Category Archives: Medway

Christmas trees

Winter at Kent

If you are staying over in Kent during the winter break you will be delighted to know that there are many activities for you take part in.

From our campuses at Canterbury and Medway to the town centres, there is everything from visiting Christmas markets, sightseeing, attending the theatre, going Christmas sale shopping or even sledging.

While our campuses have a limited opening hours you will still be able to access the library, IT services, restaurants, bars and sports centre.

With regards to Medway and Canterbury the festive period will be a great chance for you to explore the local area and take part in the many activities.

You can find out about the campus Christmas hours here.

Travel regarding Brexit

If you are a UK National travelling abroad during the Christmas period you will need to head to the UK Government Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) for information where they have a dedicated website with up-to-date travel advice after Brexit.

You can get latest updates from the FCO Travel Advice Twitter feed (@FCOTravel) and via the hashtag #PrepareforEUExit.

The University’s Estates team has information on travel disruption around campus. Many travel providers also have specific Brexit advice relevant to their services on their website, including Eurotunnel and National Express.

If you are not a UK National there will be no change to the rights and status of EU/EEA citizens currently living in the UK until 31 December 2020. This means that if you travel outside of the UK during your studies, you should be able to return as normal.

Students who are non-EU/EEA nationals but are a dependant of an EU/EEA national should ensure that they hold a valid family permit.

For those coming to the UK from outside the EU, you will still be able to travel provided your Tier 4 visa is valid.

There is more information on the potential impact of Brexit on students on the Brexit pages of our website.

If you are staying over in Kent during the winter break you will be delighted to know that there are many activities for you take part in.

GCDC Doctoral Scholarships 2020

The Global Challenges Doctoral Centre (GCDC) has launched a call for PhD applications for ten doctoral scholarships starting in September 2020. GCDC scholarships are open to new, full-time PhD applicants in any discipline (based in either Canterbury or Medway) whose research meets Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) funding criteria.

GCDC scholars will receive the following:

• Annual stipend at UKRI rates for 3.5 years (TBC but this was £15,009 for 2019/20);

• Annual tuition fees at UKRI Home/EU rates for 3.5 years (£4,327 for 2019/20);

• A Research Training Support Grant of £1,500 per year for the first 3 years of study; and

• Specialised interdisciplinary GCDC cohort training activities.

Applications for GCDC scholarships can be both student-led and project-led.

More information about GCDC project-led scholarships is available via the links below:

• School of Biosciences/School of Economics: ‘Investigating the diarrhoeal pathogens in vulnerable populations in developing countries’ 

• School of Anthropology and Conservation: ‘Human-elephant co-existence in a post-ivory ban landscape’ 

• School of Politics and International Relations: ‘Engaging citizens in Post-Conflict Reconstruction’ 

• School of Biosciences: ‘Defining the molecular basis and health benefits of traditional Asian medicines’ 

• Kent School of Architecture and Planning: ‘The Urban Agriculture Nexus: an investigation on urban food growing in the barrios of Bogatà’

More information 
Visit the GCDC Scholarships page for more information on how to apply.

Text saying: International Mens Day November 19

International Men’s Day event – 19 November

It is a common feature of gender equality events that most of the attendees are women so we often miss out on the male voice when discussing issues that affect us all such as work-life balance, wellbeing and workplace culture.

Last year the Athena SWAN team addressed this by surveying* our male colleagues on their experience of gender equality in the workplace.

This year we are using the occasion of International Men’s Day to hold a panel and audience discussion, on the key themes arising from the survey:

  • Does it feel that gender equality initiatives are targeted only at women?
  • Is there a macho culture that prevents an inclusive one?
  • What is it like being a Dad at the University?

The event is being held in Grimond Lecture Theatre 3, Tuesday 19 November. Teas, coffees and afternoon treats from 14.30 and discussion 15.00-16.00.

Everyone is welcome! Book your place and pass on the details to any colleagues you think may be interested.

*You can read more about the responses to our gender equality surveys on our Equality Matters blog.

well being

Introduction to Mental Health

The University of Kent UCU Branch is delighted to announce that on Friday 6 December from 13.00 – 14.00 in Sibson Lecture Theatre 1 at Canterbury. The Inclusion Initiative will be delivering a session for staff at Kent on ‘Introduction to Mental Health’.

The session will cover:

•             Considering the definition of mental health

•             Stigma and discrimination

•             Parity of esteem

•             How to support someone- introduction of the aid memoire HELD

•             Self-care and wellbeing

 Please book via Eventbrite:

 All welcome and please do feel free to bring along non-UCU staff members. As you will be aware, the number of university workers accessing counselling and occupational health services has shot up, according to research which describes “an epidemic” of poor mental health among higher education staff. Mental health problems within the student community are also on the rise, with student suicides reaching a record level in recent years. Please do pass on to colleagues/contacts who may be interested in attending this useful workshop.

Window with paper that has mindfullness written on it

Learn more about the Mindfulness@Kent initiative

Colleagues are invited to the Learning and Teaching Network session titled ‘The Mindfulness@Kent initiative: what is it, why is it needed and does it really work?’

The session takes place on Wednesday 20 November, 13.00-14.00, Cornwallis North West Seminar Room 6.

Dr Elisabeth Curling, Senior Lecture at the school of Bioscience, will lead the session.

Dr Curling will explain how and why the practice of mindfulness across the University is actively helping a diverse range of students (and staff) who are studying and working within the higher education sector at Kent.

The session will focus on our widespread development of staff and student Mindfulness courses and drop-in sessions (from very humble beginnings in 2015) within the University of Kent and elsewhere and how this can really improve both staff and student well-being and academic success.

This session will provide an opportunity to develop a shared understanding of what is Mindfulness, how it positively affects brain function if practised regularly, and how you can get involved in Mindfulness provision for your students.

During the presentation, examples of Mindfulness courses and drop in sessions taking place at Canterbury and Medway will be shared and discussed, as well as giving you a flavour of our future initiatives. Plenty of time will be allocated for questions and discussion after the presentation.

The University Support Prize was awarded to us in July 2019 for this work on Mindfulness provision across the University.

This session will be of particular interest to academic and professional support staff who are involved in supporting students in any way, but all staff are welcome to attend who are interested in finding out more about Mindfulness.

To confirm your attendance please complete the online booking.

Entrance to the Drill Hall Library in the sunshine

Sexual Assault Responders required for Medway campus

Student Support and Wellbeing are looking to recruit staff to the Sexual Assault Responder (SAR) team at Medway.

The role of the Sexual Assault Responder is to provide immediate support to victims of serious sexual assault or rape at the Canterbury and Medway campuses out of hours (between 17.00 and 09.00) and at weekends. Currently we are only recruiting SARs for the Medway campus.

Full training is provided, and SARs operate on a rota system. The role is to provide advice and guidance to victims of serious sexual assault or rape with regards to aftercare support procedures. The role is NOT a counselling role.

SARs receive a £100 remuneration for joining the team and completing the training, and receive £70 for the first hour of a call out, with time and a half for subsequent hours. Any transport costs are also reimbursed.

A Sexual Assault Responder must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a University of Kent member of staff
  • Be able to access the University of Kent Medway campuses within 45 minutes of receiving a phone call from Campus Security out of hours (considering the accessibility of a staff member’s usual mode of transportation when accessing the University)
  • Attend a training session
  • Have the permission of their line manager to register for the role of SAR.

For more information, to request a role description, or to express an interest in becoming a SAR, please email Becky Wyatt in Student Support and Wellbeing.

cork board with yellow post it note with light bulb drawn on it

GCRF and GCDC Funding Opportunities: Staff briefing session

Have you heard about internal Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) opportunities or the Global Challenges Doctoral Centre (GCDC) but are not sure what either is all about?

Dr Beth Breeze, GCDC director, and Dr Andrew Massoura, Deputy Director of Research Services, will lead a GCRF/GCDC staff briefing session on Tuesday, 5 November 2019, 13.00-14.00 in CESR1 (Cornwallis East, ground floor).

The session is open to academic and administrative staff in all schools and centres and will cover the following:

•       The GCDC postdoctoral researcher appointment competition

•       The GCDC student-led scholarship competition

•       The GCRF Partnership Development Fund competition

The session will provide an overview of the competition processes and guidance on ODA compliance and GCRF funding criteria, and there will be plenty of time for questions at the end of the presentation.

Please book a place by emailing Grace Grussenmeyer at

Discount on sports massage appointments- Medway Park

Students and staff at Kent can now receive 25% discount on Sports Massage only appointments. Discounted prices are £15 for 1 hour, or £10 for 30 minutes.

Second and third year Sports Therapy & Rehabilitation students, under the supervision of vastly experienced therapists, provide the services at the University of Kent’s Sports Ready Clinic.

Through the use of state-of-the-art equipment and innovative techniques, you can reduce your pain and aid your recovery time within the following services:

– Sports Therapy & Rehabilitation (diagnose, provide treatment and an exercise plan for a specific injury or pain, not just sporting injuries!).

– Injury Prevention (reduce your risk of injury)

– Sports Massage only

– Alter-G (Anti-Gravity Treadmill) session only

Non-Discounted Prices are £20 for one hour or £15 for 30 minutes.

Discounts are available for Sports Therapy & Rehabilitation, Injury Prevention and Alter-G sessions:

-FREE for University of Kent Sport and Exercise Sciences (SSES) staff & students.

-50% discount for University of Kent staff & students (non SSES).

-25% discount for family of University of Kent staff & students.

-25% discount for University of Kent Alumni.

To book please contact the Sports Ready Clinic, Medway Park below.

Phone: 01634 888137          Email:

Book Online or visit the Sports Ready clinic webpage.

Dr Rocio von Jungenfeld wins the BCS AI Award

Congratulations to Dr Rocio von Jungenfeld, Lecturer in Digital Media at the School of Engineering and Digital Arts on winning the BCS AI Award at The Lumen Prize awards in London on 24 October. The BCS AI Award is conferred for excellence in the use of some form of artificial intelligence to produce an outstanding piece of art.

Her project – Lichtsuchende – was a collaboration with Dave Murray-Rust (University of Edinburgh). The project can be accessed at the Lumen Prize website.

The Lumen Prize for Art and Technology celebrates the very best art created with technology through a global competition, exhibitions and events worldwide.

Photo credit: Chris Scott @chrisdonia

Free fireworks display in Gillingham, 2 November

Students and staff are welcome to attend the 2019 Medway Bonfire and Fireworks Night at The Great Lines Heritage Park, Gillingham.

A bonfire will be lit by the Mayor of Medway at 19.00, followed by a fireworks display at 19.30.

Hot food and drink will be available on site.

Find out more about the Medway Council Bonfire and Firework Night.

Kent students can also attend St Mark’s Vicarage Hall after the fireworks for soup and games 20.00-22.00 (suggested donation £1) with the Medway Chaplaincy.