Ruth Farwell with Bill Turnbull
Music aficionado and entrepreneur, Michael Eavis, and BBC Breakfast presenter, Bill Turnbull, were amongst a distinguished gathering of individuals to be honoured at Bucks New University’s graduation ceremonies in 2009. In the region of 1,500 students received their degree certificates in the presence of family and friends, at eleven ceremonies which took place from 7-11 September at the Wycombe Swan theatre. Founder of the Glastonbury Festival, Michael Eavis, received an honorary degree in recognition of his significant achievements in the music industry, and Bill Turnbull received an award in recognition of his distinguished career in broadcast journalism.
Honorary degrees were also received by: Mike Clare: Recognised for his career achievements, business success and for his charitable work. Mike is a wellknown supporter and advocate of the University. Jon Ingall: Recognised for his significant national and international business reputation, innovation in the field of advertising and continuing close association with the University.
An honorary master’s was received by: Robert Hardie: Recognised for his business achievements, and for his charitable work in the region.
Honorary fellowships were received by: The Rt Hon The Earl of Buckinghamshire: Recognised for his significant contribution to the work of the Council of the University. Brian Callaghan: Recognised for his significant contribution to the work of the Council of the University.
Alexandra Lukjaniec was the first member of her family to graduate from university having gained a Diploma of Higher Education in Nursing. Alexandra’s mother was so delighted with her daughter’s achievements, that she bought 16 tickets for the graduation ceremony. “I didn’t even realise she’d got that many. How embarrassing!” laughs Alex. “They were mostly for family and very, very special people.”
“Anne Steel and Heather Rowe are two lecturers that I’ll never forget. They were the ones who took time to sit down and really go through any aspect of the course that I was struggling with. Without them I don’t think I’d be where I am today,” said Alex. They were not the only ones to inspire Alex: “My mum and dad are a complete inspiration to me. They’ve always believed in me no matter what I did, even when I’d had a bad day and wanted to pack it all in. I guess you could say that they were very pleased when I passed all my exams.”
Alex, chose nursing as a career because she loved working with people from different walks of life, and enjoyed helping them whenever possible. She is now working for Harefield Hospital on the transplant unit.
David Wheeler MVO: Recognised for his career achievements, long-standing position at the Royal Collection, and for his support for courses and students at the University.
The status of Emeritus Professor was bestowed upon: Vince Edwards: Recognised for his significant contribution to the work of the University and continuing research collaboration.
First in the family to graduate
During her years at Bucks on the Diploma of Higher Education, she trained at Hillingdon, Mount Vernon and Harefield Hospitals. All of these taught her to deliver the best care possible, but she also singles out two lecturers at Bucks who made all the difference.
D&D Award Winners
Design award winners graduate Alexandra Sattlecker and Linda Weitgasser, winners of a commendation at the Design & Art Direction Student Awards 2009, graduated with first-class honours degrees in Graphic Design & Advertising. The D&AD Student Awards are a prestigious annual event for advertising and design students around the world. Alexandra and Linda were two of four Bucks New University students, working in pairs, who gained recognition for their work at the 2009 Awards. They received a commendation in the Design Council sponsored Product Design category for their idea for the ‘Empty Bottle’, an initiative designed to make tap water more accessible. “The brief was to create something which makes people choose tap water above bottled water,” said Linda, from Ramsau, Austria. “One problem, we thought, is that you often don’t have a bottle when you are ‘on the go’, so you are left with no other choice than buying bottled water. So, our solution was to bring empty bottles into supermarkets
and unbranded vending machines, next to bottled water, to give consumers the choice in the minute of purchase. We have five different bottles, which all state a different fact about tap water and why it is better than bottled water, so the product is advertising and educating the consumer at the same time.” When asked about their course, Alexandra, from Bischofshofen, Austria, said: “We read about the advertising course in a German book. Then we came over, visited some universities in and around London and chose the BA (Hons) Graphic Design & Advertising course at Bucks. Our advertising tutors were so helpful and designated a lot of their time, and even spare time, to making our university experience really good.” Alexandra and Linda had were also joint winners of a 2009 Saatchi & Saatchi Award, which helped them to gain work placements there, and they were nominated in the 2009 Luerzer Student Awards for their advertising designs. On the back of all of this success, the
young designers decided to stay in the UK. “At the start, living in the UK was quite different for us, but after some adjustment we really enjoyed living here. We still do,” said Alexandra.
blown away,” said Greg Quinton, Chairman of D&AD. Grazia was similarly complimentary and said: “… it was very innovative and certainly got the office talking!”
Claire Nash from Fareham and Rebecca Gatehouse from Bedford, were also winners of a D&AD Student Award 2009, and they too graduated with BA (Hons) in Graphic Design & Advertising.
Rebecca and Claire both graduated with 2:1 degrees. Claire said: “We recognised in our third year that we were not the most creative students on the course, but our passion for a career in advertising and communications steered us towards marketing, account management and PR. My ambition would be to run my own company in advertising and communications, or become a brand manager for a company like Nike or Apple.”
Claire and Rebecca received an award in the Grazia-sponsored Advertising category for their idea for the Tip Stick, a USB memory stick disguised as a lipstick. “There were over 170 judges, from major brands and creative agencies, so we felt honoured that our work was so well received,” said Claire. Her creative partner, 22 year-old Rebecca, added: “Receiving a D&AD award was something we both aspired to when we started in the first year. With almost 3,000 entries, from 22 countries, we thought it was a long shot!” But their idea impressed the judges: “I challenge anyone not to be simply
Rebecca, meanwhile, decided to talk to advertising and marketing companies. “I knew that the BA (Hons) Graphic Design & Advertising was the course that would help me progress into a great career. My perfect job would be working in the advertising industry as an account handler or planner. Otherwise, I may turn my head to teaching. It’s a big change, but it runs in the family.”
Graduate secures her future Elissabeth Brookes, from West Wycombe, gained a first-class honours degree in International Travel & Tourism Management and managed to secure two posts in the leisure and events sector when she graduated. Originally from Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA, Elissabeth came to the UK in September 2006. With her love of travel and learning about other countries, cultures and languages, she was always destined to pursue a degree in tourism. The BA (Hons) degree at Bucks fitted the bill perfectly and Elissabeth has great memories of the course: “I really enjoyed meeting people from all over the world. There were students from Australia, Poland, Lithuania and Africa. I also really enjoyed my dissertation; it was challenging, interesting and rewarding, and my dissertation advisor, Dr Jenny Briedenhann, was fantastic and so supportive.” After her final exams, Owen Grainger-Jones, senior lecturer in Crowd Safety Management, suggested she apply for a new events co-ordinator position at the University to work on Security Week, a series of four security-themed conferences.
“I have a good idea of how event, crowd safety and security professionals like to communicate and be approached, and I had confidence that Elissabeth would be able to perform at this level for the Security Week events,” said Owen. Multi-talented Elissabeth was also appointed as the new fitness supervisor at the fitness facility in the University’s new state-of-the-art Gateway building. Elissabeth said: “I am a certified personal trainer and have always had an interest in health and fitness. During my final year as a student at Bucks I worked at the Wellesbourne Campus gym as a fitness instructor and really enjoyed the environment and working with members to help them reach their fitness goals. This new position enables me to have even more interaction with the gym members which I find highly rewarding.” Having completed her work as an events co-ordinator on Security Week, Elissabeth began working in The Gateway facility full-time at the end of September. Elissabeth Brookes
Students graduate from Dreams degree Success stories in education are not just about students, sometimes it’s the degree itself that grabs the headlines. Take, for example, the Foundation Degree in Retail Management. The first (Dreams) students graduated last September, and the course has proven to be a real triumph. “It has been a great success for us,” said Suzanne Taylor, resources director at the leading bed specialist. “We are hugely committed to developing and retaining our talented staff, so we approached Bucks New University with the idea to design a bespoke retail-based degree that would offer a structured path of development for our enthusiastic and ambitious staff.” “We fast-tracked the first group of students, all managers at Dreams, to complete the course in one year. This required a huge commitment on the part of the students, Dreams and the University. These successful graduates are already involved in a wide range of projects across the business.” Nick Worthington, CEO of Dreams, added: “Investing in our people is key to the continued success of this business. They are, after all, our most valuable asset. Our first graduates have all proved themselves to be excellent ambassadors for the foundation degree and great role models.” The creation of this two-year degree serves as a case study for other retailers who have an appetite to offer this type of personal development, but are unsure how to integrate it into their business. Lorraine Watkins-Mathys, Head of the School of Business & Management at Bucks said: “Working with Dreams has been brilliant – we have learned a lot from each other and worked together on issues that are relevant to the retail industry in general, but also very specific to Dreams.”
Sennheiser and Focusrite prize winners graduate Six talented prize-winning music production students graduated from Bucks in September. Yulia Lidovskaia, Joe Gabbitas, Justin Culkin and Mike Cook were winners of the Sennheiser Prize for Best Music Production Recording 2008-09, and graduated with BA (Hons) degrees in Music Industry Management & Studio Production. At the same time, Jonathan McPherson and Andre Carayol, winners of the inaugural Focusrite Prize for Best Music Production Recording, graduated with degrees in Audio & Music Production. In 2009, Sennheiser, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems, and Focusrite, a world leader in music processing equipment, introduced these annual awards to recognise what Sennheiser and Focusrite consider to be the best recording produced by graduates.
Phil Cummings, UK Artist Relationship Manager for Sennheiser, said: “It’s been great to be involved with the University; we have lots of plans for this next academic year. It was a real pleasure judging the competition. At Sennheiser we pride ourselves on education and my role in artist relations involves finding new talent to work with, and I’m sure we will be working with these graduates in years to come.” Mike Cook, commented: “The hard work and many hours in the studio successfully paid off with great results! I am very pleased.” Justin Culkin, said: “I’m delighted to receive the award, and would like to give our thanks to the artists and everyone else involved for their invaluable contributions, and without whom it would not have been possible to produce such great tracks.” Yulia Lidovskaia, added: “The award
Sennheiser prize winners with Phil Cummings
came as a surprise, and I am really pleased to have won! Hopefully it will help me to go on to secure a career in music production.” Joe Gabbitas, said: “I am chuffed to bits to win the prize! It’s a big surprise and a great award to have.” Commenting on the judging of the Focusrite competition, Simon Halstead, Focusrite’s UK Marketing Manager, commented: “This was not an easy decision as we felt that the standard of all entrants was very high. Ultimately we came to our decision based on what we felt would achieve current and future commercial success.” For the last five years, Andre has been working with under-privileged youth groups in the London Borough of Brent, by helping them to become involved in music and teaching them how to express themselves through music technology.
He said: “It’s great to receive this award and it has inspired me to continue making music, and in particular, urban music. I would like to channel my skills into using music to help youth communities, as I feel it can have such a positive effect.” Jonathan McPherson, has always had a passion for music and knows what the award means to him: “This award will motivate me to carry on making music as it shows me that people are appreciative and responsive to my style of production. “Being intrigued by many aspects of human existence, I try to portray that through music and lyrics so that what goes on in my head may be understood by others in a form of entertainment.”
Focusrite prize winners with managing director Phil Dudderidge
Supermums graduate Jane Wells
Nasrine Sharif from High Wycombe, overcame health, family and cultural obstacles to achieve her dream and graduate from university. “I left school at the age of 16 with hardly any qualifications,” she said. “I was then forced into an arranged marriage and remained in it for 15 years. Today, I am a single mother with five beautiful children, aged 10 to 18.” It was in 2006 that Nasrine decided to achieve her dream of gaining a university degree. She applied successfully to Bucks to enrol on the BA (Hons) Business Management with Law, and graduated with a 2:1, narrowly missing out on a first by just 1.5 marks.
But it wasn’t all plain sailing as, during her degree, Nasrine required an operation to repair a hole in her heart. That was in addition to a number of family deaths, but she remained resolute in her goal. “I am a proud Muslim woman and proud of my religion and background, but I have always rebelled against what is classed as the ‘norm’. Sadly, in our culture, this includes the woman’s place being in the home. I disagree. I have five beautiful kids, I’m still young, dynamic and very ambitious. I have proven that if you have the dream, desire and passion to do something, it can be achieved.”
Mum of two, Jane Wells from Winslow in North Bucks, juggled her busy life and full-time employment to gain a 2:1 and graduate with a BA (Hons) in Professional Studies from Bucks.
Jill Kemp and Lynn Bouchier
Jane plans to start her own company offering business solutions, and to study further at a later date.
She said: “My mum gained a PhD in Education at the age of 54 and Baldwin has inspired me to keep advancing Jane has worked in the education sector Matthew myself. The degree taught me a lot for over 18 years and has held many about myself and I learned that with posts, in teaching and management motivation, effort and hard work, a lot which enabled her to enroll on a can be achieved in a short space of time top-up course to add to her existing if you put your mind to it. I will certainly qualifications and gain a degree. She continue my education, and, after a completed the course over 12 months break I would like to complete a and found it to be very flexible, fitting in master’s degree.” well with her busy lifestyle. Although it was a work-based learning degree, Jane was able to meet up regularly with fellow colleagues and offer each other advice and support along the way. She has made some good friends during her time as a Bucks student and intends to keep in touch with them.
Inspired by the beautiful game Babajide Fatogun, attended Bucks New University’s first ever National Soccer Summer School in 2004, returned to the University as a student, and went on to graduate with a BSc (Hons) in Sport & Coaching Science. It was five years ago when Babajide, or ‘JJ’, then aged 16, attended the National Soccer Summer School. The aim of the Summer School, the only one of its kind in the country, is to reach school students from non-traditional backgrounds and encourage them to consider university as an option towards a successful career. “I was selected for the Summer School from All Saints Catholic High School,” says JJ, originally from Sheffield. “I really enjoyed meeting people from all over the country, finding out what they wanted to do and what they believed education could do for them. We worked a lot on teamwork and helping others. That was probably the most important thing that I learned,” JJ recalls. “This School inspired me to apply to Bucks New University, and I was accepted onto the BSc (Hons) Sports Science & Coaching Science degree.” JJ is now taking a year out, choosing whether to pursue a master’s in Sports Law or an FA Coaching qualification. JJ has remained friends with several people from that first Summer School, and said: “A few went on to university and one of them is now playing basketball in the USA. When I was at school I did well in sports at GCSE and A-Level, and I was lucky enough to continue along that path to where I am today. It was a great way to learn that I had a brighter future.”
Edinburgh security boss gains MA distinction G4S Events managing director, Mark Hamilton from Edinburgh, was awarded a distinction on the MA in Leadership & Management programme at Bucks, and graduated alongside four G4S colleagues who were awarded Foundation Degrees in Crowd Safety Management. Mark said: “The MA in Leadership & Management was an immensely enjoyable and innovative course, led by Prof Patrick Smith, who, along with the other tutors provided much stimulating debate and direction towards realising the opportunity presented for my own personal and professional development. The course included workshops, and combined with a student cohort from a varied background, generated an interesting learning environment in which relevant subject matter could be applied in the workplace.” Mark previously graduated from Bucks in 2005 as the most outstanding student from the inaugural cohort on the Foundation Degree in Crowd Safety Management, so it was especially pertinent that he graduated in 2009 alongside colleagues, Chris Burr, Nyree Cooper, Karen Ferry and Andrew Kelly who gained the same qualification and followed in his footsteps. In addition, a further 388 G4S Events staff successfully completed their pit safety training course which was delivered by G4S in conjunction with the University. Mark said: “At G4S Events, training is core to our operational success. The qualifications offered by Bucks New University provide a theoretical basis on which students can build their understanding of crowd dynamics and their management and leadership skills. I was delighted to see so many of our staff graduate from Bucks and hope they get as much value from the qualifications as I have.”
Mark has been involved in the security and crowd safety management industry since 1973. He founded Rock Steady Security in 1980, which became one of the UK’s most successful event security and crowd management companies before its acquisition by G4S in 2008. Mark now manages the newly combined G4S Events business, employing over 4,000 personnel providing security, safety, crowd management and training throughout the UK and leads the Global Product initiative for events across all G4S companies in over 110 countries. Mark has commanded many major security and crowd management operations, including the Live 8 events in London and Edinburgh, and continues to be actively involved in events such as T in the Park, V Festival and Download. As a Security Advisor and ‘on the road’ Tour Security Director, Mark has for the past 20 years been responsible for all security-related issues on behalf of Sir Paul McCartney. He has also toured with many artists and is retained as a security advisor to a diverse number of organisations, business leaders, personalities and celebrities. Mark is keenly involved in the development of training and education in the crowd management and event security sector. He is: a part-time lecturer and the Head of the International Centre for Crowd Management & Security Studies at Bucks New University; a Trustee for the Academy of Venue Safety and Security (USA); a Board member for the European Association of Assembly Managers; and a lecturer in security, crowd management and emergency planning, for the European Academy for Venue Safety and Security.
Russell and Anne Harbison
Bucks employee combines work with study Russell Harbison, has achieved a postgraduate degree, having completed the course whilst working as a fulltime employee at Bucks, bringing up a family of four with his wife, Anne, and working as a scout leader in West London. Russell started working at the University in 1990. His roles have been many and varied, and include stints as a lecturer and head of department in the old Technology Faculty, and as the External Relations Manager in the Marketing, Communications & Recruitment Directorate. As Head of Widening Participation and Schools and Colleges Liaison, Russell has been responsible for developing the University’s relationship with schools and colleges in Buckinghamshire and West London, as well as undertaking work with school pupils from across the country. He is also responsible for the recruitment of students from the EU, particularly Poland, working in conjunction with our Polish recruitment partner, Janusz Dargiewicz. The number of Polish students at the University has grown from 12 to well over 100 in the last three years. Russell completed his course, an MA in Leadership & Management, over three and a half years. He said: “I learnt a lot and loved learning from other people on the course. The greatest thing about this institution is the people and the culture, which has been the most inclusive culture I have come across during my career.” Russell graduated alongside the first cohort of Polish students to be recruited through his working relationship with Janusz. Janusz says: “One of ‘our’ students graduated from a psychology course, another from music industry management – she has a band, so she had the musical talent but not the management skills, and this is where the course really helped her. There is no such thing as a music management course in Poland. “One student who did a postgraduate course now has a position as manager at Yo!Sushi in Eden, High Wycombe, and another has already started her own business. We hope to have more successes. Starting at university is always difficult, especially in a different country. Bucks is very helpful especially in that sense; they’re good with helping to find accommodation and helping with all sorts of things. The relationship between Bucks and Polish students is very positive.”
Mark Hamilton and colleagues, Chris Burr, Nyree Cooper, Karen Ferry and Andrew Kelly
Music and Drama Society director graduates The director of Bucks New University’s highly successful Music and Drama Society (MADS), graduated with a BA (Hons) in Creative Writing and Drama. Shaun Condon, from Lewisham in South London, began his studies at Bucks in 2006 where, in his first term, he joined the University’s newly-established drama society as the head of a team of directors. The society was an instant success and gathered a group of enthusiastic, likeminded young people from across the University’s faculties who had a desire to create something special. By the following December, the Music and Drama Society had written and performed a student musical, Loan (a parody of Rent). Soon after the group represented an English student troupe at the Festival d’Hiver, a European student drama festival in Paris which provides student societies from different European countries with the opportunity to perform in front of a new audience. The Bucks students were nominated for several awards and former student, Rachel Price, won the award for Best Actress, for her performance in a piece written by Nicola Radin, and founder of the society, Elizabeth Amisu.
The group managed every aspect of the society, from producing sets and props to funding travel to Paris and the other European destinations in which they performed, and showed tremendous dedication and commitment to reaching their goals. The founders of the society have now graduated and passed on the Music and Drama Society tradition to over 25 other dedicated Bucks students, as well as the various technical crew members and design teams.
Shaun went on to work with North London based theatre group, nineteen; twentynine, and hopes to establish a theatre company of his own later in his career. He said: “The Music and Drama Society was an important part of my university life, where I met some incredible and talented people. “As a director, it was a lot of work and quite time-consuming, fitting it around the schedule of lectures, employment and the university social life, but after three years I can say it was definitely worth it. I doubt that I would have enjoyed my time at university as much if I hadn’t become part of something bigger and gained a few experiences from it, which were truly rewarding.” Founder of the society, Elizabeth Amisu, who graduated in 2008 and is now a lecturer of English at Essex University, commented: “A few years ago I embarked on a mammoth journey with a group of the most dynamic, innovative people I have ever known. We were fresh-faced and naive, completely positive that anything we wanted to do, we could and the best part of it was, we accomplished more than we dreamed. “The Bucks New University Music and Drama Society performed spectacularly on a European stage; we represented our country, infused our performances with everything that made us ourselves, and we looked pretty good doing it. The sense of adventure, that learning can be exciting and unpredictable, that it is dynamic and grows with you, is one I carry into all of my lessons, and teach all of my students. In many ways I’m grateful to the MADS for that.”
Aviation graduate is ﬂying high Scott Bourke, from Bracknell, was one of the first students to graduate from Bucks, having completed the Bucks New University and Oxford Aviation Academy (OAA) Foundation Degree in Air Transport Management with Airline Pilot Training. “As long as I can remember I’ve wanted to become an airline pilot. Much of my life was spent around aircraft because of my father’s work,” said Scott, aged 21. Foundation degrees are designed to give students the necessary skills to help them fit perfectly into the world of work. In 2008, Bucks New University and Oxford Aviation Academy (OAA) formed a partnership to introduce this innovative and unique new course, and Scott was one of its very first students. The programme was developed to provide newly-qualified airline pilots with a Foundation Degree in Air Transport Management, thus increasing their understanding of the industry and helping them to become more employable. Scott said: “As well as wanting to be an airline pilot, I also wanted to do a degree, so I could see this course’s potential. I knew it would increase my understanding of the industry as a whole, which would make me even more employable.” Since graduating Scott has already secured employment as a first officer, and is in the airline hold pool of a large, low-cost airline. He particularly liked the way the degree was designed in conjunction with the airlines that students could go on to work for. He said: “As well as the core flying disciplines, it helps to identify everything that needs to be done to get a passenger aircraft ready for flight.” The quality and reputation of OAA’s training is recognised worldwide, with over 20,000 pilots and engineers passing through its doors. Scott, however, is one of the first to walk away with a Bucks Foundation Degree under his belt. The degree ran at the same time as the students’ demanding commercial and instrument pilot licence training, taking 68 weeks to complete. It was a highpressure and hard-working environment, but Scott saw the benefits of doing it all at the same time. “The toughest part of my training was the instrument rating test. But thanks to the help and empathy of my flight instructor, I was able to pass it at the first attempt,” he said.
Never too old to gain a degree Life is one long adventure, and Tony Hobbs continues his at the youthful age of 71. Tony graduated with a BA (Hons) in Creative Arts from Bucks after following a course of study at the Open College of the Arts (OCA). The course took roughly eight years of study, because Tony was a busy man in that time: “Whilst studying I wrote a number of walking and local history books, which have been published. The last one, Not All Little Angels, is actually about my childhood memories of Henley-on-Thames. It is my eighth book,” says Tony. Tony, who grew up in Henley-onThames during the 1940s, left school at the age of 16 just after taking his GCE O-levels as his father could no longer afford Tony’s education. Instead he needed to find a job, and this led to a career in journalism and then public relations. It stimulated a huge interest in the written word.
“I often thought how nice it would have been to go to university and obtain a degree,” Tony recalls. “When I retired, I decided to join the OCA and improve my writing skills. The more I persevered with the course, the more the possibility of gaining a degree came about. So in a way it’s a dream come true and, as they say, better late than never.” Tony retired to the small village of Dilwyn, in north Herefordshire, and it was from here that he took the correspondence course. Now, with a degree to his name, he has a busy future ahead of him: “I’m working on three more books: The Pubs of Malvern, The Pubs of Worcester and a biography of King Offa, as well as a number of plays and short stories,” he said.
Dancers gain MA distinctions Dancers, Lynn Bouchier from Papworth Everard near Cambridge, and Jill Kemp from Milton Keynes, gained distinctions for their work on the MA in Leadership & Management at Bucks and graduated in the presence of family and friends. Lynn, 56, is a former British, European and International Latin American dance champion. The first member of her family to become a professional dancer, she left school at 18 to concentrate on her dance career and went on to represent Great Britain in Latin American dance when she was just 19. Lynn is now a professional dance teacher with her own school of dance and is also an IDTA (International Dance Teachers Association) examiner.
qualification in dance teaching, she helped to develop the Foundation Degree in Dance Teaching, a qualification which she then studied before graduating alongside her friend, Lynn, in 2006. The Foundation Degree inspired Jill to go to the next level and she began her master’s qualification soon afterwards.
in many aspects of my business, and in particular with one of my main objectives which is to encourage children form socially deprived backgrounds to take part in dance. Researching this was the subject of my dissertation, and the findings have helped me to develop a plan for achieving my goal in the future.”
Jill said: “You’re never too old to start higher education. My studies gave me a real focus at the right time in my life and I enjoyed it all. I knew that the MA in Leadership & Management would help me further
Both Lynn and Jill are now part-time lecturers on the Foundation Degree in Dance Teaching at Bucks, in addition to their own dance teaching and examining commitments.
Jill Kemp and Lynn Bouchier
Having missed the opportunity to go to university when she was younger, Lynn returned to education in 2006 and completed a Foundation Degree in Dance Teaching at Bucks. Soon after she began her master’s qualification and has studied for this alongside her teaching commitments. Lynn said: “I loved every minute of going back to education as a mature student. Bucks New University is at the forefront of teaching dance due to its strong relationship with the IDTA which has led to the introduction of a far broader group of qualifications for dance teaching. Tony Hobbs The support from all staff at Bucks was fantastic, and in particular the team on the master’s programme who were extremely supportive of mature students. Work-based learning can be a lonely business but the speedy feedback and guidance from all tutors made this a great experience. “I would now like to do something to inspire others to take this path and this qualification, and am hoping to do more work in higher education and to use the knowledge gained on the programme. Maybe dancers don’t have all their brains in their feet!” Jill Kemp, 51, is respected throughout the dance industry having won a Carl Alan Award in the Freestyle dance category in 2006 for her work over the years. Known as ‘the Oscars of the dance world’, the Carl Alan Awards honour people who have made a significant contribution to the industry, such as teachers, performers and choreographers. Jill is also a professional dance teacher and has her own school of dance, and is an IDTA examiner, having examined dancers both in the UK and abroad.
Jill, who is married to Prof Chris Kemp, Pro Vice Chancellor at Bucks, left school after her A-levels to begin her dance teaching career. Higher education wasn’t the direction she wanted to take at the time, and so she waited until the opportunity arose at Shaun Condon the right stage in her life to return to her studies. ussell and Anne Harbison Recognising the need for a business-related
Tatenda and Douglas Makurumure
Tatenda and Douglas Makurumure
Slough couple graduate together Changing careers is never easy, and doing so when you have three teenage children is harder still. But that was the goal that Tatenda and Douglas Makurumure from Slough set themselves, before graduating from Bucks New University. After 15 years teaching primary school children at Seki 6 Primary School in Zimbabwe, Tatenda realised that nursing was her true calling and, at the age of 40, she applied to Bucks to enrol on a Diploma in Mental Health Nursing. “After migrating from Zimbabwe, I worked as a mental health support worker. I wanted to study mental illness and understand what made people unwell and how they were looked after,” says Tatenda. “Switching career wasn’t an easy decision, in fact it was one of the hardest I ever made.” Her husband, Douglas, made a similar decision at the same time, and gave up his career as an accounting officer. He completed his BSc (Hons) in Nursing at Bucks, and is now working at Ealing Hospital. With three teenagers at home it was a challenging time for the family, and with both parents studying it was also difficult financially, but it was more than worth it and the hard work is paying off. Tatenda graduated with a Diploma and started work at Prospect Park Hospital in Reading as a staff nurse, and in less than a year found herself working in the community as a community psychiatric nurse (CPN). She said: “My training at Bucks made me a well-rounded, balanced mental health nurse. The training I had and the lecturers and placement advisers I met were a real inspiration. It was a great achievement for me and now I can concentrate on a new career.” Their eldest son, Kuda James, was accepted by Kingston University to study Sports Science and Business Management - the desire to study is clearly a family affair.
Talented young designer graduates
Young designer, Matthew Baldwin, graduated with a BA (Hons) in Contemporary Furniture & Related Product Design, with a design prize already to his name. In his first year at Bucks, Matthew was the winner of a design competition organised by innovative social enterprise, StreetShine, which gives disadvantaged people a chance to step up into regular employment by becoming professional shoe shiners serving top firms and hotels in London. StreetShine invited Bucks students to design a shoe shiner’s box, and Matthew won first prize with his highly sculptured yet practical, portable design. His concept was manufactured during his final year and there are now 20 shoe-shine boxes in use by StreetShine shiners working across London. Matthew, from Needham Market, Suffolk, said: “My plans for the future are to be a successful furniture designer and to work with inspirational people. I think StreetShine’s work is very valuable and integral in helping people get back into work, and I’m pleased to have helped in some way. The experience was valuable and helped me understand the work that goes into manufacturing a product. Also I was really pleased to be able to use my skills to aid a charitable organisation.”
The beat goes on for Hazlemere PCSO Daton Daton Beckford is one of Bucks New University’s first student Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and he graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Police Studies with Criminal Investigation. Daton, from Hackney, East London, was one of the first cohort of Bucks students to take part in a revolutionary work-based learning scheme involving the training of police studies degree students to work as part-time PCSOs with Thames Valley Police, as part of their undergraduate studies. At his graduation, Daton also received a special award from Thames Valley Police for outstanding dedication and commitment, throughout the duration of the course. Looking back, Daton, who has dyslexia, says: “Back in school, I didn’t think university was a possibility.” Ever since his careers advisor convinced him otherwise, that has all changed. Once he’d set his heart on a police studies degree, he chose Bucks for its highly-regarded policing, criminology and forensics teaching, and when he was accepted onto the course, things got even better:
“The University and Thames Valley Police formed a new partnership, which gave me the chance to become a part-time PCSO. I was trained in areas like neighbourhood policing, race equality and health and safety. I worked 16 hours a week and it was a great feeling to be recognised in the area I patrolled and to know that I made a difference.” After two years as a PCSO, both his degree and training have been of great use. He has faced numerous situations that required his skills as he walked the beat in Hazlemere. Daton said: “Late one Saturday, I was called to an incident. When I arrived I had three parties to deal with - the offender, the victim and several members of the public. Everyone was arguing and shouting and I needed all my communication skills to stop further offences being committed while I called for back-up. I kept the offender detained, and safe from angry residents, and I believe my contribution was a key factor in resolving the dispute to everybody’s satisfaction. “My ambition is to become a police dog handler and to return to Hackney so I can police there. Thanks to this degree I know I have a good chance of achieving that goal. It was the best choice I ever made.”