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INSIDEUCS Issue 3, Autumn 2011

FEATURING n The School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise n Suffolk Access Champion Scheme n This years Honorary Graduates announced

Putting UCS on the map


Welcome Contents News Round Up Hot Topic School Feature

Message from the Provost 3-4 5 6-7

Visiting Academics Supplement Research and Enterprise


Academic Development


UCS Students


UCS Staff


Events Guide


Talk to us Get in touch and tell us what you think of INSIDEUCS. We want to hear your views on the latest issue and find out what you would like to see in the next INSIDEUCS due in the winter. An online copy can be found at or on the Wolsey intranet site available to all current UCS staff and students. We hope you enjoy reading the latest issue of INSIDEUCS and look forward to hearing your views.

I am delighted that the academic gravitas of UCS continues to grow through high level appointments. Over the past few months we have been joined by Professor David Weir, as Head of the School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise and a range of other high profile senior staff. Meanwhile, as will be apparent in the Supplement to this issue, we have now recruited over fifty Visiting Professors and Visiting Senior Fellows at UCS, many of whom have world-leading profiles. I am also pleased to say that our academic star continues to rise in other ways. Validation from the Universities of East Anglia and Essex has now been achieved enabling us to recruit postgraduate research students across a range of academic areas. Student applications to UCS are still growing at a faster rate than the national average and a further significant increase in recruitment is envisaged for 2011/12. The results of the 2011 National Student Survey (NSS) conducted amongst final-year students have also recently been declared. These show that the percentage of students satisfied with their education at UCS has improved from last year and that some three quarters of students now say that they are satisfied. To move as far as we have towards the national average of just over four fifths of students being satisfied in the NSS as a new institution competing with more established universities is an achievement given the major changes that have occurred at UCS over the past year in developing a Strategic Plan and reorganising academic and non-academic structures at the Ipswich Hub – in addition to ongoing building work to create a more attractive estate. However, more focus is required on action planning for the NSS across Schools and Directorates, particularly in the context of the Higher Education White Paper which is also covered in this issue. This will make for greater competition amongst institutions in 2012, with significantly raised tuition fees and increased student data transparency. Achieving a better outcome in the next NSS will be made easier with the James Hehir Building now fully up and running, a new 200-seat Auditorium in the Waterfront Building, significant improvements to the northern flank of the Ipswich Hub, and a range of investments in infrastructure around the UCS Learning Network. We shall also be helped in NSS 2012 by the implementation of a new Student Charter, the further work of the Student Experience Committee with representation from staff and students, and the development of the Infozone – a one-stop shop for students. In all this, it is vital that UCS staff continue to work with students and our highly valued local, national and international partners to make UCS the great higher education institution it deserves to be. Professor Mike Saks Provost and Chief Executive UCS

insideUCS Issue 3 Autumn 2011


News Round Up UCS Academy

Professor Brendan Noble and Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne in the James Hehir laboratory

This autumn will see the launch of the UCS Academy. The idea behind the UCS Academy is to promote the research culture of UCS, raise the profile of the organisation and form favourable relationships with key individuals and companies within the region, as well as extending our reach to the local community and wider public audience. The Academy will consist of a series of events – namely insightful lectures from both resident and visiting professors on subjects as diverse as ‘The Poetry of Management’ from Professor David Weir to ‘Right Place – Wrong Patient’ from Professor Michael Calnan. Lectures will take place each month between 17.30 and 19.30. All staff are very welcome to attend. The full programme and registration details will be advertised on the UCS website. For further information, please contact:

Chancellor visits UCS UCS welcomed Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne to the Ipswich Campus over the summer for a guided tour of the new biotechnology laboratories located in the recently opened James Hehir Building. The Chancellor paid tribute to the developments and in particular the research being undertaken by UCS which he believes is “the kind of new industry that is going to help drive the British economy forward.” The tour was led by Professor Brendon Noble, Head of the School of Science, Technology and Health at UCS. Professor Noble is leading research at UCS into the development of stem cell-derived chondrocytes for the treatment of cartilage damage and joint disease. The development programme is being run in collaboration with California based biotechnology research giants, the Geron Corporation. Professor Noble said: “Mr Osborne’s visit was a very positive signal that our approach to translating science into commercially useful products is of interest on a UK level. We are very grateful to the Chancellor for taking time to visit and discuss our plans to develop strong academic and industry partnerships. This regenerative medicine research and development work underpins our training programmes in regenerative medicine and the biosciences, all of which represent exciting opportunities to develop skills here in Suffolk for use worldwide.”

Biotechnology research at UCS is aimed at developing new medicines for difficult to treat diseases and medical conditions. Taught courses within the biosciences cover topics such as the biology of ageing, nutrition and health, tissue regeneration, bio entrepreneurship and the business aspects of making new medicines.

The Estates Masterplan After extensive consultation, UCS now has an updated Estates Strategy and Masterplan which has been signed off by the UCS Executive and the UCS Board. This updating work, based on a much-needed revision of the 2008 Masterplan, has been taken forward over the past academic year. The focus of

the Masterplan is on the Ipswich Hub, which is considered in the context of the wider Learning Network. The Masterplan begins by examining the character of the estate and the legal constraints – noting the potential for future growth. It then highlights the importance of carbon reduction, the need to serve users and to engage in tighter space management. Finally, it emphasises the future benefits of focusing future development around the Waterfront while retaining connectivity with Suffolk New College through the Ipswich Educational Quarter. As such, it is a critical document in defining estates priorities linked to the UCS Strategic Plan.

Dr Ann Williams Gains OBE

Those being awarded are: n June Brown n Gary Avis n Celia Anderson n Simon Clegg n Terry Hunt n William Kendall n Dr Akmal Makhdum n Yvonne Mason n Nigel Pickover

Changes to the UCS Board

Dr Ann Williams

West Suffolk College Principal Dr Ann Williams has been awarded an OBE for services to further education in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list. She had already worked at the College for over twenty years when she took over as Principal in 2002. Under her leadership, the College has embarked on a multi-million pound redevelopment programme, won an Outstanding grading from Ofsted inspectors, been awarded Beacon status as an example of excellence in teaching and learning, and been selected as one of the Best 100 Companies to Work For. Ann started at West Suffolk College as a part-time lecturer, before becoming Lecturer in Liberal Studies. After maternity leave, she returned as Certificate of PreVocational Education Co-ordinator before moving into management. In 1990 she was promoted to the Senior Management Team. For seven years from 1995, she was Director of Curriculum and Quality. In 2006 Dr Williams was chosen as one of four finalists for the title of East of England Businesswoman of the Year. Dr Williams said: “I have always loved working for West Suffolk College and I really believe in teachers being able to make a positive impact on people’s lives.” Dr Ann Williams also sits on the UCS board as a Learning Network representative.

Honorary Graduates announced This autumn UCS students will graduate in formal ceremonies held across Suffolk and in Great Yarmouth. UCS is looking forward to recognising the students’ achievements and welcoming them to these official ceremonies. As part of the formality of graduation, UCS will also welcome a number of notable individuals to the ceremonies to present them with Honorary Awards – either Honorary Doctorates or Honorary Fellowships.

Professor Edward Acton, Vice Chancellor at the University of East Anglia, has now taken over as Chair of the UCS Board from Professor Colin Riordan, Vice Chancellor at the University of Essex, as part of the rotational cycle. Professor Riordan will be moving to the position of Vice Chancellor at Cardiff University from September 2012. Many thanks should be expressed to him for the guidance to UCS that he has provided as Chair both inside and outside the Board. Professor Edward Acton

Tony Rich has also now left his post as Registrar at the University of Essex to take up a parallel role at the University of Bristol. Tony has been a long-term supporter of UCS and we pass on our best wishes to him for the future. He will be replaced on the UCS Board by his successor Bryn Morris from the Institute of Education in London who will shortly be taking up post and to whom we extend a warm welcome.

Successful Health and Safety Training Health and safety remains a priority for UCS. Following the successful introduction of a one day Health and Safety managers training course, 39 people have attended one of the four courses which have run so far this year. The response from managers has been very positive and as a result further courses will run in the winter. Fire training has also proved popular with the 31 staff trained this year on how to prevent fires and respond in an emergency, including how to fight a fire using an extinguisher.

Hot Topic


insideUCS Issue 3 Autumn 2011


The Higher Education White Paper The long-awaited Higher Education White Paper entitled Higher Education: Students at the Heart of the System was finally released at the end of June 2011. It sets out proposals for consultation on the reform of higher education in England and will undoubtedly have a substantial impact on the whole sector – including UCS. Its formal aim is to improve financial sustainability and to deliver higher education that is more responsive to student choice, provides a better student experience and helps improve social mobility. It follows on from the earlier establishment towards the end of last year of a new system of higher education funding from 2012/13, based on the principles that no first-time undergraduate has to pay fees up front and that graduates pay a portion of their salary towards their educational costs once they are earning over

£21,000. Pleasingly, as a result, many part-time and distance learning students will become entitled to tuition loans to cover tuition costs. This package is also helpful in facilitating increased tuition fees up to £9,000 at universities in England. At UCS these have been set at £8,000 for Honours degrees and £7,500 for Foundation degrees, together with a widening participation and retention package based on an Access Agreement. This should enable UCS to bid for the flexible margin of around 20,000 places to reward institutions whose average tuition charge (after fee waivers) is at or below £7,500 and which combine good quality and value for money – as well as to participate in the recruitment beyond the student number cap of the anticipated 65,000 AAB grade or better students.

As part of the new market in higher education set out in the White Paper, students will have access to much more individual course information at institutions. They will also be able to benefit from increased central maintenance grants and loans – as well as a National Scholarship Programme. Together, it is envisaged that these will further enhance widening participation and make higher education more responsive to student choice. This presages a more competitive higher education system with new providers able to enter the fray. In this new environment, UCS will clearly need to position itself as strongly as possible in terms of the student experience in order to grow further, in line with its Strategic Plan.

School Feature


School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise The School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise has recently seen the appointment of a new Head of School, Professor David Weir. Professor Weir has had an extraordinarily successful academic career and a highly successful track record in establishing and developing Business Schools across the country, which has included leading four university Business Schools. Professor Weir has also been Chair of the Association of Business Schools (UK) and is a Visiting Professor for numerous universities including Lancaster University, one of the most highly rated Management Schools in the UK, and the University of Lincoln with which UCS has strong links. He has also been a Senior Enterprise Fellow at the University of Essex. His experience, including initiating the very first part-time executive MBA in a university business school in Britain, creating strong suites of programmes in the international market, developing entrepreneurship and small business support programmes, and building a doctoral and staff publication tradition, will be pivotal to his role at UCS. We spoke to Professor David Weir to find out about the developments within the School and his plans for the future. He commented: “Over the next few years we plan to validate and offer new Masters programmes to meet market demands and grow the existing postgraduate provision, in particular developing the full-time and Executive MBA to build on the research work already being undertaken. We will also look to develop our research and knowledge transfer profile in areas such as energy, green and rural economies. “In due course we intend to become full participating members of the relevant professional bodies including CCMI, CIM, ABS, EFMD and AACSB, as well as obtaining UCS School accreditation via the relevant national and international bodies in our own right. To these ends we are working with the international recruitment team to ensure the BA (Hons) Business Management and MBA offerings are attractive and accessible to international students. We are also in the process of identifying key strengths so that, for example, every member of our School has specialist knowledge and contacts in at least one international domain.”

Professor David Weir

“In addition, we are building on our strong foundations in enterprise – for example with ‘Enterprise Tuesdays’ – and aim to develop CPD taster sessions and ‘Working Breakfasts’, as well as participating in more local activities and supplying more regular information to the local and national media.” “Overall, our fundamental goal is to provide a high quality student experience, with the highest standard of teaching learning and assessment. On this basis we plan to introduce targeted courses for particular sectors of the local and regional markets. We will build community links, whether in rural, urban, portal, technical, military or the arts and creative sectors, and will target specific business, gender-based and ethnic demographics. As a result, we will need to work closely with other UCS Schools to increase our product range, attack new markets, offer new services and create new knowledge areas – in addition to developing relationships with relevant communities, to build our profile and become more responsive to their interests.” “Finally, we will continue to work in close partnership with the Universities of East Anglia and Essex, meeting regularly and participating more often and fully in research, teaching and community activities, where necessary with UCS taking the lead.”

insideUCS Issue 3 Autumn 2011

MBA UCS has a highly regarded MBA Programme that celebrates its twentieth anniversary next year. The MBA encourages students to immediately apply new techniques and knowledge gained an immediate payback for employers - and to respond creatively and effectively to the challenges presented by a global business environment. MBA graduates are proven to earn more and have more choices in the employment market. The MBA at UCS this year has seen students add to the community through projects, volunteering and charity work. UCS students undertaking the MBA this year assisted Families in Need (FIND) - a Christian based charity that provides emergency assistance to families or individuals affected by poverty or dispossession who have been struggling in the economic climate.

The students were approached and asked if they would use their business skills to increase food donations and the number of volunteers for the organisation. The students happily accepted the challenge and began undertaking a critical analysis of FIND’s current strategic position, to identify a zero-budget marketing strategy, as a means of gaining more and better support. The MBA programme is distinctive, practical and academic and with the impressive team of Visiting Professors and practising managers there are plenty of opportunities to explore many aspects of current management issues. As the MBA continues to flourish the School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise look forward to celebrating its anniversary next year.

Professor David Weir, Alison Pawsey, Shaun Bailey

Jade Thompson, UCS student and staff member, told us what her course means to her:

“The FdA Leadership and Management programme is providing me with valuable skills that I can apply directly to the workplace. I am learning so much on both a personal and professional level and I hope that this will support my career development.”


Course News n A  busy and exciting year! The Event, Tourism, Hospitality and Leisure Team are taking stock of the past year’s activities and are preparing for an exciting year ahead. There have been numerous highlights during 2010/11 including projects and activities undertaken by enthusiastic and proactive students and the team are hoping for many more of these activities to come.

n B  usiness and Leadership Bachelor courses in Business and Leadership offer a high quality alternative to local students for whom rising fees are a potential issue, allowing them to live at home while studying, as in much of Europe. Suffolk is a county of SMEs (Small and Medium Sized Enterprises) and the School has a clear focus on courses and activities which support SMEs to improve their business management skills – offering Masters level courses for managers and working closely with local employers to offer internships to UCS students. The Foundation degree sponsored by the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce is a successful example of this approach.

n W  orking with Local Employers The School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise works alongside local employers to offer short courses and customised training to suit them. Current examples include developments with British Telecom to suit staff from apprentice level up, as well as work carried out with Willis and Jacob Bailey to develop a new MA in Marketing. In addition, many of the School’s students are active in the community – for example with local councils, charities or arts venues, benefitting Suffolk at the same time as continuing their studies.

Research and Development


Research and Enterprise Graduate School A new Graduate School area has been developed on the first floor of the James Hehir building to complement the workspace recently refurbished for postgraduate students in the library. The Graduate School will be offering a full programme of support for postgraduate research students from the start of the 2011/12 academic year. This will include workshops on practical research skills and sessions tackling broader topics in conducting research such as presentation skills, time management, computer skills for research, and writing up theses, as well as sessions focusing on employability and job skills. In addition, students will be able to access workshops held at the Universities of East Anglia and Essex.

Research Funding Dr Emma Bond and Jessica Clark from the School of Applied Social Sciences have recently secured research funding from the Nominet Trust to support an online ethnographic study of websites that promote anorexia. In addition to raising awareness of such sites and the impact that they can have, this important project will be used to highlight future opportunities for research in this area. Dr Will Thomas is contributing to a major study of the role that further education colleges play in the delivery of higher education in England, focusing in particular on aspects of delivery which may be unique or which fill gaps in the provision provided by higher education institutions. This study is funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and is run by the University of Sheffield and the Institute of Education in London. Following successful bidding, Dr Penny Cavenagh and Dr Olivia Sagan have been awarded funding by Anglia Care Trust to undertake independent research into the unmet advocacy needs of socially excluded groups and communities within Suffolk, on behalf of the Suffolk Advocacy Forum. The findings will describe the changing face and demographics of such groups in Suffolk and help Suffolk Advocacy Forum develop its activities, target gaps in service and improve its advocacy training provision. In the School of Arts and Humanities, Elsa Bradley is working on a Department of Health funded project with Youth Dance England and the University of Bedfordshire, looking at the effects of creative dance on physical health and psychological well being among 10-12 year olds in the Eastern region.

Conferences and Seminars Professor Mike Saks gave a keynote address on ‘Power and Professionalization in CAM: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives’ at a Conference on Regulation and Professionalization in Complementary and

The new Graduate School

Alternative Medicine held at the University of Birmingham in May 2011. He also presented a keynote on ‘Professions, Self-interest and the Public Interest: Conceptual and Empirical Challenges’ at a Portuguese Sociological Association Conference on Work, Organisations and Professions at the University of Porto in July 2011. Tim Goodchild, Senior Lecturer in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, and Dr Emma Bond, Senior Lecturer in the School of Applied Social Sciences, have recently completed an ethnographic study exploring staff perceptions and experiences of using technology in learning and teaching. They presented their findings at the 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies in Barcelona in July 2011. Caroline Wojcik-Gammell from the School of Science, Technology and Health spoke at the Annual Radiotherapy Conference on ‘Delivering the Clinical Components of Education; Roles and Responsibilities of Clinical Radiographers’. At the 16th Annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science in Liverpool, Dr Mandy Gault from the same School presented a poster on ‘Whether Regular Level and Downhill Treadmill Walking at Self-selected Speed Improves Functional Performance of Older Adults.’ Professor David Weir, Head of the School of Business, Leadership and Enterprise, gave three sole/joint authored papers at the prestigious Annual Academy of Management Conference at San Antonio in Texas in August 2011. These were on the following topics: ‘What Can the West Learn from the Middle East?’, ‘Factors Influencing Women’s Employment Status in Jordan’ and ‘Understanding the Careers of Professional Migrants: A Local-Global Dynamic’.

Enterprise Enterprise initiatives are gaining momentum across UCS. The School of Midwifery and Nursing has been engaged in generating

insideUCS Issue 3 Autumn 2011

National Student Survey The National Student Survey (NSS) score for UCS in 2011 has increased by 3% since 2010 to 74% - with the percentage satisfaction for first degrees at 78%, up by 8% compared to last year. Teaching was a particular strength with an average of 81% of students satisfied, rising to 100% on some courses. We are therefore coming closer to the current national average of 83% for overall satisfaction in the NSS - with higher than average subject profiles in areas such as fine art, history and radiography.

the most effective Re-usable Learning Objects for a funded project from Foundation Degree Forward. The Re-usable Learning Objects covered the topics of Service Improvement, Engaging Service Users and Interprofessional Working. They were designed by staff at UCS in conjunction with practice partners and service users, and were disseminated to other institutions offering Health and Social Care Foundation degrees. The School of Science, Technology and Health, supported by Suffolk County Council and the East of England Development Agency, has raised £500,000 grant funding to enable the development of a Biotechnology Unit in the new James Hehir Building. The funding has facilitated the purchase of state-of-the-art scientific equipment within the Biotechnology Unit. The equipment will provide a platform for current research and future research funding bids.

Leadership Funding has been secured and a new raft of courses and organisational development interventions are planned for the 2011/12 Suffolk Leadership Academy programme. These have all been developed, and will be delivered, by the Leadership Academy in conjunction with the NHS, Visiting Professors/Senior Fellows, expert trainers and facilitators. This year’s programme includes a focus on board and executive team development, including work to support and challenge the top teams at the various NHS organisations in Suffolk - as well as a pilot of ‘Coaching for Clinicians’. This aims to help any leaders who have direct contact with patients to learn coaching skills that they can apply to patients and colleagues.

Further analysis of the results and dissemination of good practice will now occur through the Office of Academic Development, with a view to further enhancement in NSS 2012. This will be based on close working between the Office and the UCS Schools and Directorates. It will also involve joint working with students, including UCS Union.

QAA Report Mark Lyne, Head of Quality Enhancement in the Office of Academic Development at UCS, wrote a high profile paper for the QAA on student engagement earlier in the year that has now been published on their website. The main focus of the report, based on 76 institutional audits, is how UK higher education is facilitating wider student participation. It details how universities have recognised the need for an active student voice and can be accessed at: PressReleases/Pages/outcomes-audit.aspx

Teaching and Learning Day As part of the implementation of the new UCS Teaching and Learning Strategy agreed by the UCS Executive, a Teaching and Learning Day for staff was held on the 8 July 2011, organised by the Office of Academic Development. Feedback on the event indicated that attendees generally found it very useful, and felt the day had gone well. The keynote speech by Professor Mike Neary, Visiting Professor at UCS who has recently spearheaded a major national funding council project involving several leading universities on Learning Landscapes, was challenging and thought provoking. Other sessions explored current UCS developments and work by academic staff examining teaching and learning. During the event the Graduate Headstart programme was launched which features facilities to enable the recording and reporting of personal development activities for students within an e-portfolio system.

Academic Development

Academic Development



UCS Students UCS Union elect new President and Vice President

UCS welcome thousands of students to Higher Education Convention

Jonathan Wright and Sam Bennett

Damian Ulysses

Jonathan Wright and Sam Bennett are the new UCS Union President and Vice President. Over the next year, UCS Union will be running a variety of events and campaigns for all students to get involved with. To find out more visit the UCS Union website www.UCSunion. com or find them on Facebook and Twitter.

Introducing the UCS Student Charter UCS and UCS Union have worked together to develop a new Student Charter. UCS is committed to being a student-centred higher education institution that strives to provide its students with the highest standards in teaching and learning, as well as high quality support and advice. The UCS Student Charter demonstrates this commitment, outlining what students can expect from staff at UCS, as well as what can be reasonably expected in return. The Charter has been developed by the Student Experience Committee and approved by the Academic Board and the Executive Team, and will be kept under annual review via the Annual Academic Report to the Joint Academic Committee of the Universities of East Anglia and Essex. It is available to download from the website studentcharter and Wolsey and printed copies have been distributed around campus.

Online album to raise money for MS A student on the FdA Music Production course at UCS Bury St Edmunds has been working on the score for a film that deals with the subject of Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Sebastian YoungerWatson (known professionally as Damian Ulysses) is releasing a single from the soundtrack online, and will give any profits to the UK Multiple Sclerosis Society charity fund. Damian aims to place the MS soundtrack album on two websites, Zimbalam and iTunes, in August.

The single will be distributed through iTunes and Pledge Music. Any profits made from the single, as well as a share of the profits from the album, will be given to the MS Society charity fund.

Access course leads to degree study at UCS Bury St Edmunds A woman who left school at 16 and took the opportunity to earn and travel has come back to study as a mature student and earned a university place to study for an Honours degree. Sarah Watson, 37, from Feltwell, was among 64 students who successfully completed an Access to Higher Education Diploma Literature, History and Social Science at West Suffolk College in July. Sarah said: “I am so happy. Now I have completed the Access course, the sky is the limit.” Sarah has been an inspiration to her family and friends. Two women in her village are considering signing up on the Access to Higher Education course next year, thinking ‘if Sarah can do it so can we!’

Taste of the big apple for photography students A group of UCS photography and graphic design students are hosting an exhibition in the Foyer of the UCS Waterfront Building until 16 October. The work on display was created during a student trip to New York in June, in response to the city and to former UCS Photography lecturer Heike Löwenstein’s exhibition, Surveys of a Small Island, which was on show at the time. The group of 11 students were tasked with responding to the theme of the New York exhibition by producing their own surveys of the ‘small island’.

Over 3,000 students from across the region converged on the UCS Waterfront Building in Ipswich in June for the third annual Suffolk Higher Education Convention. Students attended the event with their Sixth Form or College to find out more about their options post further education. The event featured over 100 higher education representatives which included universities from across the country and Student Finance England. Students were also able to attend a range of seminars to get advice on how to apply, how to choose a university or course, taking a gap year and a talk from Student Finance England on the new fees system and maintenance support.

Graphic Design students put talent on show The Graphic Design show at UCS Bury St Edmunds in June showcased a range of outstanding work from areas including advertising, publishing, branding and packaging. Everyone who attended the private view was unanimous in their praise for the exceptionally high standard of work produced by this year’s The Graphic Design cohort. Stimulating work by show, Bury St Edmunds students on the BA (Hons) Graphic Communication and FdA Graphic Design generated a real buzz of excitement among visitors to the show.

First class degree in civil engineering for UCS student Congratulations to Louise Hall, who recently graduated from UCS at Suffolk New College with a first class degree in civil engineering. Louise chose to stay at home and study part-time which enabled her to pursue an exciting career, at the same time as getting a good education and keeping her debts low. She began her path through higher education with a Foundation Degree in Civil Engineering, studying one day a week for three years, before progressing onto the Honours Degree course for a further two years of part-time study. Studying in this way gave Louise the opportunity to gain five years of practical work experience to support the theory learnt during her degree, as well as the less tangible benefits such as building confidence, improving time management and organisational skills and developing a greater understanding of the work environment.

insideUCS Issue 3 Autumn 2011

UCS Staff Hellos… UCS welcomes the appointment of Claudio Marelli as Head of Division of Technology in the School of Science, Technology and Health and Carol Brown as Head of Division of Art and Design in the School of Arts and Humanities – with Professor David Gill arriving shortly as the new Head of Division of Humanities.

... and Goodbyes UCS would like to wish Robert Comber, Marc O’Day, Elizabeth WagnerDempster, Cherie Sycamore, Frances Webb, Richard Lait, Ellinor Degory, Kevin Charlton, David Pier, Deidre Griffin, Derek Dauphin, Heike Lowenstein, Sarah Halliwell, Lesley Maynard, Susan Baxter, Helen Full, Anne Cockcroft, Michael Irwin, Bronwyn Betts, David Pescod, David Hunt, Richard Farrar, Adrian Budgen, Glenys Clayden, Barbara Horsman, Susanne Cone, Dominik Jackson-Cole, Julian Illman, Janet Smith the best of luck in the future having recently left their roles at UCS.

Staff Suggestion Scheme Over the last year, through ideas from the staff suggestion scheme we have added value to business engagement, the student experience, safety management and risk mitigation and business development at UCS. We strive to continue to improve quality in these areas, and others at UCS, and we are interested to hear about how we might engage in new ways of working to enhance our services and practices, particularly where it would bring a cost saving or generate income. Do you have any idea about ‘Improving Quality’ at UCS? Or an idea which would contribute to the success of the organisation? Go to Wolsey, staff tab, to submit your ideas.

In the news TV and Radio Dr Emma Bond appeared on the Thinking Allowed programme on Radio 4 to do a live interview on her Children, Sex and Mobile Phones research. Mia Witham, a part-time lecturer on the UCS Otley Foundation degree in landscape and garden design was recently approached by the team who create BBC television’s DIY SOS to work on a specific project in Dartford, Kent.


Take 5

- Student Recruitment Sian Hiskey – Widening Participation Officer The Student Recruitment team works with prospective students from schools, colleges and the wider community to provide information, advice and guidance about higher education opportunities. The team works both locally and across the UK to deliver presentations and workshops to students ranging from Years 9 to 13, as well as their parents and advisors. Sian Hiskey With the end of Aimhigher in July 2011, UCS have recently appointed a new Widening Participation Officer to continue with the outreach work Aimhigher was carrying out in our local schools and to start up new innovative outreach projects to widen participation.

We spoke to Sian Hiskey, Widening Participation Officer at UCS, about the new Suffolk Access Champion Scheme to find out what it’s all about.

How has this scheme come about? As outlined in the UCS Access Agreement from 2012/13, UCS will provide financial support to first year students by match funding the Government contribution towards the National Scholarship Programme (NSP). UCS will however also be running its own additional fee waiver scheme - the Suffolk Access Champion Scheme.

So, can you sum up the scheme in one sentence? UCS are offering Year 13 students studying at a Suffolk state school the chance to receive up to £5000 off their first year of study on a full-time UCS degree programme in exchange for facilitating group mentoring sessions in their own high school.

Are there any criteria the students must meet to be eligible for this scheme? As well as the need to be from a Suffolk state school, the students must be a first generation student going to university in 2012, have a household income of below £30,000 per year and have chosen a UCS full-time course as their UCAS firm or insurance choice. They will also need to complete an application and interview.

What are the benefits to the students in applying for this scheme?

Mia with the SOS team

Heist Award for Marketing Team The UCS External Relations and Marketing Team received the Highly Commended award for Marketing Department of the Year at the annual Heist Awards which recognises and celebrates education marketing in the UK. The Euro RSCG Heist Marketing Department of the Year Award was the biggest award of the night which saw a total of 15 awards presented for a range of marketing initiatives. UCS beat the likes of Bangor University and Loughborough University, as well as many other entrants, to pick up the coveted award.

Apart from the obvious financial benefits, this is a fantastic opportunity for students to improve their CV and employability skills, as well as helping others to access higher education.

Are there any other scholarships available to students studying at UCS? Yes, students can also apply for the National School Programme. This scheme is open to all applicants from Suffolk, Norfolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire. You can find out more on the finance pages of the UCS website:


Events Guide

Autumn Calendar Around Suffolk

Halesworth Arts Festival Where: Halesworth When: 8 - 23 October 2011 Annual two week Festival of music, drama, comedy, film, and art exhibitions from the heart of Halesworth. Tenth Anniversary this year so lots of new faces and some old friends that have been invited back.

Jools Holland and his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra Where: Ipswich Regent When: Saturday 29 October 2011 The undisputed King of boogie-woogie Jools Holland has announced his much-anticipated Autumn/Winter tour for 2011. Joined by his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, the music maestro will embark on a 33 date tour from Friday 28 October through to Thursday 22 December, impressing audiences old and new with the trademark party experience and stunning musical performances that a Jools Holland tour has become renowned for.

Queen Rocks Gospel Where: Marina Theatre, Lowestoft When: Saturday 22 October 2011 A Spectacular Night of Queen with The Bohemians & The ACM Gospel Choir from Last Choir Standing. It’s a unique show featuring all of Queen’s biggest hits performed in a way never seen before. The live high energy Rock & Roll performance of Queen tribute, The Bohemians, blended with the passion, skill and greatness of The ACM Gospel Choir.

UCS Events UCS Ipswich Open Event

Counselling Taster Course

First UCS Academy lecture

Where: UCS Ipswich, Waterfront Building

Where: UCS Ipswich

Where: UCS Waterfront – Lecture Theatre 2

When: 8 October 2011

When: 10 October 2011 – 12 December 2011

When: 12 October 2011

At each of our Open Events there will be a number of information stands where visitors can find out more about student accommodation, student finance, student support and the admissions process. The event is on from 4pm to 7pm.

The Counselling taster course is a part-time 10 week introduction to the theory and practice of counselling. It assumes no previous knowledge or experience. People who find the course helpful are those who are using or are going to use ‘counselling’ or ‘listening skills’ as part of their voluntary or work activities, as well as those wishing to know more about counselling or explore the possibility of training for a new career. The course will be running on Mondays from 6.00pm – 9.00pm.

The programme for the event will be as follows:

Media Training Workshop

UCS Staff Development Opportunities are free to all staff and further information is available on Wolsey.

17.30 – Coffee 18.00 – Welcome and introductions, Professor Mike Saks 18.10 – Professor Brendon Noble (inaugural lecture) 19.00 – Discussion 19.30 – Close

STAFF DEVELOPMENT There are a variety of staff development opportunities offered at UCS running throughout the year. These include: Supervising Masters Dissertations, Preparing to be examined for a doctorate, Leadership and Change (for Management Group), Admissions Tutor Training, H&S for Managers amongst others.

When: Wednesday 9 November 2011 Where: W211, UCS Waterfront Building These sessions will be part of a training day for academic staff. They will give delegates an overview on working effectively with the media, enabling delegates to learn some tips and techniques to help them prepare for giving an interview. The media team will give a presentation covering the different types of media; how to prepare for a range of situations; and a look at some case studies which demonstrate good and bad practice.

To book a place on any course please contact Rik Bond, Training Co-ordinator, on 01473 338325 or email

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