, and you can motivate each other by planning new and exciting workouts! On those days when you don’t feel like working out, having someone to keep you accountable will mean you’re more likely to stick to your exercise goals.

 

  • Cycle or walk to uni

Instead of taking the bus or driving, take advantage of the many cycle and footpaths around our campuses. Including exercise as part of your commute is a great way of staying active without attending a gym or an exercise class – and it’s good for the environment!

Find out more about walking and cycling at Kent

Drill Hall library

Support at Medway

This blog outlines the support on offer and how to get in contact.

First points of contact

The Colleges that make up the Canterbury and Medway campuses are made up of the friendly Colleges and Community Life Team, who are a first point of contact for any kind of assistance, advice and support. All Medway students are affiliated with Medway College.

You can also get in touch with your School if you have a query. Your School should be able to help you or point you in the right direction for further support.

Support with your studies

Our Student Learning and Advisory Service (SLAS) can help you with everything from perfecting your essay writing to learning how to reference properly.

Don’t forget your School is also there to help you with your studies and offer a range of study support.

Have you checked in with Student Support and Wellbeing?

If you have a disability, chronic condition, mental health condition, specific learning difficulty or autism, please contact Student Support and Wellbeing to see how they can help you make the most of your university journey.

We have a team of expert staff who can help you face the challenges of studying, socialising and living independently, whatever else you might be going through, whether it’s something you’re experiencing for the first time at University or have dealt with for a while.

There is also a free confidential counselling service which offers you a safe space to address issues concerning you and can help get thoughts, feelings, behaviour and perspective on life back in balance again.

Students’ Union

From money worries to housing issues, academic problems to visa support, your students’ union’s Student Advice Service is available to help through their free, impartial and confidential advice service.

Medical advice

You should register with a local doctor near to your accommodation in order to receive treatment under the National Health Service (NHS): Find your nearest NHS Surgery.

students sitting at table

Support at Canterbury

This blog outlines the support on offer and how to get in contact.

First points of contact

The Colleges that make up the Canterbury and Medway campuses are made up of the friendly Colleges and Community Life Team, who are a first point of contact for any kind of assistance, advice and support.

You can also get in touch with your School if you have a query. Your School should be able to help you or point you in the right direction for further support.

Support with your studies

Our Student Learning and Advisory Service (SLAS) can help you with everything from perfecting your essay writing to learning how to reference properly.

Don’t forget your School is also there to help you with your studies and offer a range of study support.

Have you checked in with Student Support and Wellbeing?

If you have a disability, chronic condition, mental health condition, specific learning difficulty or autism, please contact Student Support and Wellbeing to see how they can help you make the most of your university journey.

We have a team of expert staff who can help you face the challenges of studying, socialising and living independently, whatever else you might be going through, whether it’s something you’re experiencing for the first time at university or something you have dealt with for a while.

There is also a free confidential counselling service which offers you a safe space to address issues concerning you and can help get thoughts, feelings, behaviour and perspective on life back in balance again.

Kent Union

Kent Union are your Students’ Union at Canterbury. From money worries to housing issues, academic problems to visa support, Kent Union’s Student Advice Centre is available to help through their free, impartial and confidential advice service.

You can also get in touch with your Kent Union full-time officers who are each responsible for specific areas within the Union.

Medical advice

Kent has its own NHS general practice on campus called the University Medical Centre. There’s also an independent pharmacy next door, so you don’t have to go far when you’re feeling under the weather.

Our University Nursing Service is available 24/7 during term-time.

Students achieve GOLD

The Global Officers Leadership Development (GOLD) Programme has celebrated another successful year.

The programme, led by Kent’s Dean for Internationalisation Dr Anthony Manning, International Partnerships and International Programmes is a co-curricular venture which provides a framework of activities for globally minded undergraduate students at Kent to develop their leadership skills, global citizenship and cultural awareness.

Although the programme went online this year, participants took part in various workshops including Event Management, Talking Cultures, explored the concept of curriculum internationalisation and their own cultural intelligence (CQ).  They created a series of Web Hangouts that took place throughout the year, engaged in various virtual exchange opportunities with our university partners around the world including Hong Kong, Canada, the US and Europe, and represented Kent as student panel members at various internal and external conferences.

Leah Bird, Global Officer 2020-21, said, “The GOLD Programme has been a wonderful experience and his given me many opportunities that I had never considered before such as organising WebHangouts or participating in a global challenge with a Canadian university. The organisers make it an unforgettable experience and it has provided me with transferable skills and knowledge that I will apply in my post-university life.”

“This amazing group of #kentglobalofficers have led our internationalisation at home and have created and participated in so many cross-disciplinary and transnational activities; it is truly humbling and inspiring, especially given the challenges of the pandemic!” Dr Anthony Manning, Dean for Internationalisation

Would you like to become Kent’s next Global Officer, 2021-22?  Applications are now open (deadline 10 October 2021). For further information and to apply, please see: https://www.kent.ac.uk/global/engagement#gold

person using laptop

Jobshop has moved to TargetConnect

The Careers and Employability Service is pleased to announce Jobshop, the vacancy portal run by Kent Union, has moved to TargetConnect. TargetConnect is the vacancy platform used by the Careers and Employability Service for advertising vacancies. Going forward, all part-time, temporary and seasonal roles will now also be advertised on TargetConnect, meaning students can access graduate schemes and jobs, internships, volunteering and now part-time vacancies in one place!

Students will still access the Jobshop website, however, they will now be directed to TargetConnect, to browse jobs and apply. Students will need to log in with their Kent credentials to access the jobs portal. Over the next few weeks, part-time roles will begin to be added to TargetConnect.

Employers can still advertise a part-time vacancy for free, by emailing Jobshop: jobshop@kent.ac.uk or by visiting their website: https://kentunion.co.uk/jobshop/employers.

The Careers and Employability Service and Jobshop look forward to this new partnership!

Sally Mathias

Alumni Spotlight: Sally Mathias, Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship

Sally Mathias currently works for Ofcom, as part of their Content Policy team. The team, which focuses on policy for TV and radio broadcasting, has been looking at emerging trends in the way content is viewed (such as subscription services like Netflix, and catch-up services).

After completing a Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship at the University of Kent in July 2021, Sally successfully applied for a higher-level Policy Adviser role at Ofcom, a role she will take up in September. We caught up with Sally to learn more about her experience as an apprentice.

Why did you choose a higher apprenticeship over a university degree?  

When I left sixth form, I was the only person in my year who decided not to go to university. It would have been easy to go along with everyone else and be persuaded into going by my teachers. The main reason I decided against it was because I didn’t want to spend a lot of money studying for a degree when I didn’t know what I was going to do with it at the end. An apprenticeship offered a more direct pathway into a career, with practical on-the-job training and a job likely at the end of it – and I didn’t have to pay anything to do it.  Even though it was scary to turn down the place at university, after successfully completing my apprenticeship and gaining a job that I really enjoy, I’m so pleased I made that decision!

How did you become an apprentice?  

I saw the job advert and decided to apply, as I had all the desired qualifications and the role looked interesting!

Could you describe a typical day in your current role?  

We work on projects which often span over a few months (sometimes even years for big projects!) so the daily work is always different depending on what stage of a project you are at. You might be doing research into an area at the start of a project, meeting with stakeholders to discuss policy change or the issues they are facing, meeting with the project team for a workshop to discuss ideas, or – if the project is at a later stage – you might be helping to draft a statement or report for publication.

Can you tell us about your experience of combining paid work with academic studies? Have there been any challenges?  

One thing I found particularly tricky, and wasn’t something I’d expected to be difficult, was switching between different writing styles. For instance, when completing study work, I’d be writing an academic essay, with references to other essays and literature. This style of writing can require the need to show explanation and depth of understanding of a topic. At work, I would be drafting a report or document where I needed to be more concise or write in ‘plain English’ to make the document more accessible for people to read. Switching between the two formats of writing was challenging, but I think it improved my writing skills overall and helped in learning to write for different audiences.

The programme is delivered primarily online as a flexible distance-learning experience – can you tell us what the online learning experience was like for you?

Online learning worked well for me, as it meant I didn’t have to travel to study – I could study at home or find a quiet space in my workplace. The fact that all the content is available online meant I could complete it at my own pace on study days and spend more or less time on different topics depending on how much I understood about them. All the lecturers I had for the course were there to answer questions via email. We knew when they would run check-in sessions if we wanted to speak with them about the work, so I felt supported and able to get help when I needed it.

Is there anything you learnt in particular during your higher apprenticeship that helps you now in your day-to-day working life?  

Time management! Having to split my time between work and study has been a challenge at times but it has prepared me well for when I need to manage time for two different projects or tasks at work. Overall, doing an apprenticeship means you are learning new knowledge whilst applying new skills on a daily basis. So it’s also made me feel more confident in applying new knowledge quickly and being proactive at improving new skills and participating in training activities.

Looking back, did your apprenticeship live up to your expectations? What were some of the highlights of the higher apprenticeship for you?

Policy was never something I considered as a career path, and I didn’t really know what to expect when I applied for the apprenticeship, but it’s proven to be a really interesting experience! Learning about how policy is made has been interesting. And getting experience of doing a job in policy has been challenging at times but it’s the type of job I have always wanted to have – you’re always learning new things, working on a variety of tasks, and have lots of opportunities to work with colleagues and share ideas.

In what ways has this higher apprenticeship made a difference to you and your career?  

The apprenticeship has enabled me to gain a higher level qualification and this achievement, along with the training and experience I have gained in the role, has helped me gain a job I am passionate about. It has opened up a career path that looks exciting. I have the determination to progress and develop my skills.

What are your future plans/aspirations? How do you see your career progressing?  

Moving into my new permanent role in September, I aim to take on some more responsibility including improving my skills in project management. I’d also like to commit some more of my time to internal organisational activities and give back some of the support that colleagues have given me over the course of my apprenticeship! I think the apprenticeship scheme is a great route into a career in policy, so I’d also like to help new apprentices on the scheme and raise awareness of what it can offer if you’re prepared to work hard.

What advice would you give to people considering a Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship?

The prospect of doing something different can be a bit daunting, especially when people act like university is the only good option – don’t be put off by this! Think about what YOU want to do and if you’re considering the Policy Officer apprenticeship then you don’t have much to lose in applying; you can ask more questions about the role if you get an interview, you won’t have to pay for it, and it only takes two years to complete the course. Chances are you will enjoy the role, and if not then it’s more experience and another qualification gained in your pursuit to find what career you want to do! The University of Kent has been a great place to do the course. We have had support with our studies and been able to discuss the work with teachers and advisors who are experienced in teaching and giving support to higher level students and apprentices.


The Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship at the University of Kent

Our Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship is designed for employers looking to develop their in-house talent in policy analysis or policy advice. It’s a unique formal qualification that equips apprentices to progress in their role, whether they work within central and local government or within companies, campaign groups, charities and membership organisations that strive to influence government policy.

It combines on-the-job training with off-the-job learning as an alternative to a university foundation degree over a period of 24 months, with the option to start in September 2021 or January 2022. There are two modes of delivery on offer: one that is 100% online learning and one that also includes face-to-face teaching. On successful completion, apprentices receive a Certificate of Higher Education in Policy Studies and an Apprenticeship.

Want to know more?

For more information about the Level 4 Policy Officer Higher Apprenticeship at Kent:

Gulbenkian Café is open for brunch and lunch!

The Gulbenkian Café’s kitchen has reopened serving a brand new brunch and lunch menu, Monday to Friday, 10.00 – 16.30.

With locally sourced produce and ingredients, try our new Kentish Mac and Cheese, Canterbury Cobble Cheese and Bacon Burger or sample our American-Style Pancakes served with lashings of golden syrup and seasonal Kentish fruit.

Weekends and Weekday evenings:

Our kitchen remains closed but takeaway drinks and snacks will be available for cinema and theatre event audiences.

Drill Hall Library

Drill Hall Library summer improvement works

This summer the library’s Quiet and Silent Zones will get a fresh new look! The zones will be revamped with a new layout and furniture for a better study experience.
Some of these works may cause some noise disruption in parts of the library so we apologise in advance.

Study spaces
The access to these zones will be sectioned off during July to allow work to take place.
All students can still find plenty of usable study space in the Group Zone.

The Drill Hall library summer opening hours:

Monday to Friday 9:00 – 19:00
Saturday and Sunday 9:00 – 17:00

How can I borrow or access books this summer at the Drill Hall Library?
Whilst we are refurbishing the Quiet and Silent Zones, you won’t be able to access books by yourself after 2nd July, but we can help you!
1. Select items from the library catalogue and complete a book retrieval request form available at the reception.
2. Hand the form to staff at the reception and a staff member will come to assist you.
3. Once you receive the items requested you can add them to your Library account using our self-service machines.

Book moves
Books belonging to the Computing, Sports and Exercise Sciences will move to the University of Kent Templeman Library in Canterbury this summer. There will be periods when access to these books will be limited, but arrangements will be put in place should you require effected items. Please contact your liaison librarian if you have any questions or concerns. Email dhl-librarians@gre.ac.uk

 

See the Drill Hall Library website for Latest News updates or follow the library on social media (TwitterFacebookInstagram).

Louis Bachaud wins prestigious Best Presentation Award

PhD candidate, Louis Bachaud, has won the best presentation prize in his session at the 3rd Annual Haifa International Social Sciences Workshop for Graduate Students. This year the theme was BEYOND THE IVORY TOWER: BRIDGING BETWEEN SCIENCE AND SOCIETY.

Louis presented on The Use of Life Sciences in Contemporary American Manosphere Discourse. He is examining the use and mis-use of evolutionary theory in men’s rights and incel spaces online. Louis is a co-tutelle student jointly supervised by Dr Sarah Johns here at SAC and Prof Hélène Quanquin of the University of Lille. He will be based in Canterbury from Septemeber 2022.

The organisers wrote to Louis to  say “We wish to congratulate you on your outstanding presentation at the 3rd HSSC conference for graduate students, while the workshop moderator Prof. Chaim Noy wrote for choosing your presentation as the winning presentation:

“Louis’s research on the manosphere and how science is being appropriated in a deterministic, and potentially chauvinistic use was most appropriate to be the winner today in this year’s workshop.”