Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12 Loughborough is a research-led university, renowned for the relevance of its work, driven by society’s need for solutions to real-world problems. As such it contributes at the very highest levels to new knowledge and understanding, helping business and industry to compete more effectively, shaping public policy and ultimately helping to improve the quality of people’s lives.
Another major project, announced in January, was a new £10million East Midlands sport and exercise medicine centre, which is to be based in Loughborough. The hub – which will be located in a new, state-of-the-art building on the campus – is one of three in the UK that together will form the country’s first-ever National Sport and Exercise Medicine Centre of Excellence. The Centre will fulfil one of the Government’s key 2012 Olympic bid commitments and will be a lasting legacy of the Games.
In 2011-12 over 1,000 staff were actively engaged in research and 7.6% (1,272) of the University’s total student population were undertaking research degrees. Income for research-related activity totalled £38.67million, an increase of 2.9% on the previous year’s total of £37.53million.
The Loughborough-based hub will be run by a consortium of six regional university and hospital partners and will focus on a range of population groups including athletes, people with chronic illness, and those at risk of chronic disease. Its work will also help to enhance the wellbeing of the general population.
Among the significant funding received this year was a £5million grant from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) for an initiative to boost research, training and industry partnerships in the solar energy sector. Led by experts from Loughborough, the new SUPERSOLAR hub will see the creation of the UK’s first standards lab for solar energy devices, a training programme for the PV sector and the formation of an inclusive solar community that links research carried out in universities and industry.
The Centre will enable the co-location of university research teams, medical clinicians and service delivery, allowing the researchers to work in close contact with the people who ultimately benefit from their work, which in turn will help to speed up the translation of pioneering academic research into clinical practice.
Research that matters Research income 2011-12 Source
Research councils Industry and commerce Government and public bodies European Community Others
22.61 59 6.01 16 3.51 9 3.46 8 3.08 8
It is anticipated the East Midlands Centre will be operational by 2014-15. The Loughborough-based hub will also incorporate the work of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Leicester – Loughborough Diet, Lifestyle and Physical Activity Biomedical Research Unit (BRU), which was launched in August 2011. BRUs are part of a Government initiative to develop NHS and university partnerships, which will enable the country’s top scientists to ensure that their scientific discoveries are translated into new medicines, treatments and better care for NHS patients. Funding of £4.5million over five years from the NIHR, via the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, and £1.38million capital funding from the Department of Health is already enabling health experts from Loughborough University to look at how physical activity, diet and lifestyle can have an impact on the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. The research is paying particular attention to how these interventions affect Black and Minority Ethnic populations and younger adults. The funding will also allow the creation of nearly thirty new research posts. Much of Loughborough’s research – 70% compared to the national university average of 20% – is carried out in collaboration with external partners. The University has a long tradition of working with organisations to help them meet their real-world challenges.
Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12 Experts from the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences this year helped Macmillan Cancer Support to develop a set of work management tools as part of the National Cancer Survivorship Initiative to improve ongoing support and services. Each year over 726,000 people of working age in the UK are living with a cancer diagnosis, and many do not receive the information, advice or rehabilitation support they need to help them return to work. The new tool developed by the School outlines the important questions for people to ask, and importantly who can provide answers, at different steps of their cancer journey. Around 10,000 copies of the guide have already been distributed across the UK. The follow-up guide developed at Loughborough is aimed at the carers of those with cancer. It covers fundamental medical, work, home and financial questions and includes topics such as managing hospital appointments and visits, flexible working arrangements and leave, and benefit entitlements. This year Loughborough also worked with iconic British company Stannah Stairlifts, who utilised the expertise of the University’s ergonomists to help its staff better understand the challenges faced by its customers. By using a state-of-theart osteoarthritis simulation suit developed at Loughborough, the company’s engineers and sales staff were able to gain a personal insight into what it is like to suffer from the condition.
Osteoarthritis simulation suit
“Through innovative techniques like this we can ensure our products and staff continue to help our customers retain their independence in and outside of the home. Indeed, the osteoarthritis suit is already having a very positive impact on how Stannah designs its products and empathises with the needs of its customers.” Nick Stannah, Product Marketing Director at Stannah Stairlifts.
Using this technique, Fangjin has been able to repair several specific artefacts, including the ceiling and enclosure of a pavilion in the Emperor Chanlong Garden. Her work, which is part of an extensive restoration project being funded by the Chinese Government, will ensure that these precious works of art remain available for the enjoyment of current and future visitors from around the world. With staff right across the University involved in pioneering research, the University’s postgraduates benefit from a vibrant research culture. The students contribute to cutting-edge projects, mentored by academics at the forefront of their disciplines, meaning they gain the abilities and knowledge from top-quality research practice. Workshops and online courses coordinated by The Graduate School provide further opportunities for students to develop their skills. This year the University’s Institute of Youth Sport also began working with The Prince’s Trust to help train up young ambassador researchers up to age 25 to investigate the success of the charity’s Olympic legacy programme, Opportunity ‘Inspired by London 2012’. The scheme is part of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games Social Legacy programme and aims to ensure that marginalised young people across the UK connect through the Games. Nine young ambassadors from across the UK have so far participated in research training days delivered by the University.
Experts from the Loughborough Design School SKInS (Sensory and Kinaesthetic Interactive Simulations) Programme have been researching wearable simulations of certain health conditions for more than 15 years and have developed a range of suits that are proving invaluable to organisations in sectors ranging from transport and construction to banking and healthcare. The Loughborough team has also collaborated with clinicians at the University Hospitals of Leicester to deepen their knowledge of osteoarthritis, which affects about eight million people in the United Kingdom. Loughborough’s research has the ability to influence a whole range of differing sectors of society, both in the UK and overseas. This year, for instance, the University’s designers have helped to restore ancient artefacts from the Palace Museum in Beijing, also known as the Forbidden City, using the latest 3D digital technologies. Loughborough Design School PhD student Fangjin Zhang and her colleagues have been exploring the use of 3D printing and other digital technologies in sculptural and archaeological restoration since 2009. 3D printing allows physical objects to be built directly from 3D computer-aided-design (CAD) data, with minimal human intervention, helping to save time and money.
Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12 Loughborough’s student-centred ethos and outstanding reputation for high quality teaching and learning are among its defining characteristics. Its teaching is delivered by some of the country’s leading academics in their field and is informed by cutting-edge research and current business thinking, providing the University’s students with the best educational opportunities. In 2011-12, 14,797 students (88.6% of the total population) were studying taught programmes – 80% of them at undergraduate level. Just over 15% (2,256) of the taught population are international students. Funding for teaching and learning is the largest proportion of the University’s income for its academic activities.
and Paralympic Games. With sport sciencethemed lectures and interactive workshops, the event allowed the 11 to 14 year olds to see how science would be used during the London 2012 Games, hopefully helping to inspire them on their way to becoming the country’s next generation of scientists. Ensuring that qualified students have the opportunity to study at Loughborough, irrespective of their background or their ability to pay, is a key priority. The University’s comprehensive financial support package for 2011-12 – which included merit-based scholarships of £1,000 in some science and engineering subjects, and international scholarships of 25% of the tuition fee – sought to ensure that finance was not a barrier to undergraduate students’ admission to and progression through the University.
Outstanding teaching and learning Although the changes to higher education, and particularly the potential impact of higher fees, brought uncertainty to the sector, Loughborough continued to recruit well to its taught programmes for the 2011-12 year, with a full-time undergraduate intake of 3,556 (a marginal 3.4% above its target figure) and a postgraduate intake of 1,349 (6.7% under its target). In the HESA data released in 2012, Loughborough’s non-continuation rate among full-time students studying a first degree was just 2.6% - significantly lower than its 6% benchmark. The decision about whether to study at university can be a difficult one for any potential student, and is particularly so for some, such as mature students, children in care, those whose family has no experience of higher education, or anyone for whom the cost may be a potentially prohibitive consideration. With this mind, the University’s Student Outreach and Recruitment team run a range of activities and events designed to help students from all backgrounds make important decisions about whether to study at university. A higher education experience summer school run at Loughborough in July allowed looked-after children in the East Midlands to gain a taste of university life, by showing them the breadth of subjects they could study and how university could help them to fulfil their ambitions, and around 90 school children from across the East Midlands took part in a Science in Sport event, inspired by the London 2012 Olympic
Annual Review 2011-12
Support was available to postgraduates too, including merit-based scholarships valued at 100% of the standard tuition fee for outstanding full-time taught postgraduate students and departmental bursaries of £1,000 for self-funding taught programme and research students. This year the University agreed its bursary package for undergraduates looking to join Loughborough in the autumn of 2012. In total the University is expecting to provide almost £2million of financial support to students in 2012-13, rising to over £7million a year by 2015-16. Up to £3,000 of financial help will be available for each year of study, including an accommodation discount of £1,000 a year to help students take full advantage of the on-campus accommodation – a crucial element in the University’s unrivalled student experience. Additional fee waivers and bursaries are available for mature students, care leavers, Integrated Masters students and those on Science and Engineering Foundation courses. New sources of support made available to postgraduate students for 2012-13 include scholarships valued at £13,590 plus the UK/EU tuition fee rate for students wishing to undertake a PhD, and bursaries of up to £2,660 for care leavers who wish to progress on to full time postgraduate study. Among the externally-funded awards announced in 2011-12 were ten new undergraduate scholarships supported by Ford, which will provide £10,000 per year over a three-year period, as part of the Ford Blue Oval Scholarship Programme, established to help to develop the country’s next generation of engineers, scientists and innovators.
Our work in 2011-12 Banco Santander also announced it was to extend its partnership with the University by offering grants worth €5,000 each to undergraduate and postgraduate students, as part of its Formula Student programme. These important partnerships with business, which the Government’s White Paper identified as a key priority, have long been a hallmark of Loughborough. Many of the University’s degrees are accredited by professional bodies and supported by business and industry, meaning Loughborough’s students develop the knowledge, skills and qualities that enhance their employment potential.
One placement student, Lillian Hiscox, was this year named ‘Best Placement Student’ at a national awards scheme, in recognition of her work at Microsoft. The Best Student Placement Award celebrates the amazing contribution that students make to businesses across the UK and abroad. Lillian will return to Microsoft after graduation this year, having successfully attained a place on their graduate scheme.
“It was a great learning experience. Coming back to Loughborough for my final year I can now apply what I learnt in a completely different way to before my placement. Now I know a lot more about how it actually happens in a working environment and can apply it my course.” Lillian Hiscox
Year-long placements also allow significant numbers of the University’s students to apply, and enhance, their knowledge and skills through crucial work experience. In 2011-12 41% of the University’s full-time undergraduates were on such sandwich programmes, with 1,019 currently undertaking professional or industrial training. This year the University agreed that it would extend its flagship placement scheme, offering additional flexible, professional work experience – such as day-release schemes, vacation placements, and opportunities to study abroad – to all its students. Such opportunities are part of a wider specialist support programme to ensure that undergraduates and postgraduates are able to achieve their full academic potential. The English Language Support Service, for example, helps students to acquire the language and study skills needed for their academic programme, and the University’s Counselling and Disability Service provides comprehensive support to dyslexic students. One such support service, sigma – a collaborative venture between Loughborough and Coventry universities which aims to help undergraduates and postgraduates advance their mathematical and statistical skills – won the 2001 Times Higher Education award for Outstanding Support for Students. Students in disciplines as diverse as aeronautical engineering and social sciences benefit from up to 40 hours of support each week. In the first eight months of last academic year, more than 12,000 students visited the sigma services at Loughborough and Coventry, with a further 13,000 visitors using the online resources each month. In 2011 sigma’s work was rolled out to universities around the country and six regional hubs were established to provide opportunities for staff to share good practice, ensuring that students country-wide are able to benefit from this valuable service.
This year the University also made the decision to fund the establishment of the Centre for Engineering and Design Education (CEDE), after national funding for its two predecessor groups – the Engineering Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (engCETL) and the Higher Education Academy Engineering Subject Centre (EngSC) – ceased. This new specialist service works to improve students’ learning experience and enhance their employability skills. With ever-developing technological advancements it is crucial that the University constantly reassesses how it might best deliver its teaching. In 2011, the University reviewed and enhanced its e-learning strategy to ensure that the learning technologies available at Loughborough – for instance, the virtual learning environment, online assessment systems and, increasingly, external Web 2.0 services, such as YouTube and GoogleApps – remain relevant to the students’ needs and at the forefront of innovation. Feedback from the students is essential in helping to shape the University’s future development, and Loughborough has been cited as the university that demonstrates best practice in its relations with the student body and, importantly, their involvement in its planning. The National Student Survey (NSS) of final year undergraduates is a crucial part of the feedback process. In the 2011 poll, 88% of Loughborough’s students, compared with a national average of 83%, said they were satisfied with their course overall. In the individual subject areas, Loughborough was rated in the top ten in 14 subjects. At the core of Loughborough’s teaching are firstrate staff and the University ensures that, like its students, they too are supported in all that they do. The Teaching Centre was established to foster and promote effective practice in learning, teaching and assessment, and to support the professional development needs of academic staff and others with responsibilities for learning and teaching. Among its activities is an annual Teaching Awards Scheme, which recognises and promotes staff excellence in learning and teaching. As part of the scheme this year, it presented eight Teaching Innovation Awards worth up to £5,000 to academics across the University for new projects that are helping to improve the quality of teaching at Loughborough.
Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12
Fostering enterprise and innovation Commercial potential is at the centre of much of Loughborough’s research and the University has a strong track record of fostering innovation and spin out company formation. In today’s testing economic climate, and the shifting landscape of higher education funding, enterprise activity has a huge role to play in ensuring Loughborough, and indeed the wider economy, continues to thrive. Partnerships with business and with public and voluntary organisations play a big part in Loughborough’s enterprise activity. Often these organisations are external to the University but others, like spin-out business, social enterprises and graduate start-ups, are the fruits of Loughborough’s own entrepreneurial labours.
A dozen eggs was one of The Studio’s tenants in its first year of operation. Begun by two Graphic Communication graduates, Joanne Lloyd and Frances Collins, their company – which won the Graduate Enterprise Award at the University’s Enterprise Awards – offers branding, design and advertising specifically for start-up businesses and products.
“It was hugely important for us to learn as much as we could from The Studio’s mentors and experts. We have been supported by several key mentors who have been with us from the start, and whose advice and support has been invaluable.”
Annual Review 2011-12
The University offers a wealth of extra-curricular activities for students and recent graduates to encourage entrepreneurial activity. Workshops, competitions, forums and specialist advice are available to anyone interested in setting up a business or boosting their employability. October 2011 saw the launch of The Studio, a new enterprise incubator which helps to nurture the business ideas of graduates from the School of the Arts and Loughborough Design School and turn them into commercially viable products, services or social enterprises. The Studio provides the ten resident companies with expert mentoring in areas such as product development, marketing and business development, and covers the financial cost of getting their product or service to a commercially-ready state. Mentors are drawn from Loughborough’s graduate community, staff or external companies. The Studio’s resident companies also have unlimited access to office facilities, which provides a collaborative environment in which they can work and flourish. Working together as a creative community, the graduates can benefit from mutual support and the exchange of skills and ideas. Eventually the first set of residents will in turn become mentors to the next intake of graduates. The longer term aim is to open up The Studio to graduates of the University’s other academic Schools.
Industrial Design graduate Laurence KemballCook is perhaps one of the University’s most successful graduate entrepreneurs. His spin-out company, Pavegen Systems, has developed an offgrid technology that converts the kinetic energy from footsteps into electricity which is then stored in batteries and can be used to power lighting and signage, for example. This year the technology was installed in the walkway connecting West Ham tube station to the Olympic Park, which allowed Pavegen to harness the energy from 1.3million people who passed through the area during the Games. In July, Laurence was awarded first prize in the undergraduate business plan category of the Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards for his innovation which is helping businesses to reduce their energy costs and ultimately their impact on the environment. Biomechanics postgraduate student Felicity Milton also enjoyed awards success, claiming the National University Entrepreneur 2012 title for her innovation – a sock featuring medically effective technologies to prepare and repair lower leg muscles and improve circulation. The product combines the practical convenience of a wearable and washable sock with the medical effectiveness only found in much less accessible and more costly products such as infrared machines or ice baths. Felicity won £5,000 of business support to help launch her innovation into both the sports and the personal healthcare markets. Alongside its student enterprise accomplishments, the University has an excellent track record in the commercial application of its world-class research, with numerous spin out companies and licensing deals generated from its diverse portfolio. One spin out, Phase Vision, this year closed a £1.5million funding round led by Qi3 Accelerator and Octopus Investments. Phase Vision has developed and sells a range of high precision measurement devices, which help the aerospace, automotive and nuclear industries to manufacture and test systems more quickly and cheaply and with reduced environmental impact. The company will use the funds raised to employ more staff and grow its UK and export sales.
Our work in 2011-12
“As coach to Gold and Silver medallists at the London 2012 Olympics I am always seeking to increase my athletes’ performance. I understand the importance of training the breathing muscles and have used RespiBelt to achieve these results, improving my athletes’ running economy and endurance. RespiBelt is a great breathing training aid and I will continue to champion its use in my coaching to world class athletes.” Alberto Salazar, Nike Oregon Project Team
Another company, Progressive Sports Technologies, a spin out from Loughborough’s Sports Technology Institute, helped Britain’s Mo Farah and America’s Galen Rupp on their way to gold and silver in the 5,000 and 10,000 metres at the London 2012 Olympic Games. Their breathing training device, RespiBelt, which fits around the lower chest and ribcage to provide a training load to the breathing muscles as the chest expands during breathing, was used by the Nike Oregon Project Team, including Farah and Rupp, as part of the athletes’ training preparations. RespiBelt was named by media organisation ESPN as one of the top five innovations of the London 2012 Games. It is now also being used by sportsmen and women in hockey, triathlon and rugby.
Among them is Intelligent Energy, the University’s foremost former spin out company, which now employs 250 people worldwide. Investment this year in excess of $35million (£22million) valued the clean power technology company at approximately $0.5billion. The financial injection will enable Intelligent Energy to increase its pace of commercialisation within the consumer electronics and stationary power markets. Earlier the same month Intelligent Energy announced the creation of SMILE FC System Corporation, a joint venture company formed with the Suzuki Motor Corporation to develop and manufacture air-cooled fuel cell technologies for various industry sectors. Both companies have taken a 50% stake in SMILE FC System Corporation.
Each year the University celebrates engagement with business and public and voluntary organisations through its Enterprise Awards. One of this year’s winners, which were decided by public vote with over 4,000 votes cast, has already brought clear benefits to the local community. Realising the potential of the latest mobile technology to make policing faster and more efficient, senior officers at Leicestershire Constabulary teamed up with experts from Loughborough’s Department of Information Science to evaluate the Constabulary’s mobile technology network. The resulting project has now been fully rolled out across the Force, with every relevant police vehicle – from patrol cars and detective vehicles to the tactical firearm unit and armed response vehicles – featuring the new system. As well as being used in the vehicles, the devices can be used remotely by officers at the scene of an incident or crime and by neighbourhood officers working in local communities. Leicestershire Constabulary now has around 1,000 police officers and sergeants as well as other specialised officers using the mobile data terminals. The implementation of these has brought about a 15.2% increase in officer visibility, reduced vehicle mileage and service costs, more effective scheduled responses to members of the public, and an increase of 600% in agreed appointments. It has also dramatically reduced the time it takes to make a crime report available to another officer to investigate, from a minimum of three days previously to just 11 minutes. It has been estimated that the new technology could save the average police force £800,000 a year. Alongside its ‘home grown’ companies and entrepreneurial activity, the University hosts over 50 companies and organisations, comprising around 1,700 employees. The majority of these organisations are based on its Science and Enterprise Park.
Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12
The best all-round experience In an increasingly competitive marketplace, universities must provide a breadth of opportunities that enable students to achieve their full potential, professionally and socially as well as academically. With an unbeaten six student experience awards, Loughborough University already has an enviable reputation. Continuing to drive forward the students’ all-round experience remains a top priority. The Loughborough Student Experience is underpinned by the excellent relationship the University and Students’ Union enjoy. Together they provide one of the best student support networks in the country, which not only assists students with every aspect of their academic lives but also provides opportunities for personal development.
With Loughborough becoming an increasingly global community, its international students are a vibrant component in the all-round experience, and Loughborough Students’ Union this year received the Best International Experience prize at the NUS Internationalisation Awards. Held for the first time this year, the awards celebrate students’ unions across the UK that aim to improve the lives of international students and create a global experience for everyone. Loughborough was presented with the award for its ‘Experience the World’ initiative, which aims to provide all of Loughborough’s students with continual and varied international perspective programmes. Preparation for every aspect of the students’ future careers and lives is at the heart of all Loughborough does and the University offers a wide range of professional services that provide all its students, at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, with tailored support. In today’s competitive job market, Loughborough graduates stand out as having gained a quality degree. The University’s programmes are highly regarded by business, and Loughborough’s graduates are consistently targeted by the UK’s top recruiters. Through work experience placements, volunteering opportunities and enterprise activities, the students are also able to develop a range of personal skills and qualities that employers value and seek.
At the start of the 2011-12 academic year, the University and Students’ Union launched the Student Charter, which outlines how the University, students and Students’ Union can work together to ensure Loughborough remains a leader in student experience. With a set of clearly outlined commitments, the Charter is to be reviewed annually to ensure that it remains relevant to today’s constantly evolving higher education environment.
Annual Review 2011-12
With students now very aware of the need to maximise their employability, in 2011-12 around 90 of them boosted their recruitment potential by completing the Loughborough Employability Award. Organised by the Careers and Employability Centre, the award provides students with a framework through which they can receive recognition of personal development gained by participation in skills-related activities outside their degree programme, making them more attractive to potential employers and aiding their own development. Of the University’s undergraduate UK/EU students who graduated in 2011, 87% (compared to 85% the previous year) went on to work or further study. Of those in employment, 73% – compared to the national average of 63% – were in graduate level occupations. Loughborough graduates’ starting salaries were also above the national average.
Our work in 2011-12
Figures were also good for the students graduating in 2011 from postgraduate taught and research degrees, with 89.3% in work or further study six months after leaving. Loughborough’s single-site campus is a key component of the Student Experience and the University has continued to invest in facilities throughout 2011-12.
The halls of residence are, for many students, the heart of their Loughborough experience, and a redevelopment programme for some of the University’s student accommodation continued moving forward, including the Elvyn Richards accommodation, built in the mid-1970s, which underwent a phased refurbishment to complete the self-catered Village Court complex.
In October, the new £21million Design School opened its doors, enabling the co-location of many of the University’s Design-focused disciplines. The new building provides stateof-the-art facilities, including teaching space that caters for group working as well as traditional lectures, workshops, studios, research laboratories, a computer suite and areas for display and interaction. Elsewhere on campus, the upper floors of the Haslegrave building have been completely refurbished to include provision for larger research laboratories, workshop space, a large seminar room, and open areas for collaborative and interdisciplinary working for the Department of Computer Science. A redevelopment of the new Bridgeman Building has brought about similar types of spaces for the School of Science.
A new IT space has been created in the former entrance to the Brockington Building and three former teaching spaces have been replaced with a tiered lecture theatre and a large general teaching space, and the School of the Arts’ accommodation has been refurbished, bringing improved workspace and technical facilities. One of the Edward Herbert Building lecture theatres has been extended to create tiered seating for up to 400 students, and a former storage and office space in the James France Building has been converted to provide a 120seat tiered lecture theatre. The area outside James France has also been improved to provide better disability access, increased cycle storage and wifi access.
Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12 Loughborough is the UK’s leading university for sport, boasting an unparalleled record of excellence and offering opportunities at every level, for beginners and enthusiastic amateurs, right through to elite performance. The summer was dominated by the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, with Loughborough playing a central role as the official preparation camp headquarters for Team GB. A total of 524 athletes, representing all of the 26 Olympic sports, plus support staff, coaches and officials, passed through the Preparation Camp to collect their Team GB kit. Thirteen sports also used the campus as their base for their final preGames training.
To support the University’s delivery of the Team GB camp and the Olympic Torch Relay, 400 volunteers were recruited to the Medal Makers programme to help with a range of operations such as security, kit delivery and media management. In total the Medal Makers – who ranged in age from 16 to 84 and were drawn from Loughborough’s staff and student populations and the local community – clocked up 11,642 hours of volunteering over the summer. Through a partnership with LeicesterShire and Rutland Sport, the Medal Makers programme will continue to volunteer and support local events and activities, providing a tangible legacy beyond the London 2012 Games. Hosting such high profile events involved a significant amount of planning, not only to meet the needs of the British Olympic Association (BOA) but also to mitigate the impact the camp would potentially have on the University’s day-today activity and the local region. The University
The premier university for sport was mindful of the need to keep any disruption to an absolute minimum, but a few changes were required – for instance, the summer graduation ceremonies moved from July to September and open access to the sports facilities was amended. The University worked with a number of organisations with regard to its planning, including the Leicestershire and London-based police forces, the Local Resilience Forum, local authorities, the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and the BOA.
Prime Minister David Cameron
Among the dignitaries to visit Team GB’s preparation camp were HRH The Princess Royal and the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who gave a speech at the University to around 200 invited guests from local and national business about the country-wide economic benefits of hosting the Olympics. In July the University also hosted the Olympic Torch Relay, with thousands of local residents, school children, University staff and students gathering to see the Flame as it made its way through the campus. Throughout the day there were also a host of other events on campus for University staff and visitors. The day’s festivities culminated with a Guinness World Record attempt at the most people bouncing simultaneously on mini trampolines, with three hundred staff, students, and local residents taking part.
10 Annual Review 2011-12
Around 90 athletes with Loughborough connections competed in the London 2012 Games, with 13 of them bringing home medals. The University’s involvement in athletes’ top level performances is crucially underpinned by internationally renowned research and innovation, and some new Loughborough-developed technologies were on show at the London 2012 Games. Heated trousers developed by Loughborough, British Cycling and adidas were used by Great Britain’s cyclists. The trousers have battery-powered heat filaments that sit over the cyclist’s core muscle groups and maintain their temperature between warm-up and the start of an event. Experts from Loughborough’s Environmental Ergonomics Research Centre found that by keeping the cyclists’ muscles warmer there was a substantial increase in sprinting power that would be of practical benefit to the Team GB cyclists. Having completed their initial scientific research, the Loughborough experts worked with adidas and British Cycling, taking into account input from athletes, to bring the trousers to the sports market.
Our work in 2011-12 Tailor-made seats, developed at the University’s Sports Technology Institute with funding from UK Sport, were also used for the first time by Paralympics GB for the wheelchair basketball events this summer. The seats, which are individually moulded for each player to provide the best possible support, take the individual’s size, shape and particular disability into account and help the athletes to improve their speed, acceleration and manoeuvrability around the court. The advances have the potential to feed into improved seat design for wheelchair users in general. For instance the bespoke seats could reduce the problems with pressure sores currently experienced by a great number of wheelchair users. As well as facilities for performance sport, the University offers participation opportunities for all its students regardless of sporting prowess. Fiftyeight per cent of the University’s students already participate in sport at least three times a week – a figure more than twice the national average – and the University has an ambitious target of having 75% of its students involved in regular physical activity by 2015. Funding from Sport England’s Active Universities programme has allowed the creation of a new development team to drive participation and sports volunteering work over the next three years, and a number of key facility projects are being progressed across campus.
One of the Parks is part of a new £4million Holywell Sports Complex and a floodlit University Stadium, which can accommodate nearly 4,000 spectators, with seating and standing terraces. The Holywell Sports Complex provides a new home for the students’ football, rugby and American football teams and will also host major sports events and tournaments. To celebrate the opening of the stadium, the University hosted Loughborough student matches against the Tottenham Hotspur U20 squad and the Barbarians rugby team, bringing top flight sport to the local community’s doorstep. Other investments taking place this year were the development of a £350,000 National Throws Centre with funding from the University and UK Athletics, an £800,000 refurbishment of the Powerbase gym (one of the leading strength and conditioning facilities in the country), and the neighbouring sports medicine centre and sports science labs shared with the English Institute of Sport, and a new cricket pavilion at the Brockington pitch.
This year three new ‘Parks’ were created to provide free casual and organised recreational opportunities in traditional sports such as football, basketball and netball, as well as dance, beach volleyball and ultimate frisbee.
The Loughborough University Stadium
Annual Review 2011-12
Our work in 2011-12 As a large organisation based in a modest-sized town, the University is aware that its impact, both positive and less well received, can be considerable. Its long standing record of local engagement and relationships with local and regional bodies is helping to ensure that the University’s presence brings benefits to the community in which it resides.
A study into the economic impact of the University published this summer revealed that in the 2010-11 academic year, the University, its staff and students generated a total expenditure of £627.8million, which resulted in Gross Value Added (GVA) of £138.1million and sustained 9,174 FTE jobs. With 3,107 staff, the University is the town’s largest employer. Over 90% of its workforce live in the East Midlands, with almost 50% living in Loughborough.
These well-established associations were at the core of a bid this year by the Love Loughborough Partnership for funding under a government scheme, led by retail guru Mary Portas, to regenerate the high street. In July, it was announced that the Loughborough bid, which involved the University, Students’ Union and a range of local public and private sector organisations, had been selected as a ‘Portas Pilot’ town and would receive £100,000 to boost Loughborough’s trade.
The economic impact is undoubtedly significant. However, the University is also aware of the less positive influence that the presence of a student population of more than 16,000 can have on its neighbourhood. Although the students’ good work, through volunteering, for example, and the economic benefits they bring are recognised by the local community, they do not outweigh the negative impact that the disruptive behaviour of a minority can have. In February 2012, the University carried out a formal review, following concerns from local residents over student behaviour and its impact on the local community, particularly at the start of the academic year. The review involved local residents’ organisations, the police, University staff, the Students’ Union and the Chair of the Hall Students Federation.
An inclusive community
Six recommendations were made as a result, including earlier planning and better coordination of Freshers’ Week, increased CCTV and staff patrols to improve the community’s sense of security, and further engagement with external agencies, such as the police and local authorities, to ensure a coordinated approach.
“(The Minister) told me that he was particularly impressed with the way the town had adopted a partnership approach and pulled together to create a Business Improvement District (BID).” Nicky Morgan, MP for Loughborough
12 Annual Review 2011-12
The money will fund a number of initiatives, including the development of training programmes at the University for new and existing businesses and an engagement programme with the University’s students, who will advise businesses how to maximise social networking to promote themselves.
Working in partnership with both local and national organisations is a key element of the University’s work. This year, in affiliation with the Health Protection Agency and the Department of Health, the University hosted a mass casualty exercise for emergency services personnel in the East Midlands to help them test their major incident plans. Staff, students and volunteers from the region made up the 120 casualties of a mock gas explosion and building collapse, who were rescued and treated by around 350 police, fire and ambulance personnel, as well as staff from hospitals and councils. Staff volunteering is one of the activities recognised through the University’s Community Donations Fund, which was set up in 2009 using the cost saving achieved through the introduction of the SalaryMax scheme, and is another way for the University to support groups in the local community.
Our work in 2011-12
“In the current economic climate groups are finding it tough to get the backing they need. The Donations Fund is a really great source of support for many groups.” Neil Lambert, Voluntary Action Charnwood.
The Fund has four categories: the Education Fund (£5,000), for projects of an educational nature; the Open Fund (£5,000), for any project or initiative; the Inside Out Fund (£5,000), for University staff involved in community groups; and the Strategic Fund (£10,000), which is allocated directly by the University to projects in the community. In 2011-12 a total of 27 groups, including the scouts, sports clubs and a preschool, received funding through the Inside Out and Open Funds. One volunteering opportunity launched in the autumn of 2011 was the Fruit Routes project, which aims to provide a comprehensive ‘foraging’ map of the fruit trees and plants across campus. Events were held to show staff, students and the local community how to identify edible fruit and how to make drinks and other products from harvested fruit. The following year, groups of local volunteers gathered at the University to plant hundreds more fruit and nut trees to enrich the University habitat for people, plants, insects and animals, in line with its Biodiversity Action Plan. The Fruit Routes project was led by the University’s Sustainability team, who are also responsible for the It’s Better Off campaign, which aims to encourage the whole University community, including its suppliers and contractors, to act more sustainably in their day to day activity, by considering their energy usage, travel and transport, and waste and recycling.
Another integral part of the University’s commitment to sustainability is its five year Travel Plan, which aims to ensure that staff, students and visitors are able to become less reliant on their car and have access to alternative means of transport, or are encouraged to walk or cycle. The Plan is the University’s groundwork for the regular reports on its transport-related carbon emissions the University will be required to submit to the Funding Council from 2013 onwards. As part of the Plan the University developed a Car Park Management Strategy, which includes a new charging structure for those wishing to bring their cars to the campus. The announcement of the scheme in the spring of 2011 brought both positive and negative feedback and as a consequence, the University amended some of the charges and agreed to delay its implementation by a year. While the revised scheme is still based on the CO2 emissions of vehicles, there are now discounts on the charges depending on salary banding. The new charging structure is also being introduced gradually over a three year period from August 2012, to lessen the financial increase for staff and campus-based partners.
Since its launch three years ago, the campaign has resulted in savings of £318,200 for the University, which equates to 3.7million kWh and 2,020t/C02. The successful campaign was nationally recognised at the 2011 Green Gown Awards, picking up the Promoting Positive Behaviour award, which celebrates innovative approaches to promoting changes in behaviour within an institution or through its activities. One of the latest additions to the ‘It’s Better Off’ campaign is the Green Impact scheme, which was launched at the University at the start of 2012. A national initiative led by the National Union of Students, Green Impact encourages individuals and departments to implement sustainable behaviours in the workplace and as a result, reduce their impact on the environment. Teams are awarded points for completing specified actions with a view to achieving Bronze or Silver status. The coveted Gold award is then presented to the team with the most points. Twenty-three teams registered for Green Impact in its first year, with the Vice Chancellor’s Office picking up the Gold award.
Annual Review 2011-12
Making it happen in 2011-12 Underpinning the University’s activity is a support network of services and individuals, which together ensure that Loughborough’s teaching, research and enterprise and its renowned Loughborough Student Experience remain at the forefront of higher education.
In June, Loughborough won the ICT Initiative of the Year award at the Times Higher Education Leadership and Management Awards, for its new model of ‘hybrid cloud’ ICT provision. The awards showcase the extraordinary innovation, teamwork and commercial acumen of UK higher education institutions. Faced with a choice between the cost of refurbishing its 40-year-old data centre and the risks involved in moving its IT capacity to external ‘clouds’, Loughborough decided to devise a hybrid cloud, consisting of local clouds based at mini-pods at opposite ends of the campus. The introduction of this pioneering new system yielded the University estimated savings of around £3million. More than 200 university servers now run on the local cloud, saving more than £500,000 in IT revenue costs to date. The University’s power costs have also fallen by £100,000 and its annual carbon output has been reduced by 600 tonnes. May saw the official unveiling of the re-landscaped courtyard outside the Students’ Union building. The £125,000 re-design was made possible with funding from the University, the Students’ Union and the recently launched GradGift scheme. This initiative allows the year’s cohort of graduating students, together with alumni, staff and friends of the University, to contribute towards the Loughborough experience, leaving a lasting legacy for future students. Donors had their names engraved on over 600 bricks within the redesigned courtyard, raising over £12,000 in 2011-12.
Sixty-four per cent of staff completed the questionnaire. The results will enable the University to continue improving the quality of working life for staff, by recognising its strengths and identifying where improvement or change is needed. The survey reports are now being made available to all our staff and a series of presentations are being held to enable staff to ask questions they may have and, most importantly, hear about and discuss what the University plans to do next. The issues of staff pay and pensions have been the subject of much debate throughout the year. In November some members of two trade unions at the University, the University and College Union (UCU) and Unison, took part in a national day of strike action in support of national disputes over changes to public sector pensions schemes. In preparation for the action, the University put in place comprehensive contingency plans to ensure that, wherever possible, essential services were maintained. Following the 2011 pay negotiations the University, which is part of the collective process, implemented the consolidated increase of £150 on each spine point of the pay scales. This was included in the January 2012 salary payments.
With regard to 2012-13 negotiations, the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA) made its final offer of 1% on all pay points from August 2012 to the trade unions at the third and final scheduled meeting in May The University believes that this continual 2012. This is against the background of the HE enhancement of the students’ university environment trade unions’ (EIS, GMB, UCU, Unison and Unite) is one of a number of important factors in joint claim for an increase on all pay points of Loughborough’s continued good performance in the 7% (RPI as 3.7% in February 2012 plus an National Student Survey. As part of its desire to keep additional 3.3%), a commitment to a ‘Living improving the Loughborough Experience for staff as Wage’ and further work on equality issues. At the well as students, this year it undertook its second time of writing, all five unions have rejected the staff survey. Employers’ offer and four are in the process of balloting their members for industrial action. Completed over a six week period in April and May, the survey provides everyone who works at This is a challenging year for all organisations Loughborough with the chance to put forward their and businesses in the UK, particularly so for thoughts and suggestions on a range of issues, universities which are continuing to adjust to such as job satisfaction, training and development. reductions in public funding and policy changes. To encourage as many staff as possible to fill in the In anticipation of any action by the trades unions, questionnaire, the University agreed to donate £1 however, the University is already preparing its to charity for each completed survey. communications and contingency plans to again ensure that any disruption to its services is kept to a minimum.
Annual Review 2011-12