Category Archives: Hello Kent

Free sport and fitness membership

Kent Sport are here to help you stay active while you study at the University of Kent. That’s why, for the first time ever, we’re giving all first-year students FREE sport and fitness membership which includes unlimited gym and classes, access for club training, discounted fitness services, and lots more.

Free membership applies to:

  • All first-year students
  • All UG and PG students living in Canterbury campus accommodation

Membership will be automatically added to your Kent One card, so you’ll be able to book activities as soon as you’ve registered*

To see if you’re eligible for free membership, visit our webpage.

There are also free membership options for students at the Medway campus.

*Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, we have implemented safety measures throughout our facilities which will restrict access. All activities, including the gym, classes and sports, will need to be pre-booked through your online account. 

Hello from Library and IT services!

Welcome to Kent’s Library and IT services!

If you’re a new student at Kent, you’ll soon be using the Library, IT systems and study spaces to help you do your work. Here’s what to consider before you arrive on campus.

Activate your IT Account

Before enrolling, you must activate your Kent IT account. When your account is ready to activate, we’ll email you: this will be up to 48 hours after you receive your ‘How to enrol’ message in your KentVision in-tray.

Set up Kent Wi-Fi

To make life easier once you get here, get Wi-Fi-ready before you arrive. You don’t need to be in range of our signal – the setup process is much easier if you do it before you arrive, especially for laptops (or for any devices that rely on Wi-Fi) so don’t wait – follow the set up link below from your laptop, tablet or phone.

Check your tech

You’ll need your own desktop or laptop, which you’ll need to use frequently for your studies: make sure this meets our recommended  minimum specification.

Before you start packing, check that your technology will work on campus. If you’ll struggle to buy or access the required tech, there may be some support available depending on your circumstances.

Bring a network/Ethernet cable for the wired internet in your campus bedroom. Wired internet is fast (as there’s no risk of interference) and you’ll need to use it if you want to connect a TV or games console (they can’t use our Wi-Fi network).

Don’t rush to buy software! 

You can get Microsoft Office 365 and other study-related software for free: find out about our free software for students which is available to you.

Don’t rush to buy books!

Essential texts for modules may change each year, so look at your 2020-21 reading list before buying any subject-related books or resources.

If your lecturer thinks you need your own copy of a book, they will tell you. Most of the resources you’ll need will be available through the Library.

Library and IT support

There’s plenty of help with using our library services, setting up your devices and accessing the IT systems and tools available to you as you get started at Kent.

See our essential Hello Library and IT! guide for all you need as you get started at Kent.

Want to ask us a question?

Contact our IT & Library Support Desk:

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram for all the latest updates and tips.

Online Learning at Kent: A Guide to Successful Study Online

Feeling anxious about online study? Wondering how it will all work?

Available in Moodle, the Online Learning at Kent: A Guide to Successful Study Online module has been created by the University’s E-Learning team to help you get the very best out of online learning.

The Online Learning at Kent module is designed to help you with the transition to online study as part of our blended learning approach. Through this module you can familiarise yourself with both the technologies you will be using as part of your studies and the types of online and interactive activities you are likely to experience. There is an emphasis on digital accessibility and how you can engage with resources to suit your needs. Most importantly, the module will enable you to be able to do the right things to gain the most benefit from online learning.

“Determination will take you anywhere” – overcoming injury to achieve success

As part of our new student success series, History student Ben Thomas shares how he overcame injury in his first year to achieve success. He explores how both his mindset and support from others helped him through this difficult time.

What happened?

‘At the end of my first academic week at Kent in my first year I very unfortunately dislocated my kneecap. This led to me being unable to walk for approximately 5 months and I still have problems at times now.’

What did you do about your injury? Did you feel supported?

‘The support that Kent offered me was amazing, even to the extent of offering deferment, but I understood that this was a life changing decision I could not undertake. I was focused on doing well in my degree despite the circumstances that arose and could not tolerate losing a year of my education. I was offered a wheelchair but I understood that this was a task I needed to complete myself. Every day I crutched to Lectures and seminars from Eliot college around campus despite the painful blisters and exhaustion I may have endured, my determination to succeed overrode any problems that arose. I am proud to say that I achieved a pass with distinction (equivalent to a first-class grade) in my History course, thanks in no small part to the support received by my peers, professors, and the Kent support team.’

Do you have any advice for others going through a difficult time?

‘With the inability to walk combined with a lockdown situation from a global pandemic this has easily been the most difficult part of my life, but I always remembered that one of my old teachers told me that as long as you have determination, that determination will take you anywhere and I sit in lockdown determined to improve myself academically and professionally ready for when this unfortunate situation hopefully passes.’

-Ben Thomas, studying Ancient, Medieval and Modern History (second year).

Ben Thomas

If you have a success story you’d like to share, please email stories@kent.ac.uk.

You can also contact Student Support and Wellbeing if you require any support for long-term health conditions, a disability or for your mental health. There’s also plenty more support available during your time at Kent.

Entrance to the Drill Hall Library in the sunshine

Support at Medway

We understand that this year is going to be different and you may feel like you need additional support when it comes to studying online and looking after your wellbeing. But please don’t worry, there are loads of people on hand at the University to help. 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

Studying for a degree is very different to studying at school. You have a lot more control over your learning and greater independence.

You will also be asked to do things you’ve never had to do before (eg referencing in a certain way or writing a dissertation). This is where the Student Learning and Advisory Service (SLAS for short) steps in. SLAS can help you with everything from perfecting your essay writing to learning how to reference properly.

As part of our blended learning approach, you may want to take our Online Learning at Kent: A Guide to Successful Study moodle module to help familiarise yourself with online study. You can also find more help with your studies on the coronavirus studying webpage.

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.

GKSU

GKSU are your Students’ Union at Medway. From money worries to housing issues, academic problems to visa support, GKSU 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.

If you have Covid-19 symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate, please see our coronavirus health and wellbeing page.

Chaplaincy

University Chaplains run a wide range of religious and social events. They are also a good contact for advice and support. You can also see their guidance around socially distanced faith and worship.

Support at Canterbury

We understand that this year is going to be different and you may feel like you need additional support when it comes to studying online and looking after your wellbeing. But please don’t worry, there are loads of people on hand at the University to help. 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

Studying for a degree is very different to studying at school. You have a lot more control over your learning and greater independence.

You will also be asked to do things you’ve never had to do before (eg referencing in a certain way or writing a dissertation). This is where the Student Learning and Advisory Service (SLAS for short) steps in. SLAS can help you with everything from perfecting your essay writing to learning how to reference properly.

As part of our blended learning approach, you may want to take our Online Learning at Kent: A Guide to Successful Study moodle module to help familiarise yourself with online study. You can also find more help with your studies on the coronavirus studying webpage.

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. Currently you need to call the Nursing Service on 01227 469333 before visiting them.

If you have Covid-19 symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate, please see our coronavirus health and wellbeing page.

Chaplaincy

University Chaplains run a wide range of religious and social events. They are also a good contact for advice and support. You can also see their guidance around socially distanced faith and worship.

 

What to and what not to bring with you

You are starting your first year at University so how do you decide which products to bring or not to bring? We asked our current students for their expertise.

The best place to start is to double check what is included in your room already, depending whether you’re living on the Canterbury or Medway campus.

Once you’ve done that, here’s our list of key things to remember.

1. Electronic essentials
Laptop, phone, tablet…check, don’t forget your chargers and your headphones too. Memory sticks and fans are rated high on most previous student’s lists as well. If you’re coming from overseas buy a high-quality international adapter, these are available to purchase at your college reception if needed.

You will need your own desktop or laptop, which you’ll need to use frequently for your studies: make sure it meets this minimum specification. If you’ll struggle to buy or access the required tech, there may be some support available depending on your circumstances.

Before you start packing, check that your technology will work on campus: if your printer or smart device (TV, speaker, streaming device) relies on Wi-Fi, it won’t work (it needs to have an Ethernet port and wired internet capability, or to connect directly to your computer). Bring a network/Ethernet cable for the wired internet in your bedroom. Wired internet is fast and reliable as there’s no risk of interference.

2. Bedding
Don’t buy new bedding until you have accepted your accommodation offer and you know your exact room number.  Why? We have different size beds in different rooms on the Canterbury campus, so always check your bed size before you buy (Medway Pier Quays accommodation – you have it easier, as all beds are 4 foot).

3. Clothes
Pack for all four season as the weather is unpredictable. To help keep your room clutter free, make sure you pack enough hangers for your wardrobe

4. Cooking utensils
If you live in part-catered accommodation you shouldn’t need anything beyond your basic crockery and cutlery, as kettles are provided and toasters aren’t allowed. If you’re going to live in self-catered accommodation we suggest just buying a set of crockery and cutlery for yourself, plus food storage containers and basic pots and pans to get you started. Holly Donkersloot, Psychology student, says, “bring coloured crockery so you don’t all get confused about whose everything is!”

5. Cleaning supplies

It’s your responsibility to clean up after yourself and collectively with your flat/house mates. To help we’ve provided cleaning products in the accommodation kitchens and cleaning cloths in your bedroom for when you arrive, but when you pop to the shops you’ll still need to pick-up a few other cleaning bits and bobs like washing up liquid, sponges, and laundry detergent.

5. Stationery
The usual suspects from your college pencil case, pins for your noticeboard and white tack for your posters is a good start. Your school should let you know if you need any subject specific items.

6. Decorations
As long as it doesn’t mark the furniture or walls (we suggest command strips) then you are welcome to decorate your room. So print pictures; bring your favourite books; posters; battery-powered fairy lights; pack of cards; and things that make it feel like home. Of course, there are some obvious (and less obvious) restricted items.

Don’t rush to buy

Don’t buy any subject books or resources until you’ve been told to do so by your school or lecturer. If the lecturer thinks you need your own copy of a book, they will tell you. Most other resources you will need should be available through the library. Modules are updated each year and essential texts may change so wait for your 2020-2021 reading list.

You won’t need to buy Microsoft 365 – you get FREE on to up five devices when you get your IT Account!

Restricted items

…on to the serious stuff. There are some items you should not bring to University, including:

  • Anything with a naked flame, such as candles, incense, joss sticks, oil burners, barbeques, lighters, or smoking paraphernalia.
  • Electronics must all be in good, safe working order. However, some items are completely banned, such as heating appliances like heated airers, cooling appliances like mini refrigerators or air conditioning units and multi-way cube adaptors.
  • No pets
  • Finally, we know it sounds pretty obvious, but please do not bring any dangerous items such as flammable liquids, nitrous oxide cylinders, weapons (including replicas) or fireworks.

If you are in doubt about any item please get in touch with the Accommodation Team.

Follow us

Keep an eye on the Accommodation Twitter and Facebook pages for more top tips and useful information before you arrive. We look forward to welcoming you to Kent soon!

Student recommendation – Three Things To Bring To University

screen shot of app

App for quick access to student advice

Check out the new MOSAIC app for students. The app brings together a collection of short videos for new, returning and final year students. Videos include advice from both staff and students about support and opportunities available at the University of Kent.

If you have feedback or would like to contribute to the app, please email studentsuccessproject@kent.ac.uk.

Kent’s outdoor walks and activities

Being a student cannot be all work and no play, you need to make time for some fun and relaxation. One of the perks of studying at Kent is access to lots of outdoor space; from beaches to scenic parks and historic buildings, Kent has it all.

Canterbury

Cathedral to Coast Cycle Ride – Canterbury to Dover

Undertake your own Pilgrim’s Progress on this 50 mile circular ride that links Canterbury, Dover and Folkestone. The route passes along leafy lanes and bridleways amid rolling hills, wide skies, woodland, country villages and hamlets.

Marlowe’s Canterbury Walk

The aim of this walk is for you to explore the life of Christopher Marlowe, who is Britain’s best known playwright. The route takes you on a journey around the heart of Canterbury, visiting places he would have known, and offering an insight into his life.

Kent Food Trails

Kent Food Trails are designed to encourage visitors and locals alike to discover new places and taste new dishes. You will meet fantastic food and drinks producers and farmers from all over Kent.

Via Francigena

If you fancy a real adventure then consider Via Francigena which is an ancient route that starts at Canterbury Cathedral and passes through France, Switzerland, across the Alps and through Italy finally finishing in Rome. You will step into the shoes of Sigeric the Serious, a famous Archbishop of Canterbury, and follow his journey across the Via Francigena to meet Pope John XV in Rome back in 990 AD.

Medway

Fort Amherst

Fort Amherst is a free-to-visit historical site  with 20 acres of green space all linked to the Great Lines Heritage Park. You will be able to explore tunnels, nature trails, ditches, ammunition magazines, cannons, soldier’s quarters and fortifications.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham

This is Chatham’s holy grail and steeped in history. The Crown and Call the Midwife have been filmed here along with many films. A visit here will ensure you return to the ‘Age of Sail’ when the Dockyard built mighty ships that mastered the world’s oceans. Test your sea legs as you peer through the periscope of HMS Ocelot, a Cold War Submarine; take charge on the bridge of HMS Cavalier, a Second World War Destroyer; and ring the ship’s bell on the deck of HMS Gannet, our Victorian Sloop.  Watch our Master Ropemakers at work using centuries old techniques on in our Victorian Ropery.

Picture from Canterbury City Council.

Societies at Kent

Are you wondering what the societies at Kent are like? This video contains interviews from some of our current students about their experiences of societies here at Kent. There are plenty available for you to sign up to when you arrive at both Canterbury and Medway.