Author Archives: Miriam Sandiford

group of students at Global Hangout in photo booth

Online Global Hangout- Friday 29 May

We are very excited to announce our first online Global Hangout! This will take place on Friday 29 May. There are a variety of sessions available and you can sign up to one or all or them.  Once you have registered your attendance you will be sent joining instructions for your event.

Kent WebChat 10.00 – 11.00 UK Time – Sign up
An informal series of live online discussions via Zoom designed to help you keep in touch with other students and staff at the University.  The theme for this week’s WebChat is ‘next steps’ with the Careers and Employability Service as well as other University colleagues sharing information about further study options available at Kent.  You will have the opportunity to submit questions in advance or during the WebChat which the panel will answer.

Sustaining Happiness 12.30 – 13.30 UK Time – Sign up
Whether you are in a happy place now or not, or whether Covid-19 has impacted your wellbeing, this interactive session will present you with a formula to develop an insight into how you can sustain happiness in your life through meaningful activities.  Includes a surprise gift of happiness at the end of the session! (This session will be delivered by Ozin, (Prof. Nitin Arora) from our partner institution, Amity University.)
In addition to registering for the event, please spend 5 minutes completing this questionnaire in advance to help you get the most out of the session.  

Global Hangout Quiz 15.00-16.00 UK Time – Sign up
Test your knowledge from around the world at this fun, relaxed event which includes live music.  A great opportunity to chat and meet with friends.

mental health spelt out with tile letters

Mental Health Awareness Week- reading ideas

The theme for Mental Health Awareness Week 2020 has been kindness. Throughout the week you might have seen us sharing some kindness in the form of book recommendations on our social media. We focused on titles that have been good for our Mental Health during lockdown and we hope that if you read any of them, they’ll have the same positive effects for you too.

Here’s a compilation video of all the recommendations from Templeman Library staff and your Kent Union officers. Do you spot any familiar faces?

Scroll down for a list of the titles mentioned. Let us know in the comments if you’ve read any of these, or if you’re thinking of adding any of them to your collection.

Christine Davis, Templeman Library Learning Environment Assistant
Game of Thrones audio-books by George R.R. Martin
The FODMAP Friendly Kitchen by Emma Hatcher

Omolade Adedapo , Kent Union VP Welfare
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Sue Grimer, Templeman Library Assistant (Social Sciences)
Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach

Sasha Langeveldt, Kent Union President
21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuvul Noah Harari

Veronica Lawrence, Templeman Library Head of Front Line Services
The Windhover by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Sarah Field, Templeman Library Sciences Librarian
Wintering: How I learned to flourish when life became frozen, by Katherine May

Theresa Thurston, Templeman Library Law Librarian
Lean in 15 by Joe Wicks


three book stack

What to do with your library books (Templeman)

While the Templeman Library remains closed due to COVID-19, we want to share advice with you for what to do with your library books, depending on your situation.

Returning to Kent in September

If you’re coming back to Kent next academic year, we recommend you hold onto your books. You won’t have to return them until at least 31 July. We’ll review arrangements over the summer and will be in touch with more information and advice.

If you’re finishing your undergraduate degree, have a confirmed postgraduate place at Kent for September and would prefer to keep your books for now, please contact us.

Books left in campus accommodation

If you have left books in your Canterbury campus accommodation, please email with your details and the room address and we’ll arrange to retrieve them.

Final year student or not returning in September

If you’re a final year student or want to return your books now for another reason, you have several options:

  1. If you live on the Canterbury campus, live locally, or have arranged to collect your belongings from campus, please use the book drop at the Library Road Entrance or return them to any accommodation reception.
  2. Posting books: depending on weight and volume, you could consider breaking up a large parcel into smaller ones. Courier services (like Parcel Monkey or Hermes) might be cheaper than Royal Mail and pick up the parcel from you. Whatever method you use, please make sure you get a receipt.
    Our postal address is: Templeman Library, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NU
  3. If you’re unable to return your books by any of these methods, please get in touch with us and we’ll work out a solution with you.

Contact us

Please contact us if you need any help or advice around returning books or any other library or IT query. We know these are difficult times, and our staff are here to help and support you:

guy playing guitar in university bedroom

Launch of virtual buddy scheme

The Virtual Buddy Scheme is a peer to peer non-academic support scheme coordinated by Kent Union that helps students through university life.

During the current pandemic it provides a welcomed opportunity for students to connect and look out for each other, wherever you are at the moment. You’ll be matched based on your indicated preferences; whether that’s what you are currently studying, your interests and hobbies or how you are currently keeping busy.

Find a buddy

If you’re feeling a little disconnected, you might benefit from finding a buddy. You will be matched based on your preferences and what you might need right now, whether that’s someone to chat to about how you’re feeling or someone to play online games with. Kent Union will organise various virtual events where you can meet with other students; we encourage our buddy partnerships to meet at least once a week, but there is nothing stopping you meeting virtually every day.

Become a buddy volunteer

We feel that it’s more meaningful for students to be matched with someone who knows what it’s like to be a student at Kent and can identify with other students’ experiences. Being a buddy volunteer can be a great opportunity to give something back and support others. Kent Union match you based on your preferences with someone who they think you’ll be able to support- you might end up becoming friends for life!

Find out more on the Kent Union buddy webpage. If you have any questions please e-mail

Seedlings in pots

Kent Community Oasis Garden online wellbeing sessions

The Kent Community Oasis Garden (KentCOG), is a collection of students, staff and community members working to create a sustainability and wellbeing hub centred around growing food.

Due to current circumstances the garden is closed, however, we recognise how important connecting with nature is especially for our mental health.

To fill the gap, KentCOG Coordinator Emily Hill is hosting weekly Grow Your Wellbeing online sessions via Zoom every Wednesday afternoon (14.00-15.00) with practical advice on trying Ecotherapy at home.

Sign up by visiting and complete a registration form online, or email

The session is part of a weekly digital timetable of workshops run by East Kent Mind who are partnering with The University of Kent to deliver the KentCOG project as a space to support good mental health and wellbeing.

To find out more please email Emily at or visit the KentCOG blog. You can also follow KentCOG on Instagram.

Keynes Virtual Summer Festival of Arts- enter to win up to £100!

Calling all Students!

Have you been getting creative during lock-down? Instead of Keynestock this year, which sadly cannot happen, Keynes College is excited to announce the launch of our Summer Festival of Arts! Starting from today, Friday 15 May, we will be accepting submissions for any creative medium which you have developed or would like to develop over the course of lock down!

This could be a photograph, painting, poem, song or dance routine- even perhaps a crochet or knitted creation!

We are eager to share your creativity and showcase your talents, and ask that you upload submissions on our Facebook Page  @ Keynes College Student Committeealong with your name, medium and title. Give the page a like and a follow to stay up-to-date with announcements and be inspired by others’ creations!

All students can enter. One entry per person. Submissions close on Friday, 5 June and winners will be announced on 12 June, so get sharing for your chance to win one of our amazing cash prizes:

1st Place: £100
2nd Place: £80
3rd Place: £50

 Our 1st Place winner will also get the chance to showcase their creation permanently in Keynes College!

So… get creative!!


students walking on campus

Statement of intent regarding Autumn 2020

The University of Kent is looking forward to welcoming new and returning students in the autumn of 2020. We will, as now, be open for business when the autumn term begins on 21 September 2020.

However, we recognise that the COVID-19 pandemic will continue to have an impact on how we all live and work. It is likely that we will have to adapt how we deliver our education, and the wider student experience of university life, in response to changes in government requirements.

We realise what an anxious time this is and want to assure you that planning is already underway to prepare the University for the next academic year. If necessary, we will adapt our teaching styles and delivery methods to ensure that the education and experience of students remains of the highest quality possible and occurs in a safe and effective manner – taking into consideration relevant advice and guidelines that are in place at the time. The safety and wellbeing of our students, staff, visitors and surrounding communities will continue to be our highest priority.

We are committed to ensuring that the standards that led to the University being rated as gold in the Teaching Excellence Framework are upheld, whether that teaching is delivered face-to-face, online or in a blended form of the two with appropriate social distancing in place. Our community of teaching, research and professional services staff will ensure that all education continues to be both a stimulating and fulfilling experience for all our students whether they are at Canterbury, Medway, Brussels or Paris.

We know our campuses are an important part of student life and we look forward to welcoming you all on to campus as soon as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, as we transition back to more usual ways of working, we promise you that, as a member of the University, you will be part of a diverse, dynamic and supportive community and receive an education of the highest possible standard.

Staff member with equipment to fight against COVID-19

Fundraising campaign to support Kent’s COVID-19 response

The University has launched a fundraising campaign to help support its contribution to the fight against COVID-19.

The campaign aims to raise funds for the production of free-of-charge PPE for front-line staff, those students who may be experiencing financial hardship as a result of the pandemic, Kent research and the new Kent and Medway Medical School.

The campaign was launched via messages of encouragement and support from the University’s Chancellor Gavin Esler, and Kent Union President Sasha Langeveldt. Watch their video here.

Kent has contributed to the fight against the pandemic in a number of ways. To date these include:

  • research collaborations to develop COVID-19 therapies and a vaccine
  • the  design and production of face shields for staff in the NHS, hospice and charitable care organisations
  • the provision of specialist molecular biology equipment to the NHS
  • academics, postdoctoral researchers and PhD students volunteering to help perform testing at hospitals in the county
  • students supporting the local agricultural economy through fruit-picking

To donate to this important campaign please go here.

close up of hedgehog on leaves

Hedgehog Awareness Week, 3-9 May 2020

Hedgehog Awareness Week is organised by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS) and takes place every year. It aims to highlight the problems hedgehogs face and how you can help them.

The hedgehog is in trouble, with populations plummeting 50% since 2000. Increasing habitat loss means hedgehogs are moving out of their rural homes and into built areas. But here they face a whole host of challenges, including road traffic, litter, poisoning and lack of access to food and water. In 2019 the RSPCA saw Hedgehog admissions to their wildlife centres break all records with 2770 hedgehogs being admitted.  Reasons for this include variations in weather causing a reduction in food availability meaning hedgehogs struggling to make it through the winter.

We are lucky enough to have hedgehogs on our campus however, the roads that cut through campus are causing particular issues with hedgehogs being hit by vehicles, as well as litter causing issues for hedgehogs and other wildlife on campus.

In July 2019 the University launched its participation in the Hedgehog Friendly Campus project– created at the University of Sheffield to use the unique spaces that university campuses are, to raise awareness of the plight of UK hedgehogs and take action to safeguard their future.

The University has a hedgehog action group made up of student and staff volunteers from across the University working together to address these issues. This group has taken a number of actions to help support hedgehogs on campus including litter picking, awareness raising and providing toolbox talks for the Landscape and Grounds Team so that they know what to do if they find an injured hedgehog, how to check for them before strimming and what are the biggest risks to hedgehogs on campus.

The University was awarded a Bronze certificate for its efforts by the Hedgehog Friendly Campus Project earlier this year and since then the action group have been developing plans for further initiatives we can do, including surveying and signage.

Whilst we are all in lockdown there are number of things we can all do to help support local hedgehogs, especially those of us that have gardens. Simple actions like: creating a log pile, checking areas before strimming, and building a hedgehog home can make a huge difference to your local population of hedgehogs. This year the BHPS are asking people to talk to their neighbours (from a distance) about cutting a CD case sized hole in the bottom of fences to create a hedgehog highway between gardens.

You can find out more information about things you can do on the BHPS website and get involved with the University of Kent Hedgehog action group by emailing Throughout the week the Sustainability Team will be posting tips, actions and activities on their Instagram @unikent.sustainability.