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Feb 2012 February 2012 - Le Nurb NEWS Issue 6 Higher fees not deterring students

Pro-Palestine protest causes controversy


Someone is stealing my milk!

17 ARTS & REVIEWS Kissy sold out

23 Aeskerem


RAG cricket returns

Students protesting outside Wilfred Brown. Bess Browning Following a policy submitted to and agreed by Student Assembly, the Union of Brunel Students are investigating allegations that have been made, accusing a group of students of violent protesting on campus. The accused students called their protest a “street performance with the sole aim to draw attention to the suffering that Palestinian people endure at checkpoints.” The demonstration was outside the Security Office on campus on Wednesday, January 18 at approximately 1.45pm and was watched by number of students. The students set up a reconstruction of an Israeli checkpoint run by Israeli Defence Force (IDF) soldiers in Palestine that restrict Palestinian’s

movement across the country. There were actors playing Palestinians in the performance, as well as Israeli soldiers. The mock ‘soldiers’ were dressed up in suits and had toy guns; the ‘Palestinians’ were made to kneel in the stress position. Prompted by the visit of an Israeli diplomat at Brunel and encouraged by the success of a whole host of Universities – including Goldsmiths, Birmingham and Leeds – who had recently reconstructed similar demonstrations, the group have now been accused of ‘violent’, ‘racist’ and ‘anti-Semitic’ actions. The students involved claim that the Brunel Friends of Palestine Society did not organise the demonstration, nor promote it to its members. One of the students amongst


the accused told Le Nurb: “We are activists and wherever possible we will speak out against inequality and human rights abuses committed against all peoples, including the Palestinian cause, which is a big part of the current peace movement. “This could have been a demonstration against any state in breach of human rights, as many of us are activists and strong believers in justice for all, we felt action to express our disapproval at the presence of an individual representing the Israeli state, was necessary. “Overall, our demonstration was very successful. Those who took part and also the many students who watched us enjoyed the performance, as well as finding it very eye-opening. It was followed by many students asking

us lots of questions and their eagerness to find out more was evidence that what we did was a success.” The President of the Union of Brunel Students, Promise Phillips, supplied the following statement: “UBS maintains a strong and inclusive Equality and Diversity policy, and works to ensure that all members can enjoy their University lives free from intimidation or harassment. UBS is working closely with the University on this issue and welcome both their support and their clear recognition of Union matters.” The investigation continues with the outcomes being presented to a future Student Assembly. You can read the President’s full statement online at

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Disability & Dyslexia gets a new focus.


It’s One World Week! Find out all the details.


Exclusive horoscopes from Auntie Romance.

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February 2012 - Le Nurb WELCOME TO ISSUE 6


Amy Blackford Editor Things are all go in the Union at the moment. One World Week is upon us, Fairtrade Fortnight is coming soon, and the buzz of student elections has once again hit campus. One thing that has caught my eye recently is the new Facebook page that has been set up called “Brunel Uni Memes.” What started as a bit of harmless fun has kidnapped many conversations this week and has become the latest craze. Featuring amusing statements relating to Brunel and generic university life, it certainly has captured the attention throughout campus, with both staff and students laughing at the comments. February also sees the annual Valentine’s Day blues of bitter singletons. I saw a great comment on Facebook recently that said that complaining about Valentines Day seems as institutionalised as the event itself. This is too true. Countless couples I know bought small novelty gifts to celebrate the tradition but I saw even more complaining about the day; if this is something that people feel so strongly enough to complain about, then some people need to get a reality check. What has become more apparent, however, is the looming dissertation deadlines. My dissertation title is ‘How far should a journalist go to get a story?’ It is an investigation into current ethical and legal practices of journalists. Like many students, I have found myself procrastinating a lot more than usual. My friend and I have now created a ‘word-o-meter’ to try and encourage us to compete against each other - as it stands I have done 4,500 against his 2,000. We have different working styles, however: I prefer to do the work in bulk, per piece, whereas he does it at 100 words at a time. Either way, you’re still losing, James! Finally, have you ever thought that one of your lecturers deserves some recognition for all the hard work they put it? Do they go above and beyond the job requirements for you? Then why not nominate them for a Student-Led Teaching award? VicePresident Craig Best has launched the new campaign to give recognition to lecturers that do just that. You still have until February 23 to do so. Visit to submit your nominations.

Issue 7 out March 22

This Month...

The Team


This month’s team question: in honour of One World Week, where’s the one place in the world you want to visit?


NEWS Near, far

ARTS & REVIEWS You open the door












Wherever you are

I believe that the heart does go on

And you’re here in my heart

And my heart will go on and on

Once more

Editor Amy ‘Venice’ Blackford Deputy Editor Ben ‘Somewhere Warm’ Moxey Chief Designer Rob ‘Slough’ Hunt Chief Sub-Editor Katrina ‘Meerkovo’ Muhly Media Chair Tom ‘Outside the M25’ Scott NEWS

Simply put, if you’re a current Brunel student, you can write for Le Nurb. There’s a few things to bear in mind:

News Editor Bess ‘South America’ Browning Sub Editor Adam ‘Hawaii’ Martley Designer Ajay ‘Tokyo’ Nair



Submissions - Your article should be saved as a Word document (.doc or .docx). - Its filename should contain your name, student number, and a suggested headline. - We don’t accept PDF, Works (.wps), OpenOffice (.odt), Pages (.pages) or other formats. - Publisher files (.pub) are particularly horrific, beastly things. Please don’t send any, ever, or Rob will cry. - It may sound obvious, but please run a spellcheck before you submit your article! YOUR IMAGES

- For a Union News or Features article, don’t forget your headshot for use in the byline. - If you like, you can suggest specific images for your article. They’ll need to be separate .jpg or .png files. - Don’t embed your images into the article document - this compresses them too much for use on the page. - Any image filenames and image credits (who the photographer is) should be listed at the end of your article. - Images you submit must not be copyrighted by another individual or organisation. - Please don’t just nick pictures off Google Image Search; we can’t use them 99% of the time! YOUR CONTACTS

Enquiries, advertising & complaints Design queries and feedback News articles In-depth articles on a given topic Reviews and arts articles Everything sport-related

Amy - Rob - via (‘Design Feedback’ in the subject line) Bess - Emma - Nick - Ollie -


The closing date for articles for our penultimate issue is Friday, March 9.

More from Le Nurb http://

Designer Jo ‘Everest Basecamp’ Barnard FEATURES Features Editor Emma ‘North Korea’ Butcher Sub Editor Sharna Lee ‘Swiss Alps’ Heir Designer Enya ‘Llanfair’ Williams Staff Writers Hayley ‘Italy’ Baldwin Devina ‘Iceland’ Sanghani Alec ‘Grand Canyon’ Beeson Rhys ‘The Congo’ Morgan-Jones Charlotte ‘Also Tokyo’ Bale ARTS & REVIEWS Arts & Reviews Editor Nick ‘Bali’ Birss Sub Editor Jon ‘Vegas, Baby!’ Partridge Designer Julian ‘Under Your Skin’ Minuzzi Staff Writers Emma ‘Tokyo Again’ I’Anson Subat Bashir Chrissie Gomez Ricky ‘Narnia’ Compton Lewis ‘Athens’ Sluman Matt ‘New York’ Smith Daisy Adamson SPORT




We’ve moved on Facebook, and are now sharing a page with Radio Brunel. Search ‘UBS Student Media’ for all the latest updates. We’re also on Twitter: @ubsstudentmedia.

This major update brings the mostrequested feature - student media integration - to the UBS apps! See what else is new and download for free at

For more Le Nurb information, including a back issue archive and full submission guidelines, take a look at our updated minisite

Sport Editor & Designer Ollie ‘Phuket’ de Kretser Sub Editor Paul ‘Antarctica’ Round PHOTOGRAPHY Lead Photographer Adil ‘Australia’ Khan Deshmukh

Advertising Le Nurb is distributed eight times a year, across campus, to a network of 15,000 students. We offer great rates to advertisers, plus discounts for on-campus clubs, societies and organisations. Find out more at or via the Editor. To book an advertising slot, call Bonnie Crate on 01895 267215. The deadline for inclusion in issue 7 is Friday, March 9.

All articles and pictures © their respective authors unless otherwise indicated. Views expressed are those of the writers and do not reflect the official position of UBS or Brunel University. All comments and complaints about content in Le Nurb should be addressed to the Editor in the first instance: Complaints will only be entertained where it can be proven that an article or graphic is: factually inaccurate; breaches the Press Complaints Commission’s Editors’ Code of Practice; breaches the National Union of Journalists’ Code of Conduct; breaks the law; or encourages readers to break the law. No complaint that fails to satisfy at least one of these criteria will be upheld. Published by: Union of Brunel Students, Kingston Lane, Uxbridge, UB8 3PH. Printed by: Print & Digital Associates Ltd, Fernleigh House, 10 Uttoxeter Road, Mickleover, Derby, DE3 5DA.

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February 2012 - Le Nurb NEWS

Brrrrrunel enjoys big freeze Bess Browning A blanket of snow fell on campus for one night only last week and caused chaos across the UK.

As much as 10cm hit the Hillingdon borough overnight on Saturday, February 4, but turned into slush by the Monday.

Trains were delayed and 40% of the flights due to leave Heathrow on Sunday were cancelled, showing again how much Britain can’t handle


News In Brief

the snow. This didn’t stop Brunelians making the most of the snow for one day only… Teri Evans

The only loser in the village An entire town in Spain won the Christmas lottery, except for one man who was overlooked by everyone else. The local homeowners association got everyone in Sodeto to pull together for tickets and won $950 million, or $130,000 each. They forgot, however, to ask one man in the town who must now remain poor.

Quick draw A company in New York is now offering a home delivery service for its range of condoms. Babeland will offer customers a bike service for frisky couples who don’t want to leave the house for protection. “We’ve had people call and say, ‘We desperately need it here within the hour,’’’ said Steph, a Babeland sex educator. “It’s the gift that keeps on giving.”

A Brunel snow family.

Brunel’s Placement and Careers Centre best in country Bess Browning The University’s Placement and Careers Centre (PCC) were rewarded for being the Best University Placement Centre at a national award ceremony last month. The National Placement and Internship Awards, which recognises the support and opportunities given to students to gain the best from their internships and careers, took place on Wednesday, January 18.

The PCC at Brunel has now won this award three years in a row, showing just how much the centre is improving students’ employability. The co-founder of RateMyPlacement, the project that organises the award scheme, said: “Alongside a universitywide commitment to improving employability, this one-stopshop goes beyond the call of duty to develop innovative and forward-thinking ways to engage

students and recruiters alike. Focusing on engaging students early through the publication of an employability guide, placement peer monitoring schemes and an effective use of social media and technology, the judges were amazed by the quantity of initiatives developed by this department.” Cait Davies, a student at Brunel, said: “It’s really promising having such a great careers centre at Brunel. It gives me even

more hope of finding a job when I graduate.” Celebrating their achievement, the team at the PCC ran Employability Week from February 6-10, giving Brunelians more support in boosting their job prospects upon graduation. The PCC are contactable via their website, or you can speak to them in person at the Bannerman Centre on campus.

Higher education – too high a price to pay? Sophie Hart It’s at this time of year that thousands of students are regularly checking their emails and UCAS applications to find out whether they’ve been accepted at their first choice university. However, recent UCAS figures have revealed this trend is in decline, as the number of students applying for a place at university has decreased this year. The applications for university starters in Autumn 2012 closed in late January and UCAS have revealed a reduction in university applicants of 7.4% overall. In the UK, applications have

dropped by 8.7%, and in England there is a shocking decrease in applications of almost 9.9%. Overall, there nearly 44,000 less applicants applying than at this point last year, and around 30,000 less than in 2010. Nevertheless, these figures appear unsurprising following the government’s plans to increase tuition fees from 2012; fewer students took a gap year and therefore applied in 2011, or decided against applying due to the rise in fees. Although this release of figures by UCAS reveals a decline in the number of applications from this

time last year, the figures are not as bad as many feared, due to a minor late surge in submissions. UCAS chief executive Mary Curnock Cook stated that there has actually been a larger decrease in applicants from affluent backgrounds (2.5%) than those from disadvantaged backgrounds (0.2%). She also commented that there is a worrying gap of applications between the sexes, with the proportion of men being down by 8.5%, while female applicants are down 6.7%. Despite the decrease in applicants in 2012, demand will continue to Please recycle.

outstrip the supply of university places this year. There are already 50,000 more applications this year than there were acceptances at universities in 2011. Competition will be more intense as the number of government-funded places at English universities will drop by 10,000. Universities minister David Willetts commented that “even with a small reduction in applications, this will be a competitive year like any other as people continue to understand that university remains a good long-term investment in your future.”

Too good an offer New research has shown that Britons are too cynical to take free things from people. The study, in which a woman offered to pay other people’s bus fares, found that only 38 people out of thousands took her up on the offer. The majority of the 38 people were generally teenagers, meaning that the older we are, the more cynical we get.

Sorry, Oxford, I reject you 19-year-old Elly Nowell, who had an interview at Oxford University, has shocked the University by sending in a rejection letter of her own. She said that Oxford does not meet the standard of the Universities that she will be considering. She also criticised that traditions of Oxford, claiming it allows private school students to flourish and leaves public school students intimidated.

Business to take care of A woman from China has spent 902 days sitting on a toilet, claiming she “felt a force holding me down.” Mee Yan Leong ate and slept on her porcelain throne and only showered 18 times. She emerged after almost three years with the help of paramedics.

Supernatural beating Police were called to a house in Wisconsin believing that a husband had struck out at his wife. When police arrived, the husband claimed to have a rather strange alibi - “a ghost did it.” He was later arrested despite his attempts to avoid the law.


February 2012 - Le Nurb NEWS

Rising fees not putting students off uni Wendt Commons

Students are still working hard to get into University. Tom Scott Despite tuition fees being tripled for next year’s intake of university students, young people still have a huge desire to attend university. A recent research study, conducted by YouGov, has shown that young people are more focused on the quality of the course and future employment opportunities rather than the

rising cost of university life. The study of 1,000 people between 16 and 20 shows that 80% of 16-18 year olds still want to study at university. 27% of young people surveyed said that ‘they wanted to go to university but could not afford it.’ However, young people still believe in the longer-term financial benefits of a university

education and feel that the trade off between a higher income and higher debts is a risk worth taking. Statistics show that by the time students reach the age of 35, they expect to earn a lot more than people who did not attend university. The YouGov survey also found out what young people felt were

the most important factors on whether they are to attend university or not. Most young people are looking for a course with a high quality teaching record, the appropriateness of the course and the ability to move into a well paid job at the end of the course. However, over 75% have disagreed with the government’s

policy to increase the cap on tuition fees to £9,000 a year. There is even more positive news for universities, as just 20% of young people believe “a university course is overrated’ and only 13% feel ‘they will benefit more from going to work after school rather than university.”

UNILAD website suspended after ‘condoning rape’ Lily Woods The controversial website, aimed at “lads at uni,” has been temporarily suspended after posting an article accused of “casually trivialising rape.” Their latest feature, titled ‘Sexual Mathematics,’ crudely prompts the consideration of the “mathematical statistic” that 85% of cases of rape go unreported, before concluding that “that seems fairly good odds.” The article ends with the contentious statement: “UNILAD

does not condone rape without saying ‘surprise.’” Run by Plymouth University student Jamie Street, alongside editor-in-chief Alex Partridge, the website is now replaced with a static message stating that it shall re-launch shortly. A Facebook status containing an apology appeared online last week, admitting that “the comment regarding rape was uncalled-for and should in no way have been published.” They also promised to begin “cleaning

up our act on” after assuring that “it will never happen again.” UNILAD claims to have 8,000 visitors a day, as well as over 80,000 likes on Facebook, generating heated online debate and outrage. The website was branded “pathetic” by the National Women’s Officer with the National Union of Students, Estelle Hart, who blames their “attempts at humour” for feeding into a view in society that women are to Please recycle.

blame for violence committed against them. Luke Turner’s article posted on eloquently argues similarly, saying that the “misogynist” founders and followers of UNILAD own nothing but “ill-used testosterone and desperate, inchoate sexual fantasies.” He blames the selfish, materialistic and fame-obsessed contemporary culture for creating a “climate where a site like UNILAD can apparently thrive.” Brunel fresher Chess Loader

agrees: “Our generation’s socalled Facebook culture seems to help generate these misogynist messages, from egotistical ‘lads’ hiding behind a computer screen.” “I’m all for a bit of ‘banter’ – I laugh along with the light-hearted Facebook groups, such as ‘the awkward moment when a girl doesn’t pick the iron when playing Monopoly.’ But when serious, harrowing subjects such as rape and domestic violence are used in an unacceptable blasé fashion, it goes beyond a joke.”

February 2012 - Le Nurb NEWS


Government watchdog gets tough in fight for fair access George Bowden Universities which don’t recruit enough students from poorer backgrounds face having their right to charge tuition fees above £6,000 withdrawn, the incoming head of the Office for Fair Access (OFFA) has said. Professor Les Ebdon, the likely successor to the outgoing head of the higher education watchdog, made his preferred method of sanction clear during a preappointment hearing. He told the House of

Commons’ Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee that the withdrawal of an access agreement would be a “significant sanction” to a University. The government’s university funding reforms stipulate every institution wishing to charge above £6,000, including Brunel, must set out its plans for supporting and attracting less well-off students. Brunel’s 2012-13 access agreement, which takes effect this year, states: “Brunel

University has a strong reputation for widening access both within the sector and with its partners in both mainstream education and further education. “The University has a diverse student population and currently meets or exceeds the majority of benchmarks for “under-represented” groups in Higher Education. We will seek to maintain our record of fair access and diverse admissions…” However, it also highlights

areas for improvement, with Brunel being below the UK average for the number of mature students and students from low participation neighbourhoods. Professor Ebdon’s appearance has been seen as “laying down the gauntlet” to less well prepared institutions, as well as the most selective universities. He described the withdrawal of access agreements as a ‘nuclear option,’ saying: “Once one talks about nuclear buttons, if you ever say you will never press the

nuclear button then you don’t have a nuclear button.” His evidence has been seen as advocating greater control by the OFFA watchdog in university affairs. He advised universities to look at the previous years’ admissions and statistics to realise areas for improvement, saying: “If they don’t do that, [OFFA] will be an office which will not be afraid to employ sanctions if they don’t achieve these outcomes.”

Brunel University Brunel maintains it currently meets or exceeds the majority of benchmarks for “underrepresented” groups in further education.

OBE for Brunel Professor Amy Blackford The Queen’s New Year Honours list has seen Professor Celia Brackenridge receive an OBE for services to Equality and Child Protection in Sport. Now a research professor and a member of the Brunel Centre for Sport, Health and Wellbeing, Professor Brackenridge retired

in 2010 as Director of Brunel’s Centre for Youth Sport and Athlete Welfare. Upon the announcement, she said: “This came as a complete bolt from the blue. This award is also for all the people who have helped me, who include the NSPCC and my research colleagues.”

She added: “It’s important that coaches treat the athletes as people first and foremost, and as potential medal-winners second.” Professor Brackenridge is a founding member of the Women’s Sports Foundation and was an early campaigner for gender equality in sport. She is also the Chair of the Local

Organising Committee for the 2012 International Convention on Science, Education and Medicine in Sport (ICSEMIS), the global scientific conference that precedes each Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Professor of Human Development at Brunel University, Ian Rivers, spoke

of Professor Brackenridge’s award: “It is a testament to Celia’s ground-breaking and tireless efforts in promoting the protection of young people in sport. This is a very proud moment for us in Sport Sciences to have a colleague recognised by the Crown for her contribution nationally and internationally.”

Ford awards Brunel with Scholarships George Bowden Automobile giant Ford has awarded Brunel £100,000 worth of Scholarships, the University has announced. Ford Motor Company’s UK arm, Ford of Britain, has awarded the incentive to inspire the next generation of talented engineers, inventors and scientists. Each successful student will

receive £10,000 over a three-year degree programme. On its website Brunel said: “High-achieving students who achieve a minimum of AAB grades or equivalent at A-level will be chosen from engineering, science, manufacturing and technology subjects. “Brunel University has a long history of excellence in engineering

and technology, and is now as wellrespected in engineering circles as was its namesake Isambard Kingdom Brunel a hundred years ago.” Students must apply by March 10, suggesting those applying will have confirmed an offer from Brunel. Brunel is among 12 other universities with whom Ford Please recycle.

will work, including Bath, East Anglia and Imperial College London. Ford of Britain Chief Executive Joe Greenwell said: “Ford is encouraging students to choose courses which deliver the highest quality science and technology skills which are fundamental to our future industrial base. “The scholarship programme is

just one of the ways in which Ford is inspiring the next generation of designers, engineers, and scientists and in turn, helping to rebalance the UK economy and ensure longterm economic success.” Ford of Britain employs over 15,000 people and has two major manufacturing centres in Wales and Essex, where the engines for one in three Ford cars are produced.


February 2012 - Le Nurb NEWS

One Water, one aim Amy Blackford Over 80% of the £7,000 needed to fund the Brunel-sponsored ‘play pump’ has now been raised through sales of One Water on campus. Traditionally seen on sale in More, 5p of every bottle sold goes directly to the One Foundation. The One Foundation installs roundabout-powered pumps to remote villages and allows the children to have fun whilst generating water. Campus Services Catering Manager Barry Harcourt said: “Selling One Water fits in perfectly with the ethos of the Catering Department and the University. “By selling good quality water from a non-profit organisation, we’re helping make a real difference in remote African villages.”

Julien Harneis

One of One Foundation’s water pumps.

Facebook, Twitter Graduates criticised by ‘more addictive employers for lacking skills than alcohol’ Adam Martley A report has warned that university graduates do not have the skills that some employers are looking for. The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) surveyed over 200 employers, including Marks & Spencer, Ernst & Young, and John Lewis. Graduates have been criticised for not being developed enough in areas such as teamwork and communication and for spending too little time on their job applications. Almost a third of employers surveyed did not fill graduate vacancies in 2010-11, an increase of 6% on the year before. Employers also said that there

was a lack of graduates with skills such as engineering. The report said: “They explained that whilst they receive good international applications, they experience difficulties achieving security clearance at the right level to employ them and so there is an urgent need for more skilled British engineering graduates to remedy this situation.” Two-fifths of employers failed to fill just 5% of vacancies, with employers blaming the selection of graduates on offer, saying that “skill levels often did not meet their requirements.” The news comes at a time of rising unemployment despite a competitive job market, with it being estimated that there

are 48 applications per vacancy on average. The report says although one in six graduates leave university with a first and almost half with a 2:1, getting a good degree is not enough for employers. One employer said that “some school-leavers were stronger than graduates” and had changed some positions accordingly. The AGR also said that some industries were struggling “in light of the inflexibility of the work-life balance.” Graduate vacancies are expected to fall by 1.2% in 2011-12 and employers advised that graduates should develop more transferrable skills and spend more time filling out their applications.

Bpsusf Guillaume Paumier Mark Zuckerberg. Simi Sagoo Research suggests that social networking sites have become more addictive that tobacco and alcohol. According to a study of people’s daily desires, resisting the urge to check their Facebook and Twitter updates has become more difficult than turning down a drink. From a survey of 200 people, it was found that sleep and sex were the two things most longed for during the day, whilst the urge to keep on top of social networking was among the hardest to resist. Surprisingly, the desire for alcohol and tobacco ranked much lower, despite their addictive nature. Researchers from the University of Chicago further found that having resisted a particular urge frequently raises the chance of caving in the next time. Throughout the day, our constant efforts to resist temptation sap

our willpower, making our cravings even stronger. “As a day wears on, willpower becomes lower and self-control efforts are more likely to fail,” says Dr Wilhelm Hofmann, who led the research. Students particularly showed signs of addiction. As highlighted by researchers, a “clear majority” of almost 1,000 university students interviewed at 12 campuses in 10 countries, including Britain, America and China, struggled to avoid social networking for one full day. When forced to part with their gadgets, four in five students faced mental and physical distress, panic and confusion. Whilst it may seem exaggerated to describe student addiction to technology as “similar to drug cravings,” think of your daily routine. Could you go 24 hours without “plugging in”?

Graduates aren’t impressing their potential employers. Please recycle.

February 2012 - Le Nurb NEWS


Check the symptoms of meningitis… on your iPhone Bess Browning A new app that has information on the signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia has become available free on the iPhone App Store. The app, created by the Meningitis Research Foundation (MRF), is being promoted by 23-year-old Leeds University student Kathleen Hawkin, who lost her legs to meningococcal

group B disease when she was 18. Kathleen said: “Being told I would lose my legs is to this day the hardest moment I have encountered. The MRF app is a great way to learn important information about meningitis and septicaemia. So many students just like me don’t know the symptoms, so the app can tell you what to look out for and get you to the nearest hospital. It only

takes 30 seconds to download and could save a life.” Meningitis and septicaemia can be hard to spot at first but symptoms may include fever, vomiting, headache and feeling generally unwell. MRF Chief Executive Chris Head said: “Knowing the signs and symptoms of meningitis is crucial and quick action can save lives. This

app ensures people have vital lifesaving information directly at their fingertips. Students can learn about the diseases and the symptoms whilst also competing against their friends with an interactive game. The app is free and we are encouraging every iPhone, iPad and iPod touch user to download it today.” The app also has details of your local A&E, latest news and

fundraising challenges, as well as a quirky game with the aim to “blast the meningitis bug.” DOWNLOAD THE APP Visit for more information, or download the app directly by searching for it on the App Store.

Meningitis Research Foundation

The new MRF iPhone app.

Kathleen Hawkin lost her legs to meningitis.

Graduates with work experience take a third of all jobs Grace Witherden A third of graduate jobs are now going to candidates who have already gained work experience in the company or chosen field, as shown by High Fliers Research. This will come as bad news for graduates that failed to secure any work experience during their time at university. While applications have increased by 19% against 2011’s intake, the number of graduate jobs available has only risen by 6.4%. With competition fiercer than ever, candidates without work experience or an internship may struggle to make their application stand out amongst fellow graduates. Many recruiters have said that applicants with no work experience would be unlikely to make it through the tough selection process. Martin Birchall, managing director of High Fliers Research, said: “Today’s report includes the stark warning to the ‘Class of 2012’ that in a highly competitive graduate job market, new graduates who’ve not had any work experience at all during their time at university have little hope of landing a well-paid job with

a leading employer, irrespective of the academic results they achieve or the University they’ve attended.” Furthermore, people leaving

university this year will be in competition with last year’s graduates who may have delayed their application in order to gain some work experience.


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It is essential that students start looking for experience and internships from their first year onwards in order to be successful in future graduate job applications.

Brunelian wins award

Adam Martley A Brunel graduate has won an award for his work as an occupational therapist. Malcolm Shopland won the Hertfordshire Health and Community Staff ‘You’re a Star’ award after being nominated by County Councillor Barbara Lamb. She saw Malcolm at work at a constituent’s home and wrote a letter to Team Manager Michele Taylor-Rose praising his work. The county councillor said: “He always follows through his work and makes contact with the clients to ensure they are happy. It’s seldom that I hear such praise and frequently I have to listen to the complaints that is why I felt it necessary to bring the good news to your notice.” She added: “I appreciate with all the cutbacks things are more difficult for everyone, but a pleasant personality, kindness and understanding costs nothing.” Malcolm, who has worked for Hertfordshire Council for two years, received a certificate and a trophy from Health and Community Staff director Sarah Pickup for his work. He said: “I’m a little bit pink in the face. It’s very nice. I work in a fantastic team, they’re very supportive, and I thoroughly enjoy my job.” Team Manager Michele TaylorRose says he is “a very valued member of the team.”


February 2012 - Le Nurb UNION NEWS

Brunel results in Switchoff campaign Love life. Live free. Melissa Wong The halfway results for the Residences Student Switch Off are in! The campaign, which is in its second year, records the amount of energy used by each hall and compares that figure to last year to see how much energy has been saved. The hall with the biggest saving wins

a big party at the end of the year. Simple! We have compared the results from October and November. Central are leading the way, followed by Shoreditch and then Maurice Kogan. The table here shows the top ten halls so far. But there’s still a long way to go. More comparisons will be made over the next few months, and the final result will be released in May. The winning hall will win a party! Last year the winners were Faraday Hall and they all got a free burger and drink during the

events in FACE Week! If you live in halls, you can win prizes in the meantime by taking part in the photo competitions which will appear on the Facebook page: Together we can help reach the carbon emission targets for Brunel!

Top 10 halls by energy saving Energy Saving Ranking







Maurice Kogan



Brian Winstanley

Visit for more information on the Switch Off campaign.






Stephen Bragg




Trevor Slater


Michael Bevis

The table of results. Congratulations to Central!

Huge success for RAG Week 2012 Raising, giving and having fun. Elena Morgan A few weeks ago, you may have noticed some crazy things were happening in the name of charity; it could only mean one thing – RAG Week! Many different clubs and societies got involved, including Tennis, Climbing, and Cricket. Radio Brunel were amazing, raising over £350 alone with their 120 hours of non-stop broadcasting. The catering staff were also brilliant; More raised £250 with the aid of collection tins and a donation button on the tills. Residences raised a massive £500 with such events as a duck race on the River Pinn. Brunel’s Got Talent was a huge success; there was a diverse range of acts, including singers, solo dancers and dance groups. It was spoken word artist Linda Fred-Horsfall who was the lucky winner of £100 in cash and a spot performing at Beach Break Live in June. Brunel’s own Take Me Out proved to be very popular and raised £650! It proved to be so popular, in fact, that it may be returning very soon. So keep your eyes peeled about how you can be involved. The RAG Naked Calendars did arrive a little late due to printing problems, but they

are now here and they look fantastic! There’s a boys’ one and a girls’ one and they’re both on sale at UBS Reception for just £6 each – get them before they’re gone! Well done to those who bared all in the name of charity.

The total amount of money raised during RAG Week is over £4,500, and it couldn’t have been done without you guys. Thanks to the many volunteers we were able to run some amazing events and to really get RAG into the student population’s consciousness.

You’ll be seeing RAG volunteers in their red shirts with Izzy the duck on them much more often around campus, so please do have a chat with them and see how you can be involved in something similar!

The RAG team having pulled off another RAG Week!

WRITE FOR US! Le Nurb accepts submissions from any Brunel student. Full details on page 2.

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FIND OUT MORE You can ‘like’ our page on Facebook (search for ‘UBS RAG’), follow us on Twitter (@ubsrag), or visit for further information.

February 2012 - Le Nurb UNION NEWS


February Student Assembly report Brunel memes never get boring! Tom Scott The first Student Assembly meeting of 2012 met on January 26 at the University Council Chambers at 6pm. The meeting was led by Chair Joshua Dixon and present were Union officers, community members and Union staff members. Also present at the meeting were the new acting CEO of the Union of Brunel Students, Craig Lithgow, and Honorary Member Rob Macredie. The first action of the meeting was the announcement that Anita Chowdury had resigned from her position as Academic Diversity Chair, after she

was elected into the position last March. The minutes of the previous meeting were reviewed and passed unanimously. After dealing with the matters arising from previous meetings, the meeting moved on to the motions. Vice-President Academic Representation Craig Best presented the first motion of the meeting. He wanted to change the position of the Academic Diversity Chair to a Postgraduate Students Chair. Best felt as though representation was required for the postgraduate body within the UBS, as they comprise 35% of the Union membership. No one spoke against the motion and it was passed unanimously.

Disability & Dyslexia gets a new focus Fun loving... James Ward For any students who feel that they need support and representation in terms of the students’ union, look no further than the DDC (Brunel Disability and Dyslexia Committee). This is a student-run organisation dealing with things from how to encourage more students to get tested for dyslexia to putting pressure on the University to support students who have needs. The committee are dedicated to ensuring that students have adequate representation and support from the students’ union and from the University as well. A list of the committee members and emails: Clare Kato Dhariya Madani Donya Augustus-Beckford Elvira Karanja hs10eek Muhammad Tariq Tahir

The next motion was presented by RAG Chair, Brett Halsey, who wished to commend the Vice President Community Welfare, Avina Patel, for her hard work during the Alcohol and Drug Awareness Week. Peter Smallwood spoke against the motion, claiming he was unsure whether Student Assembly should be commending student officers for work that they are paid to do. Despite numerous abstains, the motion was passed. The next was an emergency motion, which was presented by the Volunteer Chair Alex Mitchell. The motion was to investigate the unruly protests by proPalestine campaigners on January 18, claiming that the UBS should undertake an official investigation as

to the involvement of Union societies and elected Union officials. No one spoke against the motion and the motion was passed. Following from this was the presentation of the full-time and part-time officers’ reports. All reports, except for the Vice President Academic Representation, Vice President Student Activities and the Campaigns Chairs, due to being late, were circulated prior to the meeting. All reports were questioned and passed indicatively. The final point on the agenda was the Supplementary Regulations for the upcoming Spring Elections. The regulations were questioned and passed indicatively.

The Director of Membership Engagement then spoke about the recommendation for a returning officer for the Spring Elections. He recommended Chris Shelley, a senior staff member from within the Representation NUS Facilities. No one spoke against the recommendation and then it was passed indicatively. The meeting concluded with Any Other Business. FIND OUT MORE The date of the next meeting is Thursday, February 23 at 6pm in the Council Chambers. All minutes from previous Student Assembly meetings are available to download via the website

A focus on One World Week ...I also enjoy Nando’s.

James Ward Haiti experienced a natural Nichole Davies disaster that shook the world. But have you ever wondered Priya Kaushal how developing countries deal with these kinds of events? Yanique Parson Countries such as Japan who have had natural disasters have the nous and the knowDo not hesitate to contact how in addition to the fiscal any of them to find out more prowess to deal with this. information or to pass on your In developing countries, the suggestions. They will soon be on issue of corruption and fiscal campus wearing purple hoodies mismanagement is more with their name and job role apparent and can hinder the on them so they will be easily development of the country, spotted. Their pictures will also especially in the face of be going up in the Disability natural disasters. and Dyslexia Service (DDS) up For One World Week, the in the Bannerman Centre, room World Students Chair and I 315, so while waiting for have facilitated an event on the hoodies, their faces are Monday, February 20 at 6pm easily recognisable. to educate people about The committee are also what is actually happening interested in putting on a few in Haiti. The event will be a events in order to showcase and workshop, with a inspire other students as well small talk about the as educate them on the positive situation, then an interactive things that people with disability Q&A session with a few activities and dyslexia have to offer and for everyone to complete. The have achieved. idea is to provide an outlook on Future events Include: the situation in Haiti while also ~3XPaXTbUa^\cWT_^X]c^UeXTf making the event interesting of a disabled/dyslexic student, and informative. ~   <TTc P]S VaTTcb X] PSSXcX^] The people giving the talk are to charity fundraisers, from the New Internationalist, ~ 4eT]cb fXcW VdTbc b_TPZTab a non-profit justice magazine to inspire students, disabled that reports on issues ranging or otherwise. from human rights to poverty. The situation in Haiti is important because although we

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attempt to celebrate the best parts of everyone’s culture, we fail to see the grim side of it. I am sure that many of us have given to charities supporting international aid and many of us have been worried for the people in those situations. I feel it is important to see how the government handle things in countries where there is a struggle. Furthermore, it is important to see how the poorest people in the world are living and how they are affected by these sorts of disasters. We often tend to donate and believe that is us doing our bit, but by attending workshops like these and viewing the political situation,

we broaden our knowledge, widen our participation and truly understand and empathise with the people in Haiti. On another note I am planning and developing a cultural day for the FACE Festival which will include as many cultures as want to be involved. The idea is to have a festival on the Quad with as many aspects of different cultures as possible, from dancing to foods and fashion shows. I will be writing to most of the large cultural societies for their support, but do email me to get involved! EMAIL JAMES

One World Week: February 20-24.



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We all know one person who makes a difference to our time at Brunel; a lecturer or someone in admin that goes the extra mile. This gives you the chance to nominate them for an award and tells us what you think makes them stand out from the crowd. All the information gathered will be used by the SLTA panel to award someone for the below awards, but it will also help us at the Union campaign for what you like, and what you want! It only takes 2 minutes to nominate someone who makes a difference. I know they are out there, You know they are out there. Now let everyone else know. Craig Best, VP Academic Representation

How to Nominate To read the full criteria for each award:

WWW.BRUNELSTUDENTS.COM/BENGUINS You can nominate someone using the form on the back of this booklet, or by going online.



The inspirational teaching award will be awarded to a member of academic staff who effectively engages, challenges and inspires their students with the content of the course Eligibility: a member of academic staff who is engaged in the active delivery of course content.

The exceptional module award will be awarded to a Module that has demonstrated the clear importance of the learning partnership between lecturer and student. Eligibility: this award will identify a specific (and complete) academic MODULE (at any level) OUTSTANDING ADMIN AND SUPPORT


The Outstanding Admin and Support Award will be awarded to a member or group of non-academic staff that has made a positive influence on the student experience Eligibility: nominations are open for any NON-ACADEMIC staff

The Innovative Teaching award will be awarded to a member of academic staff who promotes and explores new methods of learning with clear focus on the importance of “study”. Eligibility: a member of academic staff who is engaged in the active delivery of course content.



The UBS has advocated in recent campaigns the importance of effective feedback at all levels, this award continues to highlight the investment the UBS feels needs to be put on feedback at Brunel. The Best Feedback Award will be awarded to a member of academic staff that has gone above and beyond in giving constructive, timely and informative feedback. Eligibility: nominations are open to any member of Academic staff who in the course of their work provide feedback on students academic work.

The Supervisor of the Year award will be awarded to a member of academic staff who has been a dissertation supervisor, research supervisor or placement supervisor that has gone above and beyond to promote and sustain a quality student experience Eligibility: a member of academic staff who provides supervisory support for students engaged in research, placements and/or dissertations. POSTGRADUATES’ CHOICE


The Postgraduates’ choice award will be awarded to any member of the University Staff that supports, teaches or supervisors’ postgraduate students Eligibility (who/ what can be nominated); any member of University staff who’s work directly contributes to the Post Graduate student experience.

The UBS has advocated in recent campaigns the importance of that contact with a personal tutor at all levels, this award continues to highlight the investment the UBS feels needs to be put on Personal Tutoring at Brunel. The Personal Tutoring Award will be awarded to a member of academic staff that has gone above and beyond in delivering that essential support. Eligibility: nominations are open to any member of University staff who provides Personal Tutor support to members of the Student Body.

Did you spot any Benguins? Join them on

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I have a disciplinary case against me and I feel really upset.... February 2012 - Le Nurb





I feel miserable and can’t get out of bed….. My personal tutor is always rude to me and has no time for me….

Counselling Mediation, Conflict Coaching and Counselling before submitting a complaint

onflict oaching

I’m doing a PhD and my supervisor doesn’t offer me enough help or support………

Mediation and/or Complaints Service.

Are you confused about what you should do?

Have you got an issue with someone or something at Brunel?

I am an overseas student and haven’t got my loan yet….people at the Uni never respond to my emails… Mediation and/or Complaints Service. My lectures are frequently cancelled and not rescheduled…………

Mediation and/or Complaints Service.

I live with another student off campus and they never clean the house…

Conflict Coaching

I’m in the Uni hockey team and my captain is always telling me I’m rubbish…. I had an initial mediation meeting but my tutor won’t meet with me in the face to face meeting…

Conflict Coaching, Mediation and contact Diverse Brunel. Complaint to UBS

Brunel’s Student Services offer a variety of ways of helping resolve your grievance.

Conflict Coaching, before submitting a complaint

An Administrator in my School is always really“I’ve unhelpful tells me that’s Conflict Coaching and Mediation got aand problem to “work it out for myself”… really worrying me…. who and/or Complaints Service

can I turn to for help?”…..

Sasha, a level 1 undergrad living in Halls, told me about a problem she is having:

Check out the table inside which gives you information about which service may be best for you.

Why don’t you try………

I went out last night and now one of my friends has put photos of me Conflict coaching or Dignity at Study Ion have a disciplinary case against Facebook me and I feel really upset.... Counselling I feel miserable and can’t get out of bed….. My personal tutor is always rude to me and has no time for me…. I’m doing a PhD and my supervisor doesn’t offer me enough help or support………

All these services are free of charge and available on campus to all registered students.


Have you got an issue with someone or something at Brunel?

Mediation, Conflict Coaching and Counselling before submitting a complaint

Mediation and/or Complaints Service.

Are you confused about what you should do?

I am an overseas student and haven’t got my loan yet….people at the Uni never respond to my emails… Mediation and/or Complaints Service. My lectures are frequently cancelled and not rescheduled…………

Mediation and/or Complaints Service.

I live with another student off campus and they never clean the house…

Conflict Coaching

I’m in the Uni hockey team and my captain is always telling me I’m rubbish….

Conflict Coaching, Mediation and contact Diverse Brunel. Complaint to UBS

I had an initial mediation meeting but my tutor won’t meet with me in the face to face meeting…

Conflict Coaching, before submitting a complaint

An Administrator in my School is always really unhelpful and tells me to “work it out for myself”…

Conflict Coaching and Mediation and/or Complaints Service

I went out last night and now one of my friends has put photos of me on Facebook

Conflict coaching or Dignity at Study

Brunel’s Student Services offer a variety of ways of helping resolve your grievance.

Check out the table inside which gives you information about which service may be best for you. For further information, contactservices, All these are free of charge, or

and available on campus to all registered students.

Or find out more online, via Please recycle.

Con ict Coaching is a con den al, informal support service for




Monday 27th Feb


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2012 h t 1 1 h c r 27th-Ma y r trade a r u i r a f b / e F m o c dents. u t s l e n u r b

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February 2012 - Le Nurb FEATURES

Boris - “I Love Brunel” The man, the plan, the saviour! Peter Smallwood As Mayor of London, Boris’ focus on improving people’s lives has brought about long overdue improvements to transport, increased police numbers, reduced crime and kept the cost of living down - while investing in new opportunities for London’s future. This has had benefits for Londoners from all walks of life with the creation of new opportunities through the apprenticeship program, freezing City Hall’s share of council tax for a fourth consecutive year, and growing local economies through the Mayor’s Outer London Fund. Boris has been committed to moving the capital forward, making it a better place to both work and live. But, it is important to appreciate the city Boris Johnson inherited in 2008. When Boris was elected, Londoners were tired of Ken Livingstone’s Mayoralty, which was riddled with divisiveness and cronyism. They were tired of his record of rising crime, record hikes in Mayoral council tax, a transport system that could not cope because of underinvestment, lack of housing, green spaces under threat - and they were worried about preparations for the 2012 Olympics. Boris promised to work day and night to turn things around, and in the last four years he has delivered on that promise. Understandably, transport is a central concern for thousands of Londoners who depend on public transport every day of the year. For years, Londoners suffered because of a lack of investment

by Ken Livingstone, preventing overdue upgrades to the transport network and restricting services across the capital. Since becoming Mayor, Boris has made investing in transport key to growing the economy and he has won significant investment to keep London moving in the right direction. Services that have made travel easier for passengers have been protected, and in places expanded with London’s first orbital rail, London Overground and the construction of Crossrail, and hundreds of bus routes expanded and/or improved. Safety on transport has also improved, with Tube crime down by 11%, bus crime reduced by 30% and violence on buses has fallen by 21%. Safety goes beyond London’s transport; during the 2008 election Boris promised to deliver a safer city by putting more police officers on local streets and combat youth violence, after Ken Livingstone allowed crime to steadily increase - with 27 youths murdered in May 2007. Boris has cut crime over 10% since May 2008, with robberies down 16.9%. 11,000 knives have been taken off the streets and murders are at their lowest level since 1978. Additionally, by May there will be 1,000 more police officers on the street and a more visible, more approachable police force, thanks to the introduction of single patrolling, which has created one million more patrols annually. These improvements have come while keeping Londoners’ costs in check. To keep the cost of living down, Boris has frozen City Hall’s share of council tax for three consecutive years, and is set to cut the tax in 2012. This has saved every London household over £445 when compared to Ken

Livingstone’s continuous rises – increasing 153% over eight years. And Boris is helping to stimulate local economies through his £50 million Outer London Fund to support the capital’s High Streets and small businesses. Opportunity has always been a key to London’s success, and while investing in transport and keeping the cost of living down, Boris has also prioritised the creation of new opportunities for Londoners. Boris partnered with local businesses to create more youth employment opportunities, with over 40,000 new apprenticeships already established and 100,000 apprenticeships to be reached by the end of 2012. Boris also started his Team London programme to mobilise an army of volunteers across the capital, improving life

through programmes aimed at reducing crime, increasing youth opportunities and improving quality of life by cleaning, greening and building stronger neighbourhoods. The programme has already generated 63,000 volunteers across the city and an additional 10,000 volunteers will be added by May. Boris is also on record for saying “I Love Brunel” and was very excited to meet over 30 Brunel students in October. Boris is a man who will stand up for Brunel and the local area. As Mayor he has made countless visits to the area, unlike Ken, who in eight years as Mayor spent more time in Havana, Cuba, than Hillingdon. This election offers a choice between Ken Livingstone’s underinvestment, waste and

inattention - and Boris Johnson’s focus on improving peoples’ lives. Working with all of London’s Boroughs and Londoners – whatever their background or politics – Boris has made the necessary investments in transport, cut crime by putting more police on the beat, frozen his share of the council tax every year while protecting key services, and created new opportunities for thousands of Londoners. With more work to do, Boris Johnson’s fresh thinking, energy and commitment will keep London moving in the right direction. Boris is the sort of guy who attracts people to politics from all backgrounds and walks of life! So come on, let’s join together and Back Boris.

Peter Smallwood Spot the Boris.

Can Ken win his title back? Politics student, thankfully not everything that implies. Jerome Neil A recent ComRes poll shows Labour’s Ken Livingstone is ahead of incumbent Tory mayor Boris Johnson for the first time since receiving his party’s nomination for the London mayoralty. Whilst Tory commentators have presumed that re-election for Johnson was a certainty, Ken has been putting together a radical set of policies. These policies plan to protect ordinary Londoners from the tough times we have received as a result of the Conservative-led government. This has certainly shifted the momentum firmly behind Ken. Under this Tory mayor, the average bus fare has gone up by 56% – for those of us who commute into university that can mean having to go without books and equipment that are essential to our education. That’s why Ken has pledged that when he comes

to office not only will he reverse Johnson’s most recent 5.5% increase in fares, but he will deliver a cut of 7% which will place an average of £800 into the pockets of Londoners over four years. Over the past two years, 1,700 police officers have been made unemployed by Johnson, at a time when violent crimes have been on the rise. Ken has been calling on the mayor to reverse this decision for months, leading the way with his Save Our Sergeants campaign. Under Ken, London would be a safer city because he would ensure more police officers were on our streets. If elected Ken has pledged to introduce a living rent that would ensure landlords could not charge more than a third of their tenant’s income. Students run the risk of being abused by exploitative landlords and unlike Boris, Ken is determined to ensure that the most vulnerable are protected. It’s little surprise that the Tory Party has lined Boris Johnson up for a safe seat in 2015 with a record as dire as his. For the past four years

Amplified Will Ken win? he has been squatting in City Hall, taking credit for initiatives that Ken introduced, while waiting for a crack at his party’s leadership – it’s as if his career means more to him Please recycle.

than our city. In contrast Ken has been an outspoken critic of his own party on issues such as housing and most famously the Iraq War. There is only one candidate in

this race who understands the concerns of the ordinary, hardworking Londoner and that man is Ken Livingstone. I urge you to vote for him on May 3rd.

February 2012 - Le Nurb FEATURES


A real alternative for Londoners Politics student, enjoys festivals and reading. Joshua Dixon For many, it may have been a little underwhelming to see it was business as usual when the three major party candidates for London’s Mayoral election in 2012 were the same as in 2008. However, I believe it will be a very different contest this time round; the stakes could not be higher. Brian Paddick of 2012 is very different to the Brian Paddick of 2008. He himself has said he is more disciplined and ready to take the fight to a disappointing Boris, and has-been Ken. The campaign is far more professional this time round and will be like no Liberal Democrat campaign ever seen in London before. But more importantly in this election are the issues themselves. I doubt many Londoners casting

their votes in May will be able to forget the impact of the London riots last year and the way they were dealt with by the Mayor. For a Mayor to fail to quickly return to London to deal with such a crisis is unbelievable, especially when London was crying out for leadership. I believe that Brian Paddick would have been more than prepared for such a crisis. Not only is he the only candidate of the three to not have spent his life outside of politics, he was also Deputy Assistant Commissioner of the London Metropolitan Police. He has the experience and knowledge needed to keep Londoners safe and if London was led by Brian during those damaging days in 2011, he would have used his past experience of dealing with an outbreak of rioting. He saw firsthand how the riots of Brixton in 1981 were on the verge of outbreak, but he knew that a large police presence and a containment of the rioting in a single area was the best

medicine to stop it spreading. Brian also has fantastic ideas concerning London transport, including a much needed onehour bus ticket, early bird fares and part-time travel cards to help put money back into the pockets of Londoners and commuters. As well as this, he has a housing plan to help up to 250,000 Londoners, by releasing free land owned by government agencies, the Mayor and council through “community trusts.” Brian is also exploring how to extend civil liberties, which have too long been eroded by successive Tory and Labour regimes. Such radical plans are just a few reasons as to why London needs Brian. When Brunelians go to the polls, I hope they remember, although it’s currently fashionable to hate the Liberal Democrats, Brian is a man who has stood up for London outside of politics and would do just the same inside politics as Mayor of London.

Liberal Democrats Police and politics.

Take me away from my television Tellymix

Pompous, pointy Disney villain. Rhys Morgan-Jones I’m not normally the kind of man who holds a grudge. I’ve been getting increasingly incensed however, by the complicated affair I’ve been having with my housemate (I love/hate you too Rob). At times cold and unfeeling (thanks - Rob), but often determined to keep me in the room at all costs (thanks - Rob), headache or no headache, our television is a cruel mistress (... - Rob). But by far, its most devious attraction of late is ITV’s Take Me Out. Simultaneously repulsive and desperately engaging, it demonstrates to a tee the public schadenfreude that we are constantly encouraged to take part in. The whole point of the show is that men line up to take part in a sort of mock trial in front of a battalion of ladies of questionable taste. The men tell the aforementioned ladies about themselves, and if they don’t find themselves attracted to the poor man (usually not a charmer, it must be said), they declare themselves out by means of a large buzzer. Whilst at first light-hearted, supported by genial northern host Paddy McGuinness, the mood turns rather sour when the man, one of the show’s many victims, is unceremoniously ejected for reasons such as the fact he owns books. “All By Myself,” sing the audience (and the girls who just rejected him), and he traipses away with the smile of a loser at the Oscars. I bang on about this because it seems that intelligence, on the whole, has a very conflicted relationship with my television. More specifically, it seems that intelligence is treated with a sense

“NOO LAHKEY, NO LAHTEE.” Ahem. Sorry, carry on. of mistrust, and when it is shown, it seems to ring false. The recent furore over Steven Moffat’s portrayal of Irene Adler, the adversary of the titular detective in the BBC series Sherlock, is an example. Jane Clare Jones levelled the accusation of ‘the fetishisation of “masculine” reason over pesky “feminine” emotion’. Yet here Moffat is constrained by his source material, Arthur Conan Doyle’s original stories. Whilst Irene Adler, the near-asexual Holmes’ aggressively intelligent “The Woman” marked a phenomenal stride forwards in literary treatment of women in general at the time, it is now rather dated. Assigning intelligence as a supposedly masculine trait is still far more an issue, it seems,

for mainstream media than it is for the general populace. Off the top of my head, I can think of only enough women on television praised primarily for their intelligence to count on a clumsy lumberjack’s hand. All this is almost enough to drag me away from Take Me Out and into alternative forms of media. And yet it’s equally tricky. Comic books are notorious for unnecessarily skimpy costumes on super-powered women whose secondary powers appear to be not getting chilly or self-conscious and not needing armour. Video games, whilst increasingly being regarded as art, often suffer from the same problem. Whilst it is possible to protest that many games have Please recycle.

strong, intelligent female heroines, there is certainly a remarkable correlation between these qualities and extraordinary attractiveness, not to mention cup size. This is perhaps averted in Portal, but Chell, the protagonist, is a heroic mime who we rarely actually see (she doesn’t get to speak). The world of gaming itself seems to get all in a flutter when a girl tries to get in on the action, with men getting all excited when they see a girl who plays games, as if they are a rare butterfly that needs adding to their collection. It becomes the woman’s primary definition. She is a ‘gamer girl’. In what other medium would a female aficionado be primarily defined by this interest? A physics girl, perhaps?

It seems that at the midst of this little pickle lies a form of ugly gender stereotyping that large numbers of both men and women subscribe to, if only for reasons of self-flattery. This is the ascribing of intelligence as a characteristic typical of men or women (depending on whichever one you are), instead of willingly admitting people’s profound (and wonderful) differences. I can’t wait to see some pig-ugly geniuses on my TV screen - or perhaps play a game as a woman without the developers including the ‘consolation prize’ of a rather shapely behind. I can’t see it happening, though, until we collectively refrain from assuming that idiocy is the key ingredient to creating watchable TV.


February 2012 - Le Nurb FEATURES

Brunel pride? Not a chance I have been here too damn long. Ben Moxey I have now been at this university longer than I’ve ever had a relationship, longer than I’ve owned an item of clothing, longer than I’ve had my car and probably longer than some of your memories. For a time in my undergraduate days I lived and breathed Brunel. I had hoodies, shirts, jackets and the lot, all emblazoned with Brunel. My housemate and I would happily get up at 5am on a post-Global Saturday if it meant we could play sport for our uni. Keeno fever: Mark 1. But recently I took a trip to the States and they put that to shame. My girlfriend’s alma mater (a pseudo posh way of saying “my old uni”) is Virginia Tech. For a university who have had as many newsworthy incidents as they have (most notably 2007) and for a team named after a fictitious bird, the Hokie - which looks like the jaunty cousin of the turkey, you might expect them to not sing their praises to highly? Wrong. If you are a VT graduate, you not only get an email monthly from the alumni organisation asking for donations and informing you of projects, but you have a God-

given right to wear orange and maroon at all occasions. They have hoodies, tracksuits, gillets, athletic equipment, replica football jerseys, pyjamas, bears, martini glasses, lunchboxes, dog’s coats, flags, ties, cufflinks and all other manner of crazy crap. You can even get a VT Beer Pong game board. And that’s just graduates. Your parents could have a window sticker, badge, patch or car ornament with ‘VT Dad’ or ‘VT Mom’. There is even one for Granny and Grandpa! The closest this country has come to providing decent marketing to the world is the ubiquitous Oxford and Cambridge hoodies that all the foreign kids wear around London. Kind of like morons from London wear New York Yankees caps despite having never seen a baseball game. It’s cute; you wanna look like Jay-Zed and Snoop DoggingontheA3; I get it. Apart from that, Exeter University ran a campaign in the mid 1990s with a send up of the Carlsberg campaign proclaiming “Exeter University – probably the best university in the world.” And that is it. In this age of students (mistakenly) believing that they are paying for university, that it is a service and they are customers, universities have to work harder to please. Throw into the mix inconsistent NSS methods

across the institutions and new ‘universities’ appearing regularly (University of West London? Who?), it becomes clear that Brunel must advertise itself better and smarter in the coming years. Now the thoughtless ViceChancellor might decide that they need to plaster the uni down the side of buses or to drop a few thousand on a gaudy, dreadful advert to be sandwiched in between a popular teen show like Hollyoaks or Neighbours or ‘I’mjust-watching-it-ironically’ Deal or No Deal. Something like the Solent University clearing ad of 2008 (see this link for more embarrassing details: But many ad strategy types would agree that the best and cheapest way to get your name out there is to get people to wear your stuff. One of the reasons Cambridge is known worldwide is the sheer volume of children from Europe and America who come over and buy the hoodies and return home. Every year, thousands of European school children come to Brunel in the summer when you are all at home enjoying Mummy’s cooking. These kids will spend more on accommodation and summer school fees in a fortnight than you will in your entire year here. Why not throw a free hoodie into the bargain? Let them go home and

do all the free advertising with a complimentary hat, shirt or bag with “BRUNEL UNIVERSITY” emblazoned across it? Why not do it in the University’s colour scheme? Why not? Because the university doesn’t make the kit, the Union does. The biggest difference between the marketing at VT and the marketing here, is that VT owns the brand ‘VT’ and the brand ‘Hokies’. If you want to make a hoody with the logo you need permission. If you want to get a flag or cap, you need to ask them. They get Nike to make the kit and then flog it through the University Bookstore - a shop with an online warehouse as well as multiple physical stores. Other licensed VT gear is sold through countless other stores for fans around the entire state and around the world. I bought my VT hoody from Amazon. What do we do? We have the Reception Supervisor of the Union who thanklessly sits down before graduation and sifts through catalogues picking out stuff to buy so that it can be sold there. If you want to buy stash outside of graduation then you have to visit a shoddy website with a very poor menu system and very out-dated stash. Why can’t we give free stuff to the hoards of Italian kids who come to stay? Because no one

thinks to order enough and to cost it to the right place. Why can’t we have things emblazoned with the words “BRUNEL UNIVERSITY” or the crest? Because the crest is dead and there is no catchy official logo that is licenced by anyone. Why not do it in the official University colours? Because there aren’t any. When I started we seemed to like royal blue, white and brown. Then it became blue and white. Then blue and white with a hint of yellow. Now the website resembles a Dulux colour chart from the ‘emo’ end of the spectrum – lots of grey, blue and purples. If you want to wear your Brunel pride, you have to go online and by and large it is just clothing. When will Brunel realise that there is an army of free advertisers out there -15,000 students, some of whom would love to show off their Brunel pride. Dog collars, ties, shirts, training gear, picture frames, coasters, scrubs, jewellery and so on. These men and women will carry these trinkets and knickknacks into their professional lives. The car sticker in the office car park, the business card holder at a conference, the passport cover at customs. All ways of taking Brunel with you wherever you go around the world. And in turn the world will come back to Brunel.

Life in a celebrity-obsessed world Student who loves coffee, cats and Sundays. Nadia Henderson As I scrolled through the stories on my favourite gossip website last week, my jaw dropped at the news that showbiz’s golden couple, singer Seal and supermodel Heidi Klum, had decided to separate. How could this be? I asked myself. They’d been so in love – they were the couple you could count on staying together forever. I discussed the matter at length with my friends, pouring over the details in an attempt to form a complete picture in my mind of what exactly happened to cause Heidi and Seal to fall out of love. It was as I moved on to discussing the events leading up to Demi Moore’s marital breakdown that I suddenly realised I was talking about people that I’ve never met, who don’t know me, and who I am unlikely to ever encounter. Demi’s severe weight loss and Ashton’s cheating lies actually have no effect on me whatsoever. It is a bizarre notion that I should feel such sympathy and emotion towards events that, for all I know, could be entirely fabricated or at the very least elaborated for entertainment and publicity purposes. That we live in a world where Kim Kardashian’s name is as widely recognised as, say, Nelson Mandela’s, is pretty

disheartening. Our television channels, newspapers, websites and magazines are dominated by a breed of untouchables whom we worship and vilify in equal measure. Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Cheryl Cole, Ryan Gosling… really, they are all normal people who get spots, go to the toilet and need to shower to smell nice. But we idolize them to the point where they almost cease to be real anymore. Take Kim Kardashian for example – accused of having a fake marriage and divorce to boost views on her TV show. But was it really fake? We’ll never know. Nor should we care, but we do – enough to bank Kim a neat $40k per episode. Keeping Up With The Kardashians rakes in millions of viewers every season. Whether we love her, hate her, want to be her or want to kill her, we’re tuning in. In short, our obsession with celebrity culture is keeping these people afloat. Then there are the talentless drones of The Only Way Is Essex, Made In Chelsea and other such “reality” shows. Amy Childs, famous for a horrible permatan and a distasteful fashion sense; Jessica Wright, wishing peace to the late Kim Jong Il via Twitter. There comes a point where these people cross the line between harmless TV personality and genuine threat to the nation’s collective state of mind. What is particularly irritating is that these brain-dead nobodies

are lavished with exciting career opportunities such as TV presenting, modelling, writing and acting without having worked hard to get there, and often having not a single iota of talent in that area. They become self-made celebrities, entrepreneurs, even. They are paid to endorse brands, write autobiographies, host chat shows, design clothes – ventures that require immeasurable hard work and perseverance from the average Joe. They receive these opportunities because, as a brand, they are guaranteed to sell. Celebrity culture, it seems, never goes out of fashion. This sentiment became startlingly real to me on a recent show, Bigger Than…Lady Gaga. The programme, marketed as a fun, harmless contest, aimed to find a Gaga fan and transform her into a carbon copy of the lady herself. Out of a handful of misfits, two hard-core Gaga fans were chosen, and sent to battle head-to-head for the prize. The duo underwent a gruelling physical overhaul, which saw them follow everything down to the diet of the world famous singer, at its worst consisting of three jars of baby food a day. And despite it all, Louise, the eventual winner, blubbed, “I just want to be respected the way Lady Gaga is respected.” It is a sad facet of the human condition that some children grow up without sufficient nurturing, and are left to seek solace in a world where everything appears Please recycle.

Techcrunch50 Obsession? glamorous, perfect and fun. But it is the media’s perpetual bombardment and glorification of the rich and famous, as well as our continuous consumption of it, which sustains it. In the same way as politicians have, celebrities have acquired the power of influence. TV shows use them to catch our attention, clothing lines and cosmetic brands appropriate their names to shift stock. When

did we become so hooked on celebrity life? And how can we get clean? The fact of the matter is we probably never will. While there’s money to be made and stories to sell the demand for celebrity culture will continue to grow. We can only hope that, like happy slapping, Chatroulette and High School Musical, it will one day lose its appeal.

February 2012 - Le Nurb FEATURES


Someone is stealing my milk! I always have something to say - I am a creative writer. Katrina Muhly For anyone living in student accommodation, February is about the time of year when we start to feel quite comfortable with our flat mates – or housemates if we’re off-campus. We’ve survived a term with them and have developed a relationship as cohabitants. We know what time people usually cook, what they like to eat, and who we can rely on to clean up after themselves. But sometimes, people get too comfortable. I’m talking about the biggest problem of living in student accommodation: food thieves. My flat in Isambard was great from the start of tenancy in September until just this week in February. My flat mates and I all got along really well and didn’t have any problems. It’s for this reason that I was so surprised when food in our kitchen suddenly started to go missing, not just from me but nearly everyone in my flat. This is my story of what happened: On Friday, I bought a 4-pint carton of semi-skimmed milk from Tesco. Usually I get fat-free milk, but I decided to indulge this week. When I got home, I put this new carton right where the old one had been; there were no other 4-pint Tesco semi-skimmed milks in the fridge. By Monday

morning, after two breakfasts and maybe a glass to drink, the milk was over halfway gone. I consume a lot of milk in the average week, but this was definitely faster than usual. By Tuesday morning, I was down to 1/3 of the carton... I was suspicious, so I noted that the milk was level with the bottom of the label after breakfast. When I came back to the fridge around dinnertime, the milk was well below the label. Someone was stealing my milk. At first, I wrote an angry note in the kitchen, asking the thief to please stop! One of my flat mates noticed and said that she’d saw some food go missing too. I posted about this on Facebook and another flat mate said the same thing. It wasn’t just my milk, I realised, but a bit of everyone’s food or drink. We had a food thief amongst us. I gave everyone in the flat a day to read my note so we were aware of the situation; in the mean time, I started thinking about what might have caused this and how it can now be prevented. My first thought: The cupboards provided in student accommodation can, quite honestly, be a bit pants. Out of the 10 cupboards in my flat that had locks, only two had latches that worked, keeping the door securely closed. I filed with maintenance to have mine fixed, and the latch worked for maybe a month before it broke again. For dried goods, locked cupboards ensure that your food remains yours, and this

is obvious step for some of my flat mates to take if they’ve noticed a few tins gone missing. My second thought, which I mentioned before: People get comfortable. When you’re friends with someone, it’s easier to think that they’d be okay with lending you a bit of milk for a tea until you’re able to get more... but what happens when they’re out of the house and you need it now? By January, you’re all friends, so cupboards are mostly unlocked. And with such easy access to everyone’s food, I’d imagine it’s easy to help yourself, convinced that they wouldn’t mind. You’ll ask next time, right? The problem in my flat is that it has started happening to a lot of people and a lot of their food; a little bit of milk here and there turns into pints and, eventually, a lot of wasted money. And that is overstepping the common courtesy of friendship, if someone from within is stealing. So what am I going to do to resolve my milk problem? If I don’t see changes in a week as a result of my note, my culprit is going to find him- or herself drinking a little more than milk. Just saying. Nothing unsafe or illegal, but something unexpected to deter them from stealing in the future. It also occurred to me that maybe the flat cleaners could be “borrowing” milk once in a while for their teas. If this is the case, or if the food theft in the flat continues, then I will go to the hall mentors and we’ll all have

CatPolice Jog on! a chat to try to resolve this. This same situation seems to happen in student accommodation every year, and my first advice to anyone whose flat or house is having problems is to just talk it over. We’ve all probably taken a bit of milk or slice of bread at some point; sometimes these things just escape us after a busy week.

Just remember that it never hurts to ask first; friends are more than likely to help you out if you’re really in a bind. But if you’re one of the chronic thieves who lives off the food that honest people have spent money on, remember this: Some people drink straight from their cartons.

Do our drinking habits really put us in danger? English and Creative Writing student with a passion for music and travel. Vanessa Gibbs You hear it everywhere - from your mum, the media and maybe even your friends. Young people, university students especially, are putting their lives at risk through the on-going overconsumption of alcohol. But is it really that bad? Not many people consider themselves to be binge drinkers, but binge drinking can be as little as four drinks for a woman and five for a man. We’re all aware of the negative effects that alcohol can have on us. But the only ones we really worry about are the sudden depletion of our student loans, the unexplainable bruises the next morning, and maybe, if we’re really lucky, the remorse and embarrassment of the walk of shame or waking up on your bathroom floor. But alcohol is a drug and can seriously damage our bodies. We all know the basics like liver damage, heart failure and cancer. What about the more abstract? Like an increase in the female

hormone oestrogen in men, which can lead to loss of body hair, muscle mass and even a decrease in testicular size. Maybe that will grab the boy’s attention more than liver failure will. Heavy drinking can also damage the mind. We’ve all experienced the familiar thumping head the next morning or maybe a few parts of the night we can’t quite remember, but more seriously, alcohol can cause long term memory loss, anxiety, depression and even premature dementia. This doesn’t just apply to the long term; just one day of heavy drinking can impact abstract thinking for thirty days. So no more pre-exam piss ups. It’s not just the health impacts that arise from student drinking. The media cover stories everyday about the on-going violence and dangerous situations of bingedrinking youths. Rape, fighting, anti-social behaviour and deaths are all common headlines. Heavy drinking doesn’t just put the binger in danger. There’s no question that everyone is made fully aware of the health and negative social impacts alcohol is having. So why do we keep on drinking? Is it

because we believe the positive social benefits outweigh the negative consequences? Our improved dancing – often not the case – overshadows any risks that may arise later on. Or maybe that’s exactly the case, we’re just not thinking about the later on, and besides, it’ll never happen to us right? Maybe it’s not the amount students are drinking that’s putting them in danger but the risk-taking, “I’m invincible” or “this’ll be funny” kind of attitude that goes along with it. Maybe it’s just that university students get more attention from the media because of their drinking habits and therefore the effects are amplified and exaggerated. True, it is hard to find someone on campus that never drinks, but does that really mean that we’re all alcoholics? And yes, many of us have stopped throwing up long enough to utter the ageless line “I’m never drinking again” and honestly, who’s really stuck to that? But again, we don’t continue to drink because we’re dependant on our booze and its dance enhancing properties. Back to the impossible question: is it really that bad? There’s no Please recycle.

Blurred Light Galleries “I’ll just have one tonight...” doubt that binge drinking carries a considerable amount of risks for our health and the people around us. And even if these are amplified by the media, they are still there and can happen to any one of us. But, can we really change the campus culture and would we ever put that glass down? I suppose binge

drinking is like everything else, it carries its risks but it is ultimately up to us if we’re prepared to make them or not. And hey, every cloud has a silver lining. 1-2 glasses of wine or beer a day can decrease your risk of cardiovascular diseases… oh, nothing about vodka then.


February 2012 - Le Nurb FEATURES

Student relationships English and Creative Writing student who loves to shop ‘til sunset and party ‘til sunrise! Hayley Baldwin This month, Cupid shot his arrows into many singletons. Those who cannot stand the day are usually stereotyped as the miserable husband or the lonely spinster, but Valentine’s Day can also be tough for those in great relationships. It is thought that if you are in a good relationship, February 14 is a day full of romantic gestures, overpriced flowers, and cards as sickly as the chocolates. But as many of you will know, it can be dreaded more than the singletons. University brings many challenges and one of the hardest is being away from your partner. Frequent phone conversations and messages over Skype don’t quite live up to the ideal situation. However, being at university with your partner can be just as stressful. It’s hard to spend time with each other whilst making friends, taking part in other activities, and working towards deadlines can mean dates at the library, and curling up on the sofa to watch...a documentary. These couples all have different situations and have been together long enough to experience the highs and lows of university relationships. Abbie & Hannah 2½ years in a relationship. Same hometown, different universities. Both Abbie and Hannah are from South East London, and are university students. Abbie began her studies here in 2009, whilst Hannah started at University of Sussex in September. Their usual five-minute drive from each other during the holidays has now expanded into a three-hour train journey. Abbie says it took them about a month to adjust to their situation, but Hannah’s Fresher’s week was the hardest.“Suddenly it changed for me, my situation was the same, but now I couldn’t get hold of her” because of poor signal and no internet connections, which made her worry. She also found it difficult because she had never met Hannah’s flatmates, but adds: “Now I know them it is much easier, I know she is safe.” However,

if-all-went-right Who says it can’t work...? they like the fact that they are not in each other’s pockets. “We have our own lives, but still love spending time with each other.” They also believe their situation could be worse, “We know couples that live together at university, and when they go home they find it really hard because that’s their time off; they don’t have work to do, yet they can’t see each other.” When Abbie graduates, she thinks it will challenge their relationship further. She needs to job hunt, so does not know how often she will be able to visit Hannah because of time and money, but both are determined it will work. Charlotte & Jamie 2½ years in a relationship. One in university, one out. The most common relationship situation for students is probably when one partner is at university and one is not. Charlotte and Jamie’s relationship began at

Brunel almost 3 years ago. Charlotte was in her first year, but Jamie was in his last and graduated in 2011. When Charlotte returned to Brunel the following September, they had to adapt to seeing each other only at the weekends, which they found difficult to begin with. Charlotte said, “you just have to get used to a new routine,” and so they adjusted fairly quickly. Their weekly reunions mean a lot of travelling by public transport, which they find difficult because of the cost and hassle. Nevertheless they love that they look forward to seeing each other, and it allows them to focus on their own work and spend time with their friends during the week. Whilst being in a long-distant relationship, Charlotte has learned “to value the time spent together, but also to enjoy aspects of university individually”, which is something Jamie can understand, having been at Brunel himself. Despite not

Tabby & Chris 2½ years in a relationship. Same hometown, same university. Tabby and Chris are from Bournemouth and got together just before starting at Brunel. They both like that they are together at home and at university. “It doesn’t feel like we’re living two lives,” says Chris. But, they still have their own space. They have never chosen to live with each other whilst at university, but they still live closely. Tabby feels a major benefit of having your partner at university is the “emotional support” available “when stress

is high,” and Chris says, “Tabby’s food is good!” Apart from Chris always raiding Tabby’s cupboards, they say things can be difficult. They are both in their third year, and find it hard to juggle seeing each other and coping with the workload. Tabby also says “when I’m homesick and see Chris, it makes me feel worse because it reminds me of home a bit more.” Being at Brunel together has taught them how to prioritise their work and time with each other, and they have realised how important communication is in a relationship. They are also confident that they could live together, and look forward to getting their own place. Tabby and Chris’ relationship has survived through an important, stressful part of their lives, and they believe their relationship will improve even more once they leave Brunel.


Free Brunel

From February 27 to March 2 the Christian Union are running Free Brunel, a completely free week of events. The name isn’t just because the event is free to attend (or because there will be free food provided!), but also because we believe that there are lots of things that hold us back in life – such as stress, regrets, unfulfilment and so on, and through the forgiveness that Jesus still brings to our lives today we can be free from them. The events will address this topic and provide

being from the same hometown, they are sure their relationship will benefit when Charlotte graduates. Jamie has recently bought a house which they are refurbishing together, so when Charlotte hands back her Brunel keys in a few months, she will own a new set for her home with Jamie.

an opportunity to find out what it means to be free. We hope that you can join us at any of our events over the week. You will be most welcome to come fill your stomachs and hear about what we believe and maybe find some answers for yourself.

Send us your features article: Le Nurb accepts submissions from any Brunel student. Full details on page 2.

FIND OUT MORE To find out about Free Brunel or for further contact information, visit Please recycle.

February 2012 - Le Nurb ADVERTISEMENT | THE ARC

This month’s ARC updates...

Housing Fayre We hope you enjoyed the hugely successful Housing Fayre on February 7. If you have any feedback, send it via the UBS Facebook page.

Contract Checks One World Week

Looking for a property for next year? Don’t forget to make an appointment to bring your contract to be checked by the ARC.  It is important to do this BEFORE you sign it, as once you have signed, you are bound by the terms. See our contact details below, or our website for more info.

Look out for the ARC stall at the One World Week World Fayre on 22nd February. Lots of advice and information on a whole range of issues will be available.

Who are we? The ARC (Advice and Representation Centre) is run by the Union of Brunel Students. We are a team of professional advisers and provide confidential, independent, and free advice. We can also refer you to external agencies, and departments within the University.

Exam Awareness Campaign The ARC and UBS will be running a campaign in the lead up to, and during, exam weeks in May. Watch out for lots of info on why you need to avoid taking revision notes into exams (and what happens if you do it and get caught)!

We can support you in almost any area associated with the practicalities of student life. If you are a registered, suspended or prospective student of Brunel University, then you are welcome to use our free service.

Where to find out more

We want to make a difference to your life at University!

Call us: 01895 269169 Email us: Find us online: Please check our website for the most up-to-date opening times.

Union of Brunel Students

@brunelstudents Please recycle.




One World Week (OWW) is one of the biggest cultural events within the Brunel annual calendar, and with over 170 different nationalities residing at Brunel we have much to share and celebrate. Over the five days of OWW the campus comes alive through a series of parades and performances, cultural exhibitions and workshops, debates and discussions, a whole host of sports and activities, as well as celebrations and night events, all catered towards celebrating our community. It’s an entirely non-profit initiative, involving the whole of campus and our local community, in its aim to encourage awareness of and positive action on issues which affect our One World. One World Week is “a celebration of Brunel’s strong community”. It aims to increase engagement and cohesion in the celebration of Brunel’s diverse community, create a fun, inclusive and engaging environment to improve the student, staff and local community experience, encourage students, staff and the local community alike to share their unique experiences, and help to educate others about cultures, values and aspirations often different from their own”.


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. . . N O S ’ T A H W


the americas

12.00–13.00 // One World Parade // Concourse Come and join us in the official One World Week Launch event: The World Parade! This will be a streak of colour along the concourse to announce the arrival of the biggest cultural event at Brunel University! The concourse will be full of loud music, bands, performers, flags and exciting freebies.

11.00-16.00 // Brunel Men’s Football presents Euro 2012 6 a side Tournament// Multi Pitch 12.00-13.00 // Zumba class // Amenities Building 12.00–14.00 // Brunel RCCS presents “Can’t Cook? Won’t Cook?” // Quad 11.30-15.30 // Staff Open Office Competition // Around Campus

One World Book Exchange // Hamilton Atrium SALIDAA display // Library Ground Floor OWW Photo Competition 2012 - “The Brunel Eye” // Campus

18.00-20.00 // Olympic Quiz Night // Locos

11.00-14.00 // Women’s Cricket presents “Twister King” // Quad 11.00-15.30 // World Fayre // Newton Room

15.00-17.00 // Badminton Taster Session // Sports Hall

11.00-16.00 // Scuba Diving Taster Session // Quad

17.00-18.00 // Ahlubayt Society presents “The Clash of Cultures” // LC 062

12.00-14.00 // TamBrunel Workshop // Quad

18.00-20.00 // Islamic Society presents “The Universal Message of Islam: One World: One Creator” // LC B


12.30-13.00 // Ecumenical Service for Ash Wednesday // The Meeting House

12.00–17.00 // Krishna Consciousness presents “Under the Musical Influence “// Quad

13.30 // Arts Centre presents “Singing for Fun” // Arts Centre Atrium

12.00–14.00 // Women’s Rugby presents “Hawaiian Rugby Tournament” // Quad

12.30-15.30 // Women’s Hockey Host Women’s Dodgeball Tournament Demonstration // Netball Hall

12.00–15.00 // Staff Open Office Competition // Around Campus

13.00-14.00 // Zumba Class // Amenities building

15.30-16.30 // Cheerleading Squad presents the Ultimate Human Pyramid Contest // Quad

13.00–15.00 // The Poker Society presents “Taste of Las Vegas” // Locos

13.00–16.00 // Henna Art Tattooing // Locos

16.00-17.00 // Brunel Dance presents Bollywood Dance workshop // The Academy

13.10 // The Arts Centre presents “Creative Writing Open Session” // Arts Centre Studio

13.10 // The Arts Centre presents “Flock” // Arts Centre Atrium

17.00-21.00 // Friends of Palestine presents “Stand up for Palestine” // LC E

15.00–15.45 // Samba Drumming Workshop // Hamilton Atrium

14.00-15.00 // Mixed UniHoc Tournament hosted by Men’s Hockey // Sports Hall

17.15 // Roman Catholic Mass for Ash Wednesday // The Meeting House

17.00 // The Arts Centre Presents “The Gospel Choir Open Rehearsal” // Arts Centre Studio

15.00-17.00 // Martial Arts demonstrations // Exercise Studio

19.00-21.00 // Brunel Somali Society presents “Cultural Night” // LC 061

15.00-15.15 // Zumba 15 minute Workshop // Amenities Building

19.45 // Arts Centre presents “Clearly Classical” // Howell Theatre

15.30-15.45 // Zumba 15 minute Workshop // Amenities Building

22.00 - Late // Afro Soul // The Academy

17.30-19.30 // TRF Brunel’s World Food Night // The Meeting House 18.00-20.00 // Haiti Workshop // LC 114 18.00–20.00 // BUMS Mountaineering Experience // LC 005 18.00-20.00 // The Entrepreneur Society presents “Your Charisma Coach” // LC C 19.00-20.30 // Circus Society presents “Try it yourself Circus skills” // Quad 20.30-21.30 // Circus Society presents “Fire Poi Show” // Quad 22.00 – Late // Mardi Gars Carnival Theme Night hosted by The Hellenic Society // The Academy

TUESDasiaAY& The

middle east

09.00–17.00 // Fresh Fish Sale // Concourse 09.00–17.00 // Sweet Stall // Hamilton Atrium 09.00–17.00 // Fruit and Veg Market // The Academy 10.00–11.45 // Zumba Demo // Concourse

17.00-18.30 // Put a Spring into your Step with Trampolining Club // Sports Hall 18.00 // Arts Centre presents “Acting for Beginners” // Arts Centre Studio 18.00-20.00 // Brunel RAG presents “Take Me Out” // The Academy 18.00–20.00 // Entrepreneur society presents “The Showcase event” // LC C 19.00–21.30 // Christian Union Presents “Text a Pancake”// Campus 19.00-22.00 // Persian Society presents Shisha Night // The Hub 19.00-22.00 // Iranian Music Night // Newton Room

15.00-16.00 // Brunel Dance presents “Salsa Dance Workshop” // The Academy



9.00-16.00 // First Aid Africa Charity Car Wash // Wilfred Brown Car Park

11.00-16.00 // The Brunel International Food Fayre // Hamilton Atrium & Locos

9.30-16.00 // French Maths Café// JC101 Maths Department

22.00 - Late // One World Music Fest // The Academy


9.00-17.00 // Nuts and Fudge Stall // Concourse 10.00-16.00 // First Aid Africa Cake Sale // LC 10.00-17.00 // Islamic Exhibition // The Academy 11.00-16.00 // Nordic Society presents “Welcome to Scandinavia” // Hamilton Atrium 12.00-13.00 // Ultimate Frisbee Match // Sports Hall 12.30-14.30 // Brunel Grad School presents “World Snacks Afternoon” // Graduate School Common Room 13.00-15.00 // Women’s Tournament // Sports Hall


13.10 // Arts Centre presents “Lunchtime Concert with Brunel’s Music Award Soloists” // Robert’s Room

11.00-15.00 // Saudi Arabian Exhibition // The Academy

13.00-16.00 // Netball presents “European Cake Sale” // Atrium

11.00-16.00 // RAG Bungee Jump // Bishops Green

13.00-14.00 // World Fashion Show – One World One Peace // MORE Refectory

11.30-14.00 // Psych Society presents “Stereotyping” // Concourse

14.00-15.00 // Table Tennis Workshop// Exercise Studio

11.30-15.00 // First Aid Africa BBQ // Quad

14.00-15.00 // Jujitsu Demonstration // Quad

12.00-13.00 // Olympic Tournament // Sports Hall


12.30-14.00 // Interfaith Forum // The Meeting House 12.30 - 15.00 // Judo Demonstration // Concourse 13.10 // Arts Centre presents “Flock” // Arts Centre Atrium

11.00–16.00 // Pakistan Employers Recruitment Fair // Newton Rooms

18.00-20.00 // RAG Kareoke Night // The Hub

10.00-15.00 // Brunel Equestrian presents “Chase me Charlie” // Quad

22.00 - Late // Desi Beats // The Academy


15.00-17.00 // Mini Tennis Workshop // Sports Hall

13.30 // Arts Centre presents “Femmes Fatales and Friends” // Arts Centre Studio

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17.00-20.00 // JSOC presents Jewish Shabbat Dinner // The Meeting House 19.00-23.00 // Acoustic Live Music Night // The Hub 22.00 // One World Week Finale “Global” // The Academy



February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS

Five love songs for this month

Lewis Sluman Paramore – “The Only Exception” This actually the most played song on my iTunes, I love it that much. The guitar part is something you just want to sway to and they are amazing live.

Savage Garden – “Truly, Madly, Deeply” An absolute classic, which I believe was used in the Leonardo Di Caprio remake of Romeo & Juliet. Great lyrics about the earth and love being all encompassing – how can you refuse that?

Barry White – “You’re the First, the Last, My Everything” Upbeat love songs are hard to

come by, but this one just make It impossible not to dance with your partner. Not in a country and western kind of way, but a loving bop around the floor.


Frank Sinatra – “Strangers In The Night” You have to respect the old school. This song is absolutely amazing, fantastic music and lyrics. Sinatra is undeniable.

Jason Mraz – “I’m Yours” The staple of what each modern day acoustic song needs to rival and better, it will be hard to beat though. ‘I’m Yours’ is the perfect summer song during a trip away, sunshine. How I miss it! Sinatra flies lovers to the moon this Valentine’s Day.

The cosy show

Lewis Sluman The Cosy Show is a monthly live entertainments show which encompasses the latest talent in comedy, music and poetry. The show, presented by comedian and host Axel, got a good response on the night and even had some of the audience in tears, through laughter of course. First on the bill was poetry from Jodi Ann Bickley, hailing from Midlands ane performing three poems. The young wordsmith failed at times to retain the entirety of the audience during her opening poem but blew the audience away towards the back end of the performance. A quirky but shy lass, she enticed the odd spontaneous clap in agreement to her words or fist punch with her smart punch lines about her trials and tribulations with love. After two rounds of applause, funnyman Axel introduced singer/ songwriter Kaleem Taylor. To the surprise of most onlookers, Taylor took to the stage with his guitar players and professed his desire to use the toilet and reluctance to be performing. Perhaps not the best choice of words before a live performance to university students. Although bewildered,

the audience remained expectant. There is no disputing the talent of Taylor, whose soulful voice sneaked through and rippled sections of the audience, but this didn’t happened nearly enough, as nerves appeared to get the better of the singer. The native West-Londoner has single ‘Blow Out’ on the BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra playlists, so expect to hear a lot more from the soulful 20 year-old. Resident DJ for the Cosy Show, DJ Semo, had the crowd going between each act, playing the freshest and latest in urban music. Next on stage was comedian Fumnbi from London, who has appeared on MTV for his standup performances. The veteran comic had the crowd in stitches, even evoking hyena-style laughs, chuckles and spontaneous giggles for those who tried – but failed – to remain composed during the east Londoner’s set. The side-splitting material ranged from being a Newcastle fan in the midst of 50,000 Geordies, to asking Africans for directions. The respected comedian has gained fans in the mainstream following appearances alongside Frankie Boyle on the Channel 4 programme Tramadol Nights. A 20-minute interval followed after Fumnbi, which facilitated the distribution of various cans of Red Bulls unleashed on the audience. The popular energy drink went hand in hand with the energetic mix from DJ Semo, the crowd seemed to be in a new lease of life, more energised and dancing to the upbeat tunes. The second instalment of poetry that night came in the form of George the Poet, a thought-provoking poet from Northwest London. The deep poet coerced deep thought from the audience but reiterated his point that he didn’t want to change the way they thought but

Image credit. Name or website only. Any corner black or white text, whatever looks best.

nrkp3 wanted to ensure that they at least thought. Materialism was a theme that penetrated the ears dotted around the Academy as the Cambridge student went through his clever verses in each of the three poems he performed. The poetry scene in London took off massively in 2011 and will continue to do so. This young man will be among the forerunners of the ever emerging poetry scene in what has been dubbed by some as the Year of the Poet. In contrast to the sentiments reflected in the poetry, headline act comedian Slim took to the stage and immediately engaged with the audience and began reeling joke after joke off his seemingly endless line of material. Without revealing too much in anticipation of the other two upcoming tour dates, the subject of women and candles in the bath Please recycle.

had the crowd in the former bus driver’s hands, laughing almost in sync with clapping their hands and stamping their feet. The endless jokes saw the crowd on its feet at times and definitely at its most lively. The headline act gave a five star performance leaving the university students wanting more from the ace comic. Grime MC Lioness followed Slim and performed her infamous SBTV F64, but it was her acapella rap that took the audience but the scruff of the neck. The south London artist told an emotive tale of her own personal experience of teenage pregnancy and gave the crowd an insight into her ordeal and the situation she found herself in. The heartfelt performance moved many and was the penultimate act of the night, before the energetic A.Dot emcee closed the show. Amplify Dot comes from South

London and gave a raw and energetic performance flanked by a hype man who must have indulged in the large of Red Bull fluids available on the night, as he bounced around the stage and supported Amplify Dot on the delivering her punch lines. The performance was polished and energetic, and the female emcee has made headway in 2011 and has her own EP due for release this year called “Short Back and Sides.” She also has her own label, AmpedUP, and has already got exciting grime MC Ice-Kid signed to her label. The show on the whole was packed full of entertainment, lots of laughs and a good atmosphere. Kudos to the Cosy Show team and be sure to catch the next Cosy Show if you want to laugh and listen to live music as well as poetry.

February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS


Kissy sold out

What happened to rock n’ roll?

Lewis Sluman I recently had the pleasure to meet and interview Kissy Sell Out before his sold-out DJ slot at Mega Global, when I walked in he was about to shave his head. Great timing by me! He was a great guy, clearly loves his music and space.

Lewis Sluman A recent official report for the last 12 months tells us that guitar music accounted for a pretty uninspiring three out of every 10 albums sold in the UK. When combined with reports and sales figures that place guitar music sales at a seven-year low, it seems like there is a bit of a rough road ahead for any young student who champions the sounds of alternative music. However, there will always be a good handful of timeless artists who manage to transcend the everchanging fashions of popular music. For all their enduring appeal, it has to be a bit of a worry for me when the figures imply that only a handful of young, talented, alternative artists are breaking through the mainstream barrier. The subject has been the cause of much debate in recent music press, with some rags going as far to suggest that the current climate is the worst ever in which a guitar

LS: I thought I’d raise the subject of space with you. KSO: (baffled) Yes, alright! Do it! LS: I’ve been looking around! KSO: Ahh alright! Here we go, here we go! LS: Well, I was just thinking that, I’ve got a great question that my Dad (true story) wanted me to ask you – if you met Neil Armstrong what would you ask him? KSO: (after what felt like a minute silence) I’d ask him about the equivalence principle. Which is the law in physics, that everything falls at the same rate of acceleration. When you jumped up and down, what was that like? … Sorry you bring up space! LS: Very specific! KSO: If you bring up Astro Physics that’s what I talk like! LS: Well I’m sure that there’ll be some university students watching this. KSO: It is pretty mad though, on one of the Apollo missions they had a feather and a hammer and they dropped them at the same time and they fell at the same time. It’s the reason you float in an airplane, when you go over a kind of hump and you are out of your seat. (off camera, said by Josh – They did an experiment on the moon where they had two DJ’s to drop beats at the same time,

and it happened at exactly at the same time) LS: DANGEROUS. Sounds like a good music video! KSO: Who was it? Was it a trance DJ, they should have left him up there! LS: Well I looked at your shows after this, but I think they are about 3, 4 times bigger than this venue. KSO: ARE THEY? Don’t say that! You’re freaking me out! LS: No, no you’re just building it up, aren’t you. KSO: I never look more than a week ahead in my diary. So I don’t even know what gigs you are talking about. LS: How do your shows compare when you are playing bigger places? KSO: Oh It’s always the same, it’s about the crowd, the crowd decides how big you go. I remember a few years ago, it doesn’t happen terribly often thank goodness (looks for some wood to touch) In Chester or something, and only about ten people were there and they stayed for the entire two hours. LS: Hardcore. KSO: I mean it was wicked, I don’t know it’s all about the audience. If anything sometimes I either love gigs to be like really low ceiling with condensation and stuff or really, really big. I mean, what’s the point of amazing experiences if you’ve got nobody to experience it with?

band can bring out an album. Naturally, this is not the first time that alternative music has been stuck in a rut; scenes come and go like always. The decline of Britpop in the late nineties opened up a malevolent void threatening to suck up alternative music for good. But then, gratefully, bands like the Strokes and Arctic Monkeys leapt onto the scene, bulldozing their way onto Radio 1 playlists and announcing a Rock ’n’ Roll revival in the mainstream. It seems as though it’s going to take something bold and similar to get people excited once more. It would be silly to imply that the problem can be blamed on a sudden lull in talent. There are still some great artists out there creating great music. Yet if the money isn’t rolling in, how can the record labels sustain them, let alone help the promising upstarts who are trying to catch a break? It seems that, for now at least, we

can carry on looking forward to a Christmas soundtrack filled with the likes of one of Simon Cowell’s latest offerings. Living in the digital age – where services like YouTube and Spotify prevail – makes it a little difficult to accurately assess what people are listening to. Illegal downloads play their part, and can probably be held partially, if not, fully responsible for last years addition to the slow decline in album sales year-on-year. I don’t do it myself, preferring a physical CD, but I can see the appeal when an album is around £10 in HMV. But it’s not all doom and gloom on the alternative front. Artists like Odd Future are paving the way for a new scene, and whether you like it or not, the ascent of Dubstep from the underground scene, all to the way to the top of the charts proves that there is still life in alternative music and that new sounds are still to be found.

Music versus piracy

LISTEN TO ‘HOMESICK’, or follow on Twitter via @kissysellout.

The closing of MegaUpload was a landmark ruling for many users.

Music correspondent Lewis Sluman interviews Academy’s latest guest.

Lewis Sluman These two four letter words have carried great controversy in the recent months in regards to piracy over the internet. SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (Protect IP Act) both massively affect the music industry. Regardless that internet giants – including Microsoft, Google, Wikipedia and Facebook – weighed in with their opinion and support against these acts, a degree of internet censorship has started with the removal of MegaUpload, a website where anyone and anybody can upload something for others to download instantly. Simple and effective. There are concerns that this will lead to the shutdown of YouTube’s user submitted content, especially copyrighted music being used without authorisation. Although I read that the music and film industry supports the proposals, I really feel that music has Please recycle.

the most to lose. I fear that if this was to happen, the music industry would greatly suffer. It cannot be estimated how important it is for music to be heard by anyone at any given moment. The generations after my own have rarely had to buy music at any point in their life, so if that free opportunity to listen to music or download it is taken away from them – where is the motivation to actually pay for it? When I was younger I did pay for music; there was little other way to listen to it, and if you wanted it you bought it. If this was to happen once again I could adapt and start buying regularly again instead of Spotify and the like, but I worry that the younger generations would switch off from music. I am also concerned that even for the likes of Justin Bieber and his so many millions hits on each video he produces would take a hit. No longer would songs and their

videos be viral responsibilities of the internet. Would we be able to share this content with others? From as far as I can see, it is mostly Hollywood complaining about their exposure to free and illegal download, and apparent drop in sales. This I cannot comprehend; in the case of Avatar, the most illegally downloaded film of all time, 21 million downloads is most certainly a staggering feat. And it is also number 1 in the most grossed films to date, taking $2.7 billion at the box office. Where is the complaint there? Make quality films, and you make quality money. the product, not the bosses who operate above them. Enough of the politics and music’s constant fight, I just want music to commercially survive this period of economical plight as I’m sure many others do too. I wouldn’t be the same without it.


February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS

Step by step guide to eyebrows Emma I’Anson Over the holidays I was bombarded with “scousebrows” and TOWIE eyebrows and now flicking through the fashion magazines, I see that one of the latest trends on the catwalk and in beauty is the big, bold and beautiful brows. I’ve been pencilling my eyebrows in now for the past year and haven’t gone near a brow bar since summer. I’d love to embrace the big, bushy eyebrows and have my caterpillars back on my face, but they just don’t seem to grow. So to help any of you beautiful ladies out there who suffer like me and have thin brows that rival Christina Aguilera’s in the 00’s, or for those just want to define and shape the perfect brow, I have some tips and tricks for you. The first step to creating a big and beautiful eyebrow is to brush them into shape using a brow brush. You can buy brow brushes in any shop like Superdrug or Boots, or if you already have an eyebrow pencil you may be lucky enough to have a brush on the end of it, like my Rimmel brow pencil. When brushing, you need to ensure that you are brushing upwards and then to the sides to shape the brow. I also find that by doing this daily, it tames any hairs that are going out of place. The next step is to fill your brow in. This can be done with a a brow pencil, powder or even wax. I find it takes time to learn how to shape brows, but practice makes perfect. I recommend having a beautician on a counter help you out if you have never Emma reccomends MAC cosmetics for the perfect look.

Is Emma turning into Lauren Conrad?

Life as an intern Emma I’Anson Lauren Goodger: one of the latest to try the Scouse brow. As some of you may know, I started my internship at Topshop HQ working within the Buying and Styling department on Monday, February 6. While writing this, I have just finished my second day. The past two days have been a whirlwind of sequins, beads, feathers, crosses, clothes, shoes, bags, and well, basically, my idea of heaven. My life so far has been

similar to that of Lauren Conrad in The Hills; it has consisted of a fashion cupboard and I becoming quite close friends, and I am also a pro at steaming clothes now too. Skills to put on the CV include sewing sequins back onto clothes, organising fashion rails, colour co-ordination and much more. On my second day, I was lucky enough to be invited into my departments Product Review session with the people in charge, and it was so interesting hearing about how well lines are doing and what they need to do next. I was also lucky enough to see a few sneak peaks at new lines for Spring/Summer and Autumn/ Winter, but unfortunately I have to keep quite hush-hush about this. What I can tell you is that all the pieces are beautiful. There’s a fair bit of Rihanna and Katy Perry inspired clothing, as well as lace and sequins. The Arcadia HQ is beautiful, with gold staircases, plush seating, walls covered in beautiful fashion. And then there’s the people. Each individual who works in the building drips in stylish clothing (mostly Topshop/ Topman), so it makes it hard to concentrate. The office section

I am in mostly consists of girls with a few guys, but Topman is below so I may have to have a cheeky look at what’s down there before I finish, as I’d like to see how the men dress in the office. Before starting I had this cliché vision of being told to get coffee from Starbucks and collect food and samples from nearby places – kind of like the scenarios in The Devil Wears Prada. But this

hasn’t happened yet, and touch wood, it doesn’t, as being my clumsy self I’d probably end up with coffee down me and the samples. Getting up at 6am every morning isn’t the greatest, and being pushed around on the London tubes makes me want to scream, but when you enter the offices it’s all worth it. I can definitely see myself doing this sort of thing in the future if

drawn on eyebrows before (M.A.C cosmetics is a fantastic place to head to) or check out YouTube for some how-to videos. I’ve dabbled in all the different brow fill-ins and use a mixture every now and again; when I first started filling in, I used a stencil, which helped me learn how to create and fill in the brow, kind of like stabilisers on a bicycle. The final step of creating your fabulous eyebrows is to ensure that they stay in place. This can be achieved by using gel over the eyebrows. I recommend Brow Set by MAC cosmetics, as I find that this ensures my eyebrows do not come off easily, especially since it’s winter. We don’t want one full caterpillar on a face and then a naked one next to it! Like I said in step two, practice makes perfect; there are days when mine don’t look as perfect as I know they can be, but it’s all trial and error with makeup. Always ensure you find the right colour as well! Defining the brows can add instant shape to your face and also have them stand out and create a sexy, well-kept look. To help you further, here are some eyebrow products that I have tried and tested and would recommend giving a go: MAC eyeshadow espresso, HD brows, MAC was, Brow Zing Benefit Cosmetics, Big Beautiful Eyes Benefit Cosmetics. On Youtube, I feel that the following ladies give pretty fantastic how to guides on eyebrows: pixiwoo, DulceCandy87, JennaMarblesVlog and evepearl.

the opportunity arises. I will be blogging about my time there so if any of you want to hear more about what I get up to on my two-week placement then check out my blog, using the address below. Thank you! FIND OUT MORE

Topshop prepares for the next season. Please recycle.

February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS


Online shopping addiction Emma I’Anson It seems that as our purse strings become tighter, our hunt for clothing and bargains goes off walking around the high street and instead comes into our own homes and onto our computer screens. Within my close circle of girl friends, the good old trade of clothes and makeup happens when outfits and looks have been worn a few times and need to be swapped for something new, especially when the University loan and job on the side just isn’t bringing in enough. I have, however, recently been purchasing a few items from and and it has definitely been worth it. The clothes are similar to high street brands such as Topshop and River Island but without the high prices. And the quality isn’t bad at all. A life on edge for being a friendly neighbour

Drive REVIEW Director: Nicolas Winding Starring: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston Length: 108 minutes Nick Birss Recently released on DVD, Nicolas Winding Refn and Ryan Gosling’s slick action thriller is no doubt on course for instant cult classic status. Gosling plays an unnamed mechanic and Hollywood stuntman-turned-getaway driver. The opening sequence sees him in an externally modest, yet internally brutal, Chevrolet Impala and aiding in an armed robbery. When the driver meets Irene, his classically beautiful next-door neighbour, his life gets turned on its head after he helps her ex-convict husband on a make-or-break

million-dollar robbery. Gosling’s character goes through an astounding transformation, from a calm, even romantic, mysterious loner, to an intense and somewhat psychotic killer. The onscreen chemistry between the driver (Gosling) and his neighbour-come-lover Irene (Carey Mulligan) is instantly believable and is what helps to make this movie so subtly brilliant. In fact, from the moment the title sequence rolls you know you’re in for something special. With the perfect mix of carchases, fight scenes and haunting silence, Refn’s vision was for the picture to appear like a dream, spiralling out of control. If you bought your ticket expecting a Fast and the Furious type all-out action movie, then you had most

The shoes on these sites are amazing too. I have bought a few pairs of day and night shoes now and they have been so comfortable; I can totter about them all day. I’d compare the quality of the shoes to New Look but much nicer. New Look’s shoes have gone downhill slightly, and they don’t seem to be going against the other high street brands as much. For makeup, I have purchased a few bits and pieces from brands such as MUA, Sleek, Fashionista and the LOOK makeup, and they have all been worth it. I will be honest and say that nothing will compare to MAC and NARS, but if you’re on a budget and you’re looking for some good eye shadows, blushers and bronzers, these makeup lines are the place to go.

definitely wandered into the wrong screen. Drive is so much more, with Gosling on top form and a number of great cameos from other stars. The most notable of them is Christina Hendricks, playing Blanche. She makes her appearance during the movie’s main heist and her presence is undeniable, so much so she comes close to stealing Gosling’s spotlight. Her character knows what lies ahead when the heist goes wrong and Hendricks portrays this quiet yet blatant elemental fear with amazing detail. VERDICT


Drive is an all-round instant classic, and I can’t really argue with a 93% rating on the review site Rotten Tomatoes. Best to look online for the hottest trends at cheaper prices.

Paper Clips REVIEW Director: Joe Fab Starring: Sandra Roberts, Dagmar Schroeder, Tom Bosley Length: 84 minutes Katrina Muhly Paper Clips, directed and produced by Joe Fab, is a documentary that I stumbled across on BBC’s iPlayer the other week. I read the summary and thought it could be an interesting story, so I sat down to watch it. Little did I know, what a beautiful, emotional journey I was in for. Starting in 1998, the 8th Grade classes (students around age 13/14) at a school in Tennessee worked to create a Holocaust memorial. As the documentary states, the American South is known as an area that has struggled with racism, and the teachers at the school felt it was

important to educate their students about cultures and thereby teach acceptance to a new generation. Nearly all came from white, Christian families and had never met a foreigner before; the clip of a young girl giving a clinging hug to a German man is quite thought provoking to our diverse London culture. While studying the Holocaust, one student at Whitwell asked: “what is 6 million?” as Paper Clips follows this small school’s effort to collect 6 million paper clips in memory of the 6 million Jews that were killed in WW2. The documentary is not just about paper clips; it is about teaching love and acceptance. It is about intelligent, keen children who can make a difference in the world. It is about a community coming together for a common goal. It is about the passionate teachers who give so much to their students. It is about

the best parts of human nature. To the British ear, the Southern drawl throughout the film might be difficult to listen to, but that’s exactly what this documentary is about: accepting how other cultures are different. The people we meet along the way are genuinely great and intelligent; their goals deserve commendation, and their message is very clear. The documentary is fast, informative, and, most importantly, tremendously moving. By the end of the documentary, I couldn’t help but smile. If a town of 1,600 can do something so tremendous, imagine what we could all do together. VERDICT


For a feel-good, inspirational watch, I definitely recommend Paper Clips. Please recycle.


February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning - the laziest ever RPG? Platform: Xbox 360, PS3, PC Publisher: Electronic Arts Release: February 10, 2012 Ricky Compton Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is one of the latest games published by EA Games, produced by 38 Studios and Big Huge Games. 38 Studios has some pedigree games developers, so it’s amazing how their new game feels like such a cheaply made role-playing game. The graphical quality seems as if it was copied and pasted from World of Warcraft, with one of the first cut-scenes featuring gnomes that had a ridiculously familiar appearance. However, they’ve also made some very poor costcutting decisions with horrendous

facial movement, so that even the main characters’ faces don’t change between a look of serenity and one of sheer terror. Facial expressions, lip synchronisation and movement all seem to be done with the minimal amounts of work, and it breaks the immersion of the game. The game looks like it was built for the previous generation of consoles. Voice acting is mediocre at best and the actual script isn’t the most riveting you’ll see. The demo throws you into a seemingly infinite sequence of cut-scenes which are dull and dreary before presenting you with the same ‘dungeon escape’ opening that we’ve seen too many times, complete guessed it...giant rats. The main premise is cool: a character who dies and is

brought back to life by a well of souls, to find that he is fate-less in a universe where fate is so defined that an order of sages is specifically trained in reading a person’s entire life. That is interesting, but what they do with it is bury it under reams of re-used RPG trash. The kind other RPG’s threw out a long time ago. This is where I become disheartened at the RPG genre. Have we really reached this stage where games developers are becoming so lazy and so conservative in their development that it’s gone beyond that to just blatant copying? Is there really nothing else that can be tapped from a genre that offers such vast, expansive opportunities? Dragon Age: Origins is still one of my

favourite console RPG’s, as it was immersive, the characters were well produced and the storyline worked with its own originality. In comparison KoA just isn’t there: it uses a button configuration resembling Fable, a talent tree system that could easily be ripped from World of Warcraft, and lockpicking is the same mechanic as Fallout or Skyrim but much worse. If you want a good RPG this spring, buy an old and reliable one you’ve yet to try. VERDICT


A poorly mashed together collection of some of the most overused elements of RPG’s and good mechanics that are poorly implemented. EA

It’s no lightsaber, is it?

Ten reasons...

to take up gaming Ricky Compton 1. Games offer a rich, interactive entertainment experience. When’s the last time you were able to shape the progression of a film? How many times do you shout at characters because you know what they should be doing? Gaming gives you the control. 2. The social aspect of gaming is getting stronger all the time, with more and more games featuring cooperative and competitive multiplayer than ever before. 3. Casual gaming means that even if you’re not interested in hardcore role-playing games or first person shooters, there’s still plenty of puzzle and arcade games to attract you. 4. There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing the credits begin to roll on your very first completed game. Ask any gamer and they’ll be able to tell you their first. (Pokémon Yellow) 5. In terms of releasing stress, there’s nothing more cathartic than being able to completely escape reality for an hour or two; if you’re particularly sadistic, try games such as The Sims, to make others’ lives even more hellish than yours. 6. Gaming is still considered a ‘new medium.’ Gamers today are still evolving and growing an industry that is constantly rising to new heights. Be part of it! 7. Swords. Guns. Monsters. Quests. Assassins. Zombies. 8. Creation games such as Little Big Planet all the way to Minecraft provide a new way for the artist in you to shine. 9. Engage in activities and events that you aren’t able to in reality through the wonder of video games: sports, motor racing, mass murder etc. 10. Bragging rights. Plain and simple, trophies (PS3) and achievements (360) are there to be flaunted.

Kinect for hardcore gamers... really? Ricky Compton With the upcoming release of Mass Effect 3 holding many gamers on the edge of their hypothetical seats, it raises the question for quite a few of them as to how well the Kinect integration will actually benefit the game, rather than just provide a novelty five minutes of amusement before being disabled. For those of you not following the trend of console peripherals, the Kinect is a motion sensor with built-in microphone for the Xbox 360. This allows you to do things like tell your Xbox to open the disc tray and have it happen, or scroll through the various menus using body gestures. It’s also used to play games that you would usually find on the Nintendo Wii without the need to waggle around a white hunk of plastic. Games like the unoriginal Kinect Sports and Kinect Adventures utilise the full body tracking and allow you to play various sports

and mini-games that get casual gamers’ knickers in a twist. However, the salvation for the large black webcam attachment came with the promise that it would integrate itself into

hardcore games. Titles such as Ghost Recon: Future Soldier and Mass Effect 3 are set to have Kinect’s mechanics weaved throughout their gameplay. Handy features such as voice

commands have been a desire for gamers since the first person shouted, “Move faster you stupid paddle!” at a game of Pong. In a recent trailer for Mass Effect 3, a group of overly happy testers gaigai25

Kinecting to hardcore gamers. Please recycle.

praise the Kinect integration, but I’m still a little sceptical. For the majority, hardcore games are those that allow you to tap into the being of a character and fully immerse yourself in their world. Minimising the amount of movement or effort required to go from thought in your mind to action in the game is the best way of forming this immersion. Being able to talk to your team mates is good but the feature of saying ‘Open’ or ‘Inspect’ really highlights the fourth wall (interesting topic to Google) and can cause immersion to suffer. I remain hopeful that a spawn of casual gaming can yet offer a true benefit to hardcore titles, but there is no way to shake a seemingly impervious feeling of dread at how many promises can lead to such few sparkling results. Here’s to me being wrong when Mass Effect 3 and Future Soldier hit the shelves.

February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS


Lovesong REVIEW Veronica Grubb Lovesong is the physical theatre company, Frantic Assembly’s latest venture in collaboration with writer Abi Morgan. Morgan is, of course, an established playwright in her own right, but more noted for her work in film and TV, which is seen in the unique style of Lovesong. Lovesong tells the story of one couple at the beginning and end of their lives together. This pure form is perhaps what makes it such a tearjerker; it takes just five minutes to fall in love with these lovers, which is important as you’ll be in tears within ten, and floods by the end. The ushers even offer boxes of tissues after the show – due to popular demand, I was told. The formula is played with cleverly; the crossover between times is achieved seamlessly so that the characters seem like time travellers in this haunting exploration of memory. At the centre of this is Frantic Assembly’s gorgeous choreography. Everyday

objects become triggers for this action; the actors emerge out of wardrobes or fridges sharing the same look of longing they hold for their lover with their younger counterpart. The movement possess an entrancing fluidity. Refrains are used, the physical familiarity of lovers couldn’t be more apparent than in this choreography. I admit I shouldn’t have been surprised by the elder actors’ physical prowess, yet I feel they deserve an special mention – perhaps they aren’t as sharp as the younger couple, but this ensemble wouldn’t leave the same impression without their rekindled energy working together with the younger couple’s. It lends a love which has grown old with the characters, a sense of eternal youth. A production like this is dependent upon the marriage of movement and writing. But Morgan achieves something altogether very different with silence. The silence is established

The couple throughout time.

You’re no Patrick Swayze.

from the beginning as being as vocal as any words which two people that know each other inside out could share. As a result, I feel the audience response is injected with something of them; we each hear something different in the silence. It is an achievement to compel an audience to focus upon the little things like this, a quality I would relate more to film or television. Seemingly aware of this, the play opens with a projection of the title, almost like a title sequence. The play itself stands alone so well, I question the necessity of this device. The flight of the starling flock is a sweet metaphor, present throughout all the years they’ve lived there, and will remain after they’ve gone, almost like a child reminding us of their enduring sadness to have not had one. Yet I find it somewhat patronising that they feel the audience requires

Johan Persson

this visual aid, when we have enough sensibility to imagine the memories being recalled. Their ‘lovesong’ is never heard in the absorbing soundtrack, remaining a private thing to them. Hensel’s design, a stage carpeted and coloured with leaves, could be used to greater effect, but focuses and binds their memories immortally to their garden. Graham and Hogget had a wonderfully lucid vision directing and choreographing this play that has been achieved with the craft of an artist, the brush strokes lingering in your mind’s eyes, long after you’ve dried your eyes. VERDICT


The production values work effortlessly with the play to create something which can only be described as beautiful.

Facebook privacy woes now have a face Matt Smith With each Facebook update comes a new wave of user insecurity about privacy. Photos aren’t deleted, settings change without warning, and for a brief time at least it was even possible for users to see who had deleted them. Until now, these were distant tales. Perhaps you knew one or two people who had suffered minor setbacks, but it was rare to see the true extent to which complacency with security settings could change somebody’s life. Now these stories have a face. Primary school teacher Elizabeth Scarlett, who taught at a school in Crumlin in Wales, has been reprimanded by the General Teaching Council for Wales for posts on the social networking site.

According to the BBC, posts included discussions about the best website to buy sex toys, comments about drinking, and even an invitation for a former student to “go out for a drink or go clubbing.” The reprimand will remain on her records for two years and will be seen by any prospective future employers. Mrs Scarlett said that she thought her account and comments were ‘”locked to the highest possible setting.” This is the latest in a long line of incidents surrounding Facebook’s privacy settings, all of which serve as cautionary tales for those who are unaware of what employers, places of education, and strangers can see on their profiles. Users who are concerned about their account security can

access Privacy Settings using the menu at the top-right corner of Facebook. From here they can change what people who are not their friends can see. It is also now possible to change the visibility of individual posts using a drop-down menu on the status input screen. This gives users the chance to exclude individuals from a post, or to only make it visible to certain groups. The best policy is to regularly check Facebook’s privacy settings to make sure that you notice when security features are updated.


FIND OUT MORE Protect your privacy at Please recycle.

Are Facebook updates really for the better?


February 2012 - Le Nurb ARTS & REVIEWS

Do we go to the theatre to cry? Veronica Grubb It occurred to me recently that when I go to the theatre, I am much more likely to give a show a five star review if it if it makes me cry. I will admit immediately: I am a weeper, and therefore this is no mean feat. Still it raises the question: why have I come to expect a good show should move me to tears? Myself being no fair judge alone, I asked my friends the same question and received basically two responses: either they are absolutely, most definitely not criers; or, yes they do expect, or at least relish the power of theatre, to move. An observant point was made about theatre itself as an art medium being to some, more moving than film, due to the intimacy of the space. I recall myself, crying onstage during a devised performance, and marvelling later at how apparently this was all the catalyst needed for the audience simultaneously to also burst into tears. On reflection, however, this was what I would call an extremely sentimental piece: something written in order to make an audience cry. The immortal themes of tragedy it seems will inevitably make audiences cry: death, illness, loss etc. We’re identifying with human feelings that we all share, so no wonder several theatregoers I spoke to mentioned the cathartic nature of theatre. As with all art, we connect with it on a personal level, recalling our own feelings in relation to the characters in a revelatory communal experience. Yet on another level, it is something selfish a critic should perhaps consider. Simply because I connect with a play personally, I may give it five stars whereas another critic who doesn’t is just as liable to give it only one star. I recall the most recent shows which have made me cry: Lovesong, and Matilda - two immensely different pieces of theatre. I would

probably consider you heartless if you didn’t shed a tear at Lovesong. Its focus upon the unspoken being communicated physically primed it to be an exemplary tearjerker. As the audience fill in the silences with their own meanings, within the context of the piece, the suffering of the characters becomes unbearable to watch as if we are watching ourselves. And at the other end of the spectrum, we have a musical. Matilda is probably the most delightful musical in London at the moment and so all it takes is a little girl’s story to turn what was a beaming smile upside down. Significantly, I have noticed with musicals that I can cry even if it’s an awful story, as personally, music elevates the keenness of my emotional response. Of course, a plot interspersed with song and dance is not only engaging on several levels, but also simply easier to watch; so it is no wonder we may cry more often at the musicals. This begs the question, if we assume musicals are the more popular viewing choice over a play, is this because the sum of its elements are more likely to

Iron Lady REVIEW leave us in tears? By proof of the sheer popularity of musicals, has it become an expectation to pay for tears on top of tickets to feel we’ve received value for money? Whether we like crying at the theatre or not, after writing this I no longer believe it is necessary in order for a show to deserve five stars. For example, Jerusalem, a play which people camped overnight to see and travelled to Broadway and back, was in no way sentimental. Instead, it was masterfully written to balance both the comedic and tragic sides in pure characters; it is a play that seemed so hard-hittingly real that it was experienced more than it was simply watched. We might conclude that the most important dimension to emotional engagement is the appreciation of theatre as a form of escapism. One could argue that theatre requires greater suspension of disbelief than film, being more limited in its conventions. But if it is a well written and performed piece that absorbs the audience, then being a tearjerker should be neither here nor there to appreciate it.

megyarsh To cry or not to cry? That is the question.

arts@artaud: returns Dana Segal The first of 2012’s arts@artauds was a quaint and varied affair. Instead of the regular School of Arts audience, we were greeted with family and friends of performers, with some audience members as young as 6 years old. Not only was the audience variety refreshing, but also the performances of non-arts students such as Hot Club De Brunel showed that arts@artaud is truly a platform for all creative work throughout Brunel. The opening act of the night was the moving and poignant documentary “Occupoema” by MA Documentary students Panons Papafragkos, Alexandros Papathanasiou and Song Haining. This was a short documentary following the day in the life of beat poet Michelle Watson as part

of her activism within Occupy London. The boys managed to capture the hopeful and united atmosphere at St Paul’s with talented precision. Following that, we were delighted once again with Bald Dog, the band with an orally difficult name yet aurally delightful music. The duo got heads bopping and feet tapping as they played another successful ten-minute set. The final act of the first half was an extract from ‘Ball Boys’ by David Edgar; directed by second year Drama student Elliott O’Brart. Performed meticulously by Matt Wright and Scott Hodges, the piece’s humour was heightened through the clever use of large, dramatic gestures for the character of One Eye, contrasting with the calm and carefree

physical qualities of Rupert. O’Brart used simple lighting and the set effectively, allowing the focus to be maintained on the quality of performance by the actors – of which they certainly delivered to a satisfied, stomach-holding audience. As we returned, we were greeted with the wonderful sounds of Suren Persia and his wonderful ambient guitar playing. Suren played a piece called “The Joy of Whirligig” and added melodic depth to his solo performance through the use of a loop pedal (for my fellow technophobes this is a small device which records live music and plays it on repeat.) It takes great skill to perfect the timing in order to create such precision in front of an audience, but Suren achieved this effortlessly. Please recycle.

Director: Phyllida Lloyd Starring: Meryl Streep, Jim Broadbent, Richard E. Grant Length: 105 minutes Ben Moxey From the outset this film was always going to be divisive. On the one hand it is a film centred around the rise to power of the only woman to ever lead a major Western power, a real strike for women’s rights and equality. On the other, a film about a person so reviled in folk-lore that grown man still speak with fury at the mention of her name. If one can overcome the politics of the piece and focus on the human aspect then the film has a lot of substance to go on. The opening scene in which Thatcher (Meryl Streep) is a wisened, hunched old woman, baffled by the price of milk and alarmed by the manners of the average London ‘yoof’ is genuinely disturbing. From there, the film tells the story of her rise to Prime Minister through a selection of flashbacks that are prompted by the memory of her late husband, Dennis (Jim Broadbent). The faults however are rather clear to see. The stories told are bizarrely out of sequence with the Falklands War coming after the Brighton Hotel bombing and the miners’ strike preceding the both of them. There is also a reluctance to name any of the cabinet leaving viewers of an age younger than 30 (so…most of you) to guess who people are by the haircuts or their placing. It was not until the credits rolled that I realised that the excellent Anthony Head was playing Geoffrey Howe and not Jeffery Archer as I had thought upon hearing the name ‘Geoffrey’. I am afraid I am not to know that Archer was not part of the ‘Wet Cabinet’. But in this fault – its reluctance to share information about characters – there may be a point.

The penultimate act was a film entitled “Alienation” – a collaborative project by creative writing and film students, as well as actors from English, Drama and non-arts disciplines. Although filmed around campus, the crew managed to transform their spaces effectively, and credit is due to the editor that created a surreal montage of images to represent the mental struggle of the young boy. Finally we were treated by Hot Club De Brunel to a performance of some classics from Black Sabbath through to Peggy Lee, all delivered in a gypsy folk style by two guitarists and a saxophonist. Despite a slightly nervous start, they performed with great energy and precision, especially during the intricate finger-picking solos.

In that there is no need to know who this or that person may be. It bears little relevance to the story as the story is about Thatcher, and Thatcher alone. The cabinet could have been stocked with 12 copies of Heseltine (Richard E Grant) and it wouldn’t matter as all you need to know is ‘Maggie doesn’t like the Cabinet, Cabinet is rude about her’. In the end, the scenes in which you see Streep portraying an obviously powerful woman, now reduced to a doddering old women who lapses in and out of attention, a woman bothered by the memory of her dead husband and reviled by many in the media who know nothing of her work but purely because it is fun to, these scenes are the most accomplished. I feel that in the flashbacks you sense that the more interesting story, the King Lear-esque descent into madness, is happening off-screen and while it is note-worthy to see her past this film felt less like a ‘biopic’ and more like a clip-show of Thatcher’s best and worst bits with well-acted commentary. Streep herself has said that the “ambition of this film was to look at the life of The Iron Lady from inside out and locate something real. Something that may be hidden but truthful in the life of someone that we have all decided we know something about already.” So whatever your view on the Iron Lady (the person) is I strongly advise seeing it. If you hate her, then it will give you time to grumble in the pub afterwards. If you love her, it will cement that belief and your heart will go out. And if, like me, you are carte blanche on the woman, then you will enjoy the story as just that: a story. VERDICT


If, like me, you are carte blanche on the woman, then you will enjoy the story as just that: a story.

WRITE FOR US! Send us your arts article or review: Le Nurb accepts submissions from any Brunel student. Full details on page 2.


S TU DEN T L E T TI NGS - 01895 252542 Please recycle.



February 2012 - Le Nurb COFFEE BREAK


Wordfinder Difficulty: 55555

Difficulty: 55555






3 1





5 4


2 1










1 3




7 6






7 5

8 8

Difficulty: 55555 Find as many words as possible using letters from the grid. The words must be four letters or more, and contain the central letter, but each letter may not be used more than once. There is at least one word that uses all nine letters in the grid.
























1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Numberdrums Ascent

RATINGS: 12-16 17-21 average good

22-27 excellent

Difficulty: 55555

Difficulty: 55555

Use all the numbers in the outer ring to make the target number. You can add, subtract, multiply or divide them - and use brackets - to reach your solution.

If each circleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s value is the sum of the two beneath it, what goes in the topmost one?


TIME TO BEAT 1:41 by Rob





30 17

61 3






28 godlike










32 26

11 15


65 12

3 4 14

Please recycle.









February 2012 - Le Nurb COFFEE BREAK


by Auntie Romance from Bognor.

ARIES (March 21-April 20)

Timid creatures are often those to find first love. Be less brash, learn to control your flailing arms, and do try to fart less.

TAURUS (April 21-May 21)

Christ knows what kinds of things will happen you today. But it’s going to be hectic and possibly traumatic. It’s hard, though, because that could just be what’s on television, not what’s going to happen to you. It’s a tough life being an astrologer.

GEMINI (May 22-June 21)

Robots tend to have more luck than you at finding love. This week will see no alteration of that sad fact, however, it is possible that a robot may fall in love with you.

CANCER (June 22-July 22)

Oh my, the stars predict a fantastic, whirlwind romance for you! And to make it better, you already know who with! It’s your hand… move on.

LEO (July 23-August 22)

Forget finding that one true love and concentrate on your friendships. Maybe love will blossom from that? You know Droopy-Eyed Barry? He’s always had a thing for you…

VIRGO (August 23-September 21)

Note: admitting to shooting the sheriff is not a good alibi when accused of shooting the deputy. You would be better off saying you were down the pub.

LIBRA (September 22-October 22)

Love can come from all sorts of directions, but when it falls from the sky it’s more likely to cause injury. If angels do fly low, it’s only to laugh at how pathetic we all are.

SCORPIO (October 23-November 21)

Today will be a mixed bag with good bits and bad bits. Someone you know may say something nice to you, but they may not and you will begin to suspect the Le Nurb astrologer is just hedging their bets.

SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21)

You may experience tingling where there shouldn’t be. These feelings may lead to further complications so please visit a clinic. Don’t take photographs of this, or if you do, please avoid emailing them in. My eyes will burn and my soul will die.

CAPRICORN (December 22-January 20)

Capricorn, no other star sign rhymes with horn. Although factually accurate, the previous statement bears no real relation to your Valentine’s horoscope.

AQUARIUS (January 21-February 19)

Peaches are your lucky fruit for today, and iced buns are your lucky dessert. “Harder”, “faster” and “more intense” are also said to be George Lucas’ favourite phrases. See if you can make them yours.

PISCES (February 20-March 20)

If you’re at all unsure of whether your love interest is reciprocal, please bear this in mind before trying to climb on top of them.

Easy Sudoku

Target number is 3,004. 4. ((108 + 65) - (3 - 1)) ÷ (12 ÷ 4) = 57. 1. ((54 + 30) x (3 - 1)) + 17 - 8 = 177.

6 5 1 3 8 7 2 4 9

2 8 3 9 1 4 5 6 7

4 7 9 6 5 2 8 1 3

8 1 6 4 9 3 7 2 5

7 9 5 2 6 1 4 3 8

3 2 4 8 7 5 6 9 1

1 3 8 5 2 6 9 7 4

5 6 7 1 4 9 3 8 2

9 4 2 7 3 8 1 5 6

28 godlike

achy, arch, archly, ashy, cash, chair, chairs, charily, chars, chary, chrysalis, clash, crash, hail, hails, hair, hairs, hairy, hays, hiss, larch, lash, rash, rashly, rich, richly, sash, slash.

2 6 8 1 4 3 7 5 9

5 4 9 2 7 6 8 3 1

1 3 7 9 5 8 2 6 4

Please recycle.



Evil Sudoku

8 1 6 4 3 2 9 7 5

22-27 excellent 17-21 good 12-16 average RATINGS:

4 5 2 8 9 7 6 1 3

7 9 3 6 1 5 4 2 8

6 2 5 3 8 9 1 4 7

3 8 4 7 2 1 5 9 6

9 7 1 5 6 4 3 8 2 le end



2. (61 + 38 + 14) x (4 + 2 + 1) = 791.

Now with more densely-packed hexagonal cells! Yeah, you heard. le start

3. ((63 - 32) x 15) - (26 - 11 - 3) = 453.

The Tall Maze of Awesome Strikes Back



2012-13 Editing, checking and designing next year’s Le Nurb. Well, someone’s got to do it. Find out more next issue.


February 2012 - Le Nurb ADVERTISEMENT | LE NURB 2012/13

2012-13 News editor. Features editor. Arts & Reviews editor. Sport editor. Chief sub-editor. Sub editor. Chief designer. Designer. Photographer. And much more...

We’ll soon be looking for people to join the Le Nurb team next year. Find out more in next month’s issue.

Please recycle.


Please recycle.




Brunel prepares for Varsity retention Gary O’Brien On Wednesday, March 28, Brunel University clubs and supporters will descend upon the old rival turf of St. Mary’s University College Twickenham to compete in the tradition that is Varsity. Ever since the tradition started in 2009, Brunel has come out worthy victors each time. This is the first year that the competition will be held at St Mary’s, which plays into the hands of what will be a very energetic and supportive home crowd. The university is improving across the board in sport, and last years’ close result of 9-7 suggests this year could be the toughest challenge Brunel has faced in the 4 years of Varsity. One thing is for sure, though: this year is going to be bigger and better than ever before as a one-day event. Here is why… I have been working closely with the SMUC AU President this year, as we have a joint vision to not only provide more sporting opportunities, but opportunities for all students to express themselves and make it a student (not just sport) event with a festival atmosphere. This joint vision is a super development compared to recent years, where varsity has seemed to just be a very bitter and alcohol-fuelled sport fixture. It is ironic that myself and the AU President exchanged many a “banterous” word to each other last year, however now we are taking it upon ourselves to create and environment that celebrates sport and student involvement that still retains that competitive edge (winning is still paramount!). This year we have added more fixtures than ever before. Whilst you will have to wait until the next edition of Le Nurb for the exact timetable, I will let you in on the fixtures that have been scheduled for this exciting day! Here are the fixtures that look likely to feature in Varsity 2012. Athletics 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m. Men’s Badminton 1sts Women’s Badminton 1sts Men’s Basketball 1sts/2nds Women’s Basketball 1sts Men’s Cricket 1sts Men’s Football 1sts/2nds/3rds Women’s Football 1sts Men’s Hockey 1sts Women’s Hockey 1sts Netball 1sts/2nds Men’s Rugby League 1sts Men’s Rugby Union 1sts Women’s Rugby Union (12s) 1sts Men’s Table Tennis 1sts Men’s Tennis 1sts The fixtures cover a lot of sports that both universities excel in. Whilst St Mary’s would expect to dominate the rugby, I would argue that the development in Brunel rugby this year has started a very positive transformation to bring it back to its Borough Road days. This year, the boys and girls could give St Mary’s some cause for concern. Brunel naturally expect to win the ball and basket sports (basketball/ netball) but no game is ever a given. Varsity will be won in the sports where it is tight and it is in these fixtures where a strong away

Who will win the race to the trophy? Please recycle.

crowd will really help our teams! Last year, St Marys bought 400 students to campus and I plan to do the same. Brunel Varsity shirts are in the process of being made (see the probable design), and we are currently sweetening up the coach company for a great transport deal on the day. But what else are we doing to make this day different from any other? Before we even get to the day I have arranged, with very generous co-operation from the school of Sport and Education, for the pre-Varsity briefing to include a little psychology pep talk for all our players to get them in the right frame of mind for the big day!This year we will have live music being played/ performed from the decking of St Mary’s Union. A few student bands/singers from each Union will provide some entertainment to fans near the BBQ area that will be on site near the main rugby pitch! If that wasn’t enough, we will also be having Radio Brunel broadcasting live on site giving commentary, pre- and post-match interviews with the players and providing the best experience for anyone not able to make it to varsity (but we hope EVERYONE can make it down). I am going to be bringing our cheerleaders (from all squads) to come and give some extra voice and visual entertainment for each competitive venue. Our Games squad will be hyping up our indoor sports before our Blizzards (fresh from nationals) will give the rugby crowd a half time show to remember. I also hope for some demonstrative societies such as circus to be present to add some creative flare. This day will also be the day that myself and the Volunteer Chair (Alex Mitchell) plan to unveil our student Sports Therapy team. Physiotherapy students from Brunel will be on hand to give our Club members’ pre-/post-sports massages to aid their performance. This will add a great sense of professionalism and get that extra 1% that could be needed to win a tight match. This day is huge on the calendar year and the stakes are growing higher every year. The clubs thrive off this day, as do those who get involved in the spirit of Varsity. With so much on offer this year, I cannot stress how great it would be to be part of varsity and really get behind Brunel as we go to retain the great trophy. Losing simply doesn’t come into the equation. I will add that violence and unfair play/chanting also must not come into the equation and that Varsity should be competitive but a celebration, not bitter. To get in the hype and stay up to date with all news then please follow the Facebook group “BRUNEL vs St Marys Varsity. TEAM BRUNEL” or start the Twitter trends #TeamBrunel #Bruwha #BrunelvsStMarysVarsity. Let’s go, Brunel!



Get your Sports Fed Ball tickets now!

The Sports Federation Ball is the biggest event of the year for all those involved with Brunel Sport! This evening is a coming together of around 450 students in celebration of the success Brunel has achieved in sport throughout the academic year. This year the event is taking place on 27th April, at Savill Court Hotel that boasts an exquisite landscape. We are currently in the process of organising this prestigious event, with various exciting attractions such as a photographer, casino ,and a DJ, to name but a few. Tickets have been available over the last month; early bird tickets, offering a £5 discount, have been popular with students. A new batch of tickets has since been released, with the promotion for the event escalating due to great input from club members via word of mouth, Facebook and Twitter, along with the distribution of multiple posters around campus. Ticket sales for the event have since rocketed. So don’t hang about, get onto sportfedball and purchase your ticket!

New leaps in volunteering In today’s world, there are many buzzwords surrounding employability, and ‘volunteering’ is one of them. Brunel is very lucky to have the University support in the form of Brunel Volunteers and Union support in the shape of Alex Mitchell, our Volunteer Chair. It is work with the Volunteer Chair that is providing exciting prospects for 2012 and beyond. We are working closely with the school of Physiotherapy to provide these students, in a hugely competitive market where only 1% of graduates make it private out of University, with chances to stand out from the crowd whilst benefitting our clubs. Many students do a sports therapy course to enhance their CV, and it is this that we are currently working on exploiting. Wednesday afternoons are where books are dropped and the sports kit comes out. Brunel do war with other universities for sporting glory, and many at the expense of a strain or two. We now have the plan to implement a team of sports therapists to give pre- and post-game massage therapy to our competitors on Wednesdays and big events to help give our guys and girls the edge! Also, we have some very positive developments in our relationship with the council. We are now looking to confirm work with our clubs to facilitate sessions for young offenders. Whilst only a few clubs have been identified as key points of interest, we would like to hear if any other clubs are keen. Brunel Volunteers are offering free CRB checks for all students wanting to help. It is a perfect opportunity for students working towards volunteer accreditation and coaching awards. It is also strengthening our link with the community and highlighting the great work done by students at Brunel! Please recycle.


February 2012 - Le Nurb SPORT

Boxing hit the Snow-stopping athletics Championship Alexander Gilbert

High hopes for a win in Sheffield. Elena Morgan Brunel University Boxing Club are set to head to the top this month. They will be taking part in the British University Boxing Championships 2012 (BUCS Boxing) on Saturday, February 25. It is the quarterfinals, and there are high hopes among the boxers. Representing Brunel boxing this year are Patrick Diai (aka Ultra), Jack Hughes, Chiedozie Ekeoma and Joshua Durler. Patrick won the Boxing Championship back in 2010 and hopes to regain his title this year. “BUCS is very challenging with talented boxers from Nottingham Trent, Durham, Essex and Portsmouth,” Patrick says. “They will be there to win, but so are we.”

If you’re interested in supporting the boys, the quarterfinals are held at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield. Tickets will be available on the door for £10, or for just £7 with an NUS card. On the first day of the competition, you will be able to buy tickets for the following weekend. Boxing is a tough sport, but like any sport it’s a great way to keep fit and meet new people. Training includes circuits, sprints, sparring, and bag work. Brunel’s Boxing Club meets every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. FIND OUT MORE We’re on Facebook - just search ‘Brunel University Boxing Club’.

Claire Lilley & Stuart Campbell On February 3, the Brunel Cross Country team took the long journey over to Cardiff, where they were to compete in the BUCS XC at Blackweir Fields. On race day, the snow began falling at nine in the morning, just before the team left the hotel to get to the course, and didn’t let off till after five in the afternoon. With half of the team getting lost on the way to the course, it wasn’t ideal preparation! Several of the runners competing represented GB throughout the junior and senior ranks, so we knew the competition would be fierce. At the beginning of the year, confidence was high in the men’s team, aiming for a top ten finish which was well within the team’s grasp, but a spate of injuries ravaged the team. The team in the A race ended 20th, below what we had hoped for. On the flat and snowy course, Matt Bergin led the team home with a cracking run and individual placing of 20th with another Fresher, Tom Mead, next home in 118th, which with only a week’s training back from an injury lay off was a promising performance. Rich Larsen and Stuart Campbell completed the team’s scoring in 129th and 144th respectively. Leif Chandler was the 5th Brunellian

home in 153rd, and final year student Chris Hepworth finished in 169th off of little training. In a race of 318 competitors, we congratulate all of our runners. In the B race, of 358 competitors, with a team made of all Freshers except one, it was pleasing to see them finish 32nd overall. Fresher Nathan Ditton came storming home in 63rd position, which was an exceptional run, showing he had the capability to have held his own in the longer race. Adam Varvel was next to finish in 132nd after an intense sprint finish with a rival from Bath which he just edged. This was again a superb run after battling a knee injury since before Christmas; it had been touch and go whether he would run at all. Chris Larsen was just two places behind in 134th and couldn’t quite gain the final ground on teammate Adam Varvel. In his final year at the BUCS XC, Alex Hookway ran strongly in the freezing conditions to finish 253rd with triathlete James Donaldson in 283rd. In the women’s race Melissa Courtney bought the team home in 31st position in her BUCS debut. Melody Kane, also a BUCS debutant, was next home in 125th, followed in by Team Captain Claire Lilley in 139th who completed the A team’s

scoring. Anna Boniface came in first for the B team, finishing in 166th, a performance she described as below par. Next home for the B team was Ella Neale in 202nd. Twelve seconds behind was Kav Solder in 251st and seven places after Kav was Rachael Newport in 258th who completed the B team. Isabelle Kidson came home in 317th just ahead of Helena Whiting in 319th. These results meant that the A team finished 30th overall, ahead of the B team in 64th. The atmosphere on the day was absolutely fantastic, and all BUCS newcomers embraced the race and took it head-on. The effort and support shown by each member of the team was outstanding; and all whom competed were satisfied with their achievements. Overall, the whole team has done Brunel Athletics proud, everyone should be delighted with their performances and already thinking ahead to next year’s race! GO HARD OR GO HOME! BRU-WHAAAAAAAAAT?! FIND OUT MORE Visit our minisite at, or join the Facebook group: just search for ‘Brunel Athletics’.

Piggybacks, pyramids and celeb spotting her team mates giving each other piggy backs. The 3s eventually produced a formal team photo after the photographer made Captain Angela Brownsey remove her socks and trainers and swap them with another team member because they weren’t acceptable enough for the photo. The informal photo included two pyramids, which proved to be a mission for certain shorter team members to climb on, but the finished result looked impressive when it was finally taken. The club photo was definitely a long process but the end product was worth the wait. Again, Charlie Males was spoken to by the photographer when her legs were slightly open and this was brought up when a male runner was trying

Take That Photography

to get past the photographer. The photographer’s exact words being “you can close your legs now, he’s gone.” This explains the slightly red-faced Charlie in the photo. Again, like the 3rd’s photo, trainers were a problem and many girls were expected to fit into trainers that were two sizes too small, the photographer claiming that “if you just undo the laces, they’ll fit.” After many changes of shoes and embarrassing comments made, the photograph was taken and the session was nearly over. During the photo there was a bit of celeb spotting as gold medallist Linford Christie was in the athletics centre training runners of Brunel. Some of the hockey team were fortunate enough to meet the athlete and have a photo with him to end the session.

The final result after several embarrassing comments and shoe changes. Laura Eke Wednesday, February 1 saw the Brunel Women’s Hockey Team come together for team photos, which was a fairly stressful but fun session. All teams had a formal and an informal team shot and then the whole club came together for a formal photo.

During the first team’s informal photo, captain Catriona Bausor is seen to be very authoritative as she stands tall in the middle surrounded by her team mates in two mini pyramids... The second team photo led to Charlie Males declaring she was a Fresher as she was recognised by

the photographer as ‘the trouble maker’ from last year. This will definitely be remembered by returners and Freshers and will most likely be used against her in future events. The informal photo by the 2s was acrobatic, as Ellie Perkins posed for the photo with a hand stand surrounded by Please recycle.

Linford Christie with the fortunate few.

February 2012 - Le Nurb SPORT

A spot of pub golf for Hockey Anja Groves Brunel Women’s Mini Tour 2012: the most freezing weekend! Arriving to -5° weather seemed to be the least of our worries, as we had to call our stay in Brighton to an early close. But who said that was where the fun ended. Brighton, the place of Gay Pride, had a lot to answer for as us Hockey girls got ready in Pub Golf attire; shorts, long socks and polo shirts probably were not the best idea for the coldest night most of us ever experienced. The eight-hole

challenge was only finished by one individual, Anna Louise. However, the award for best “golfer” should go to Gemma Easton for her very impressive perfect score. Worst golfer goes to Rebekah Andrews for going home before twelve. As the night unfolded, we managed to fund a new McDonalds with an almighty pit stop, and as result, only six people lasted the entire evening. The following day consisted of a lengthy walk to the pier – again, in freezing conditions – with many a two pence being

spent, key rings collected and vicious games of air hockey. Once we had heard that snow was going to hit both Brighton and Brunel, we decided that it was best to leave Brighton, its bunk beds, the cold and the sea, and head back to Brunel. As a result of the snow, we decided to bring BUWH Mini Tour to Brunel, with another eventful evening of murder-ball, dressing up in the obligatory Baywatch themed tour t-shirts and of course more drinking. After that, we decided

to have a snowball fight, which may have involved waking up and terrorising most of Galbraith Halls – big apologies. The following day consisted of a Locos breakfast (and forcing Freshers to eat black pudding), pool tournaments, and of course the Super Bowl. The Super Bowl was a perfect way to end a hectic weekend even if we didn’t actually play any hockey! Many thanks to Evie and Anna for organising tour and the events that unfolded.


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Outstanding results for Squash Club Abubakr Chaudhry The annual Middlesex County Closed squash tournament came to a glorious end last month on January 14 and 15 at the Finchley Manor Club. Brunel University Squash team players – namely Gareth O’Brien, Adam Southey, Abubakr Chaudhry, Daniel Henderson, Sophie Harris and Jo Barnard – actively participated in the 2 day prestigious event and produced stunning results that “gave an excellent account of their squash club” according to the tournament organiser. Abubakr Chaudhry, Brunel 1A’s number one, confidently cruised through the rounds to reach the final of the Men’s event, where he took just over an hour to defeat his opponent 11/5, 11/13, 11/9, 11/8 to claim the title. It was an achievement that created positive word of mouth for Brunel’s rapidly improving standard. Adam Southey had a tough first round match, winning 11/8, 12/10, 3/11, 3/11, 9/11, and Daniel Henderson fought very hard in his quarterfinal match but narrowly lost. Gareth O’Brien played stunning squash and tried his level best despite the tough rounds he faced against two National top

seeded players; he managed to reach the quarterfinals of the Men’s. In the Ladies event, Joanne Barnard, Chairman of Brunel Squash Club, got through to the quarterfinals, where she succumbed to defeat 11/7, 11/7, 11/6. She then proceeded to the plate where a tough encounter in the semi-finals resulted in a close five setter: 7/11, 9/11, 11/9, 11/2, 10/12 that lasted 70 minutes, and ended her run in the tournament. Brunel Squash Club are eagerly awaiting the annual Roehampton Cup on February 11 and 12, where they finished third last year. Several top universities, including Durham and Bath, will be participating in this event. Brunel is the only university to be entering two teams, and we wish them both the best of luck. A week later, our top performers will be representing Brunel at the annual BUCS Squash Individual Championships, which will be held in Birmingham. The hard work from the players and invaluable help this year from James Hyatt (England Squash coach), and Dominic Trewin (Captain), will hopefully lead to excellent results in both competitions. Let’s do Brunel proud!

Abubakr Chaudhry on winning the Middlesex County Closed Men’s final. Please recycle.


February 2012 - Le Nurb SPORT

Barbarians outclass Cambridge Blues

Robb Moss After refusing a walkover from Cambridge 6 weeks ago, Brunel Barbarians knew that a tough re-arranged fixture would lie ahead against the Cambridge Blues, who would be gearing up for their televised Varsity match against Oxford. The opening 10 minutes found Brunel struggling to take shape on the pitch and conceding two early tries. It took 15 minutes for the Brunel forwards to get fired up, but after the two-try wakeup call, Brunel bucked their ideas up. The 2nd row duo of Tom Simmons and Dan Staines provided numerous vital ball carries, tearing through the Cambridge defensive line and putting half back Vince Spurr in a great position to set up Harry Potter with a quick offload that would lead to the Barbarians’ opening try. After receiving the kick off, quick play from Brunel provided an overlap 10

meters from the Cambridge try line and winger Harry Davies crossed over untouched. The Barbarians continued this aggressive attacking push and again found themselves just meters from the Cambridge lin. Convincing blocks from the Brunel forwards left Halfback Spurr in a hole to simply walk over the line for Brunel’s 3rd try. With the Barbarians taking the lead, Cambridge attempted to muscle up in defence, but this made little difference to man of the match, Dan Staines, who powered through 3 pods of Cambridge defence to get the ball down for the final try of the half. The second half saw Brunel step up even further, outclassing both the Cambridge attack and defence. Excellent half back play from Spurr put props Jack English and Robb Moss through holes, scoring separate tries untouched from the half way

line. The score was now 36-10. After 60 minutes, the Cambridge side were clearly beginning to tire, despite only recently having returned from a 3-day training camp. The tiring Cambridge line saw a lapse of concentration close to the Brunel try line, and halfback Spurr gathered the Cambridge kick and danced through their defensive line to score from a 90-meter run. A flamboyant try ended the game; again with Spurr penetrating the Cambridge defence and great support from Hooker Finn Turley saw the Brunel Half back provide a Super League standard offload to Turley, beating the Cambridge full back, and scoring underneath the posts bringing the final score line to 50-10. This win saw Brunel finish in 2nd the BUCS South League, and now face Loughborough in the play offs. Brunel vs. Loughborough will take place at Site 5 on February 15.

Rich Varney Though a rocky start, the end proved to be strong as ever.

Time to sail like a Badger Anna Boniface

Brunel look for a strong victory after placing second last year. Chris Hulatt With over 18 teams expected from University sailing clubs around the UK, Brunel Sailing will be hosting its annual racing event, the Brunel Badger. Over the past 5 years, the Brunel Badger has grown to become one of the biggest and most successful sailing events in the UK, with teams travelling from all across the country to attend. There will also be some well-respected umpires from the Royal Yachting Association volunteering their time to help during the weekend. The event is spread out over the last weekend in February, and will be hosted at Datchet Water Sailing Club (our home reservoir). The weekend will see teams of six people (three boats per team) race against each other to get all three boats round the course and through the finish line before the other teams. However, unlike a typical racing event, teams are

allowed to trap the opposite team to gain an advantage. This results in a very competitive environment on the water. Off the water, the sailors meet for a social on the Friday evening to experience some of Brunel’s craziest nightlife. The Saturday social then swiftly moves on to some of Uxbridge’s finest bars; this is when the true racing begins. Each team tends to bring along a group of social members, providing a fantastic opportunity for people to catch up or meet new friends. Last year the Badger was won by Southampton University, who put up a good fight against Brunel’s team for first place (you can’t win your own event, can you? This year we hope to return stronger than ever with Brunel Sailings very first old boys team – seeing the return of some of our older members to help defend our name. Watch this space for results!

Lacrosse seal first season victory

Johno Fagan Hurrah! After a string of defeats, Brunel Men’s Lacrosse are finally victorious! Beating Portsmouth second team (8:6) was not only their first win of 2012, but also their first win of the season. “Fastest sport on two feet” - Lacrosse is a mix of skill, strength and agility. The physicality of Ice Hockey meets an extremely fast game. The Lacrosse team have seen a vast improvement over the last couple of months, with keen Freshers and improved returners leading the team to what is likely to be their best season yet. Dedication and determination have seen this team improve

tenfold, especially the Freshers, due to the help of the more experienced players and an encouraging camaraderie. Narrowly losing to Portsmouth at the beginning of the season (6:4), the team managed to bring it back around and secure their first win, one of many to come. Chairman Steve Purvey and midfielder Liam Grant ensured that Brunel kept the ball in possession for the majority of the game; Liam won 17 faceoffs out of 18 and scored 5 goals, giving Portsmouth’s goalie a hard time. Matt Manning, Filippo Conta and Ash Henderson all added to that pressure by scoring a goal

each. Conor Churchill made an impressive and welcomed debut as Brunel’s goalie. Brunel were a tight unit with few errors, a team who have been practising. Experiencing game play for the first half of the season, now the real competition begins. In 5th place behind Portsmouth, both on 3 points, is it too late for Brunel to top the leaderboard? Of course not. FINAL SCORE

Brunel 8-6 Portsmouth Please recycle.

Tom Larner The first victory on the road to the top.

February 2012 - Le Nurb SPORT


Full steam ahead for Men’s Cricket Adam Warden The second term is always a busy time for Brunel Cricket, with preparations for the 2012 BUCS season fully underway. A big season beckons for both the 1st team (who will have their first taste of Premier League action this year), and the 2nd team who will undoubtedly be looking for promotion after coming so close in the past two seasons. Squad training began the first week back, and has been wellattended despite the 8am start! To aid them in achieving their goals, the club has managed to acquire the services of a new coach in the form of Graeme West, a UKCC4 who currently works as the Academy Director at Middlesex County Cricket Club. This has been a fantastic acquisition for the club, with all squad members buying into his methods and gaining greatly from his expertise. Graeme will be working with the squad right up to the start of the season, which can only be a good thing as the club look to continue their previous success. On another positive note, the club has managed to secure a fantastic

facility to play their home games for 2012. In previous years, the two teams have used various grounds around the local area; however, for the first time, the club will now be able to call RAF Vine Lane home, and look forward to hosting the likes of Oxford and Bristol in April. Off the field, the guys have had a busy January, hosting a hugely successful Heroes and Villains Academy night and Raffle raising over £500 for the club, followed by their annual Indoor RAG Tournament. A special thanks goes to all those who attended or supported these events. The club is going from strength to strength with the collective effort of all its members, and our fingers are crossed that we can bring more success come fixture time.

Adil Khan Deshmukh

FIND OUT MORE We still have open sessions for all abilities every Friday from 7-9pm in the Sports Hall. For more information, take a look at

A new home and a new coach to help aid the cricket success.

RAG Cricket

Paula Stopkaand Sitting pretty at the top of the table.

Volleyball face their biggest challenge yet Shayesteh Mazloumian February is a big month for Brunel Volleyball Club. Because the Brunel girls won the student cup in Kettering in November, they qualified for the finals that will take place on February 11 and 12 in Norwich. It is going to be the most important event for the volleyball club – and probably the whole of Brunel – as the girls are competing against universities from all over England. Meanwhile, league matches started with a big win in 2012, as the Brunel girls beat Portsmouth 3-0 to stay clear at the top of the table by 18 points. Since the woman’s team experienced their only loss at the beginning of the season against Portsmouth, it was really important to win this match. Now, by winning 6 out of 7 matches, we have a great chance to win the league this year and make Brunel proud as always.

At the same time, the boy’s team is doing a fantastic job this year and they have a great chance to win the league as well. Unfortunately, the boys experienced their first loss (32) this year against Kingston in a very close match. However, they are still in the top of the table and hopefully going to stay on top for the rest of the season. 2011-2012 South Eastern Conference Cup for both men and women’s teams also started on February 1 to make this month even more important. As expected, both teams won their matches and got through to the quarterfinals. The Brunel boys went to London to play against Westminster University, and came back with big smiles and a great 3-1 win. At the same time, the girls played another away match against Kingston and beat them 3-0. The quarterfinals will

take place on February 22 for both teams. These 3 different competitions have made February very important for our club, and we are going to make the most out of it, win as many matches as possible, and fully enjoy our university experience. I am sure every member of the club is enjoying their time both in the training and the matches, as the whole club is doing a fantastic job. We are still going to have some more matches at home in Brunel sport centre, and all of the matches are going to be on Wednesdays. So please come down and support the teams; the up-coming matches are the most important ones, and I am sure you will enjoy the spectacle and we promise to make you proud. Best of luck for both teams especially the girls in the finals. Please recycle.

Adam Warden On Friday, January 20, Brunel Cricket hosted their annual Indoor RAG Tournament. A change to the format and the introduction of fancy dress livened up proceedings – sumo wrestlers, pirates and superheroes all made an appearance. In all, 7 teams took part, including Women’s Hockey and a number of representatives from other university sports clubs, providing stiff opposition for all the competing cricket teams. The tournament kicked off with the Cricket Freshers facing off against Women’s Cricket. In a closely fought contest, the Freshers set a daunting total in their allotted 20 balls. However, with skilful batting and some questionable umpiring decisions, they managed to gain a creditable tie. The rest of the tournament was always going to be competitive, with all the teams giving all they had, and despite the obvious disadvantages of the mixed gender and Hockey sides, they put in some very impressive performances. In fact, Hockey surpassed all expectations AGAIN by reaching

the final (after winning 3 of their 4 matches), only losing to the Superheroes 6 in the tightest of finishes. Needing 2 off the last ball, the Hockey girls just needed to hit and run to give them the win. Unfortunately, they could only manage 1 taking the final into a bowl off. After numerous attempts from both sides, Popeye stepped up and finally hit the stumps to seal the victory for the Superheroes just before the Global queue began. It must be said some excellent cricket was on display throughout the day and the wrong-handed batting induced some very entertaining moments. The presence of imaginative costumes and inventive headgear added to the spirit of proceedings. Most importantly, the tournament raised over £90 for RAG with contributions from participants and spectators. Thanks to all who participated and helped to make it another success, in particular Scott Doody, who organized the whole event superbly.

Scott Doody Superheroes, pirates and Popeye all took part.


February 2012 - Le Nurb SPORT

SPORT This month... BOXING

Ultra looks to regain his title


The Brunel Badger event

38 Aidan Byrne


On top form against Cambridge

Stuart Dixon (WAL) (right) takes on Will Fotherby (ENG) at the 2010 UK School Games.

Fencing slashes to silver at Slough Open Competition 38 CRICKET

Gearing up for success


An action-packed month


Alex Chatterton Brunel’s men’s and women’s fencing teams have both been in action this month. The men’s team beat The University of Hertfordshire 135-71 and narrowly lost to The University of Sussex 128-96. These results mean the men’s team are still in contention to win the league this year! The women’s team have been fencing well this year despite lower numbers, and unfortunately lost to Royal Holloway 135-74. Many of our team members braved the snowy conditions to attend the Slough Open Competition along with many other fencers from across the country. In the Foil, Christopher Mollard got off to a promising start, winning 4/5 matches in the group stage, with a seeding of 11th for the knockouts. He was automatically promoted to the last 64 - easily winning his match 15-9. However, in the last 32 stage, Christopher made a determined comeback from 1-5 down only to lose by priority - the fencing equivalent of extra time or tiebreak. Wth a final score of 1112, Christopher finished 21st. In the Epeé, Alex McGeoch

had a reasonable start winning 3/6 in his group, seeding him 42nd with automatically promotion to the last 64. Unfortunately, he was then knocked out and finished 45th. In the Sabre competition, Ben Usher had a great debut. He won 3/ 5 fights in his group and was seeded 19th afterwards; this gave him automatic promotion to the last 32 of the knockout stage. Unfortunately, Ben was knocked out in his next fight and finished 20th. This is nevertheless a great result for Ben, who started fencing only last September and marks the Slough Open as his first competition. Also in the Sabre, Brunel Fencing’s Club Chair Laurence Knott had a successful group stage, winning 3/6 fights seeding him 26th. In the last 64, Laurence won his fight 1513 in a victory that tested his abilities much more than he had expected. Unfortunately for Laurence, he was drawn against our own Stuart Dixon in the last 32 and after a valiant effort was beaten 8-15; he finished 25th. Stuart Dixon started well in his group, winning 5/6 of his fights; seeding him 7th for Please recycle.

the knockouts with automatic promotion to the last 32. In the last 32, Stuart beat Brunel Fencing’s Chair Laurence Knott, 15-8. In the last 16, Stuart met Nuno Esteves of Portugal and came out with a comfortable victory: 1510. Having progressed to the Quarter Finals of the competition, Stuart faced Scotland’s Stephen Rocks. Stuart dominated the fight throughout to win 15-13. Moving in to the Semi Finals to face Kirk Slankard of England, Stuart was initially behind but pulled through to win 15-13 and progress to the final! The Final was a hard-fought match against Thomas Nicholls of Northern Ireland. Both fencers pushed themselves to the limit. The result of the fight looked sealed as Stuart was 14-9 up, but Thomas made a herculean comeback to win the fight 1514. A gutting defeat for Stuart but a fantastic result, finishing in silver medal position! This was a great weekend of results for Brunel Fencers; not least Stuart Dixon who will be traveling to Jersey to compete in the Junior Commonwealth Fencing Championships for Wales on February 12.

All at the club wish him the best of luck! FIND OUT MORE Want to get involved with fencing, or just want some more information? Visit us online at

Xanthe Roe Stuart after taking silver in Slough.

Issue 6 2011/12