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Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

SEMESTER ONE: THE VIEW FROM KUSU Adam Mason Vice-President (Education & Welfare)


o, the year is half way done and what do we all have to show for it? Well, quite a lot actually. Individually, most students have probably written at least 5,000 words worth of essays...coll ectively that adds up to 30,000,000 words. Give yourselv es a massive pat on the back (and think of what your lecturers have to mark over Christmas!). As a Union, we`ve had a really good term. At the start of the year, we convinced Hallsnet to double their limit and started off the pilot `ICE` event which was a fantastic welcome to international students. Also, Rich Hill and Simon Chandler got themselves a prestigious interview with the brand new Deputy Vice Chancellor, Rama


Thirunamachandran. We`ve seen fantastic gigs come to Keele, courtesy of KUSU Entertainments; landing Less Than Jake, The Rifles, Coolio, Taio Cruz, The Music, The Subways, The Courteeners, Dirty Pretty Things, One Night Only and Enter Shikari (good effortl I say!) Fancy dress has taken over, with the Ballroom being invaded by a pirate ship, KUSU reception stormed by the Keele Army, the Ballroom turned into a disco for High School Musical and many more fantastic feats of fancy dress mania. During the year, we`ve continued the strong fight for fairer library fines, longer opening hours and more parking for students – all still works in progress, but looking promising in some areas. Super Sperm came out to play for Sexual Health Week, equipping our students with over 2,000 condoms and making sure they know the dangers of unsafe sex. Adam Mason and Keele Labour Students made the Government listen to our voices in the `Keep the Cap` campaign, getting both local and regional coverage, on the radio and in the papers. Rich Hill, revamped Concourse and gave it a swanky new look (with a little help from Adam Mason on the techy side). Then the man himself also got ourselves a new logo, which drags KUSU into the 21st century courtesy of Rich`s hard wrk and the UGM voters decision. The later half of 2008 also saw KUSU President, Talah Omran team up with the Athletics Union in building the job description for what we hope will be the new Vice President (Sports & Fitness) sabbatical officer. Adam


Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

Mason grabbed the regional bull by its horns and launched himself onto an executive position on the West Midlands Area NUS committee- putting Keele at the heart of the regional agenda. But hang on, don`t drop out and save up your Christmas pennies because KUSU has much, much more in store for next semester. During the exam period, KUSU will be running a `relax and destress` event as part of a Mental Health campaign, watch out for some bouncy castle fun to take your blues away. Soon after the exams, on January 27th, we`ll host the `Welcome Back` fair (aka ReFreshers Fair) so head down to the Ballroom and grab some goodies from the companies and sign up to those societies you just wish you hadn`t missed out on. Hop along to the Union General Meeting at 7.30pm on 27th January and bag yourself a free pint (or bottle, or shot & mixer) just for coming and listening. Volunteer to help run RAG Week, Keele`s main charity event of the year (email Dauda on and turn over a new leaf for the new year. In closing, it`s been a pretty good semester and I for one am determined to make next year even better! Good luck with those New Years` resolutions, enjoy the home cooked food, or just kick back, relax and enjoy a good rest before the next semester starts – whatever you choose to do with your winter holiday, stay safe, stay cool and stay Keele.


R EVIEWS - P AGE 1 6 & F ITNE SS - P A GE 1 9

2 News K E E LE M E N' S R UG B Y C LU B

8th December 2008

T HO U SA N D PO U N DS Rich Hill Rugby Club Secretary




et again, well over a thousand pounds has been raised for Children In Need by the keen fund-raisers of Keele Men's Rugby Club. Every year members of the rugby club dress up in drag to collect money in what is a superb and well recognized effort. Donning their skirts, wigs, lusciou s make-up and various other hosiery items the boys met at the early t ime of 8 o`clock ready to begin the collection. Starting off collecting around campus, no one could avoid the splendid sight of these men in drag. About ten groups crowded every corner of campus from about 8 till 11 providing entertaining sights for those early birds going to work or their lectures. Any worries that the looming credit crunch could effect this year`s donations were halted as both staff and student were as charitable as ever. Even the university senior management were not safe from this sight as your fellow Vice-President Rich Hill took his group of lady men consisting of Loz Fisher,

Steven Applyby and Michael Carr to Keele Hall. 10 o`clock came and it was time for the annual game of touch on Concourse. Seniors Vs. Fresher`s were the teams of this year and as always, it proved more of a comedy farce than a sporting spectacle. Major injuries were narrowly avoided even when Paul Bruce made a comedy (once in a lifetime) run down the wing by slipping, grazing his knees and missing an opportunity to score a try for the fresher side. As always justice prevailed, declaring the seniors as the winners by unanimous decision (decision all from the senior side of course!). On a side note, Roger Weston (A.U. President) was then punished by being put in the stocks and splattered with ice cold sponges and buckets of water to the joy of all!

Newcastle-Under-Lyme was next on the charity collection hit list and the boys made their way into town to continue the collections. Yet again, shop keepers, businesses and locals were given a surprise and added to the ever increas

A Message From Your C o n s ti tu t io n a l A ffa i r s Committee n the 14th of November the Constitutional Affairs Committee received an email from KUSU President, Talah Omran, asking for an official ruling on the constitutionality of the Union Committee decision to move the UGM in June to the 9th of December.


move UGMs for any reason, however in the past, Union Committee have been permitted to move UGMs by a small amount due to clashes with other events that would have had a detrimental effect on the meeting. As this is not the case in the current situation CAC believes that Union Committee do not have the authority to move a UGM in this instance.

The constitution does not explicitly state In light of this decision comthat Union Committee has the power to bined with the fact that a UGM Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper


ing weight of the buckets. After lunch and well earned break the group then prepared for the night ahead. The long day finished off with a night of collecting in the Students` Union. As usual the attention seeking group managed to gain a considerable amount of donations from you kind and willing lot! The buckets were then secured and after a long day, the boys were finally allowed to relax with one or two drinks (or three, or four!!) until the early hours of the morning. With the extensive effort of KUSU`s finance department every last penny was finally counted giving the final collection total as ÂŁ1 8 5 4 . 7 4 . Not bad for a day`s work indeed! Club Captain Jon McCormack commended this total by saying that `yet again we have proved that this annual event just keeps on getting better and better and gratitude should be given to the boys and all of those who donated to the cause`.

has been advertised on the 9th of December CAC is calling an EGM on the 9th of December to replace the advertised UGM with the purpose of discussing the issue of a new Sabbatical Officer and to give Students a chance to voice any concerns they may have over the current Sabbatical team's handling of the situation.

8th December 2008


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Robert Jenrick as their candidate to become Newcastle-underLyme`s next MP. When the general election is called, which must be before May 2010, thousands of Keele students will have the chance to vote in the Newcastleunder-Lyme constituency. 2008 Keele graduate Owen Meredith (the chairman of Newcastle Conservatives) welcomed Rob`s selection saying, `This is a really exciting move for the whole of Newcastle, and especially for Keele students. Having a young and enthusiastic candidate who will fight for and represent students will make a huge change to the stale and old politics of Labour, who have disregarded opinions of students time and time again.` Students living on campus at the time of the election will be automatically registered to vote, however if you live off campus, you will need to register with the council by filling in the form online at w w w . a b o u t




Rebecca Mulhearn

W hg yi v ei si ti ty,e te aacnhotthiemreb aSdt orkeep oarptpaenadr sa idnd tthoei tns efwa si l,i nigt ` sr e tpo-

utation? Having lived in Stoke for two years now, and enjoyed every minute; have I not seen the real Stoke? Or perhaps I just have never thought of comparing it with anywhere else, to get a real opinion for mys elf? This is exactly what I decided to do back in the summer, as I backpacked my way round Europe with some friends. We decided to use each country`s public transport to travel across the continent as much as we could, setting off from Stoke train station, and arriving back there a month later. Each city I visited I compared to my beloved Stoke-On-Trent. I began my journey in Rome and maybe the Potters football ground does not have the history of the Coliseum, but the Italians chose to not welcome us as the people of Stoke do, and it must be noted that their taste in music is not up to scratch, especially as I am comparing their talent with the likes of Stoke`s famous son Robbie Williams. Next I visited Venice, and they may have more canals than Stoke, but at least Stoke`s canals don`t give off such a pungent smell! Stoke has also never been blessed with attracting many tourists, so at least all the people you meet are genuine. I then travelled to Salzburg, where the hills are definitely alive. But Keele is only a stone`s throw away from Stoke and is easily one of the most attractive university campuses in the country; who needs the hills when you`ve got fields and fields at your disposal? Next was Krakow and although their exchange rate takes some beating you can`t dispute those prices in Stoke market. I then travelled over

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Rob, whose family live in the local area, said, `I am delighted to have been selected, and I am really looking forward to getting to know Keele students and championing the issues of importance to you. Keele is far too often overlooked by the Labour MP, and my promise to you is never to take Keele for granted and to be as much your MP as anyone else`s in Newcastle.` In a speech made by Rob following his selection, he pledged to actively campaign against lifting the cap on top-up-fees and will be campaigning on this and many other important issues with CF on campus. Keele Conservative Future will be at the forefront of Rob`s campaign to bring a new style of politics and an air of change to Newcastleunder-Lyme. We are inviting all Keele students to join us in our campaign, and encourage you to check out our website for more information and how to get involved: w w w . n e w c a s t l e c f . c o . u k or come along to our weekly meetings at 7:30pm on Mondays in Barista.

to Prague in the Czech Republic, whose architecture is second to none. But when you have the Potteries shopping centre on your doorstep, who needs amazing buildings to admire? Berlin was next, where I found the weather to be very mixed. We never knew what to expect or how the day would pan out, whereas back in Stoke we might not get the sun of the Costa Del Sol, but you can`t deny that the weather isn`t predictable. At least you know where you are with the weather in Stoke. A coat and umbrella are always necessary no matter what month you`re in, and it`s the honesty that I crave. I then went to Amsterdam, which was a fabulous city, but you can`t deny that their laws are just not appropriate and I was glad to get back to normality. My last stop was Paris. The French make a good baguette, but haven`t got a clue about oatcakes and I know what I`d prefer. The large bright homely train station of Stoke was a very welcome sight as my train pulled in. Europe is home to some very beautiful cities, with some of the most famous land marks and sights on earth. But, it`s no Stoke really, is it?



O VER T HE TOP ? M E ? Liv Sadler


las fellow students, it appears the great Keele Card debate has caused uproar among university ranks. Left, right and centre can be heard fiery discussions focusing on th e arg ument over to pay, or not to pay. Any day now it is expected th at there will be a revolution on campus!

Well perhaps that is a slight exaggeration, but, meh, in the name of satire and, crucially, an entertaining article, I think I`ll keep it in. As many of you have probably seen (and definitely commented to me on) it appears there is at least one critic of my argument about the right to free Keele Cards, and I don`t doubt that there are at least another, oh I don`t know, five or so, more. While I can laugh off the title of being `over the top`, and indeed relish it as a writer, the slur of being ill informed riles me somewhat. I am not ignorant enough to claim that my £9000 (closer to £10,000 actually as the top up fee goes) contributes towards a significant portion of any one of my lecturers salaries, or towards providing all the wonders of our library that in itself is comparable to that lost in Alexandria (don`t get me started), let alone to providing the lab-tastic resources that we get to make the most of...but I am pretty sure the accumulation of the £10,000 that I, and the other 12,344 students that study here, pay to the uni, makes a pretty big dent in that cost. By my calculations £10,000 from 12,345 students means £123,345,000 goes into Keele purely from tuition fees. And that is not taking into account that international students do indeed pay about three times as much (and there are 610 of them), and obviously post grads are paying around that figure also (making up 3400 of the student total) which altogether means the sum is closer to £203,450,000. Now I`m guessing you can do a lot with that kind of money! Just in case that little lot doesn`t cover expenses though, there`s also the accommodation charges. I`m pretty sure my comfy Barnes room and what I use of the kitchen and bathroom facilities doesn`t come to £3000 a year to maintain, even with energy prices as they are. On top of what I pay to live on campus however, the university also makes the most of the accommodation by hiring it out during holiday periods for conferences and that little bit extra income. Then of course there are the IC buildings, almost completely used for independent business that the university makes money from by leasing the offices. And these are the big incomes. Add in turnover from Keele Hall, parking fees, library fines, Keele Card costs, residential fines and so on and you have yourself a tidy little sum to keep things ticking over nicely. And this is what my argument is about. I am not a Keele Basher. I love Keele, I love my uni, and I think of it as home from home. I am not denying that these campus-based businesses have considerable financial parts to play in keeping all the privileges that we have as students as free. But I am saying that if the institution makes that much money then we have the right to expect certain things and question them if we don`t get it. I for one would expect to have a library with more flexible opening

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

8th December 2008 hours, so that if you did want to print something off the morning of your 9 o`clock lecture you could and not be late, or if you wished to study that little bit longer during exam period and have the books to hand, it wouldn`t be a problem to stay until midnight. If we have to pay for the right to parking spaces, then make sure there are enough parking spaces before selling the permits, so that there are less parking fines for those who drive onto campus and don`t have any other option. I`m pretty sure the swimming team would like to have a pool to train in on campus as well. The point is, if we have to pay for a brand new Keele Card, then so be it, but if we have an old one, that once was lost, but now is found (bit of an amazing grace edge there) why can`t Keele put a little tiny bit of that huge sum of money into finding out the technological advancement that will make the happy little man behind the counter reactivate it free of charge? After all they`ll do it for free if it gets stolen, or if it stops working and they`ll do it if you`ve got a yellow one when really you should have a purple one (I`ve witnessed this, believe me, it happens). I completely understand that we need to pay in order to receive a service, but, last years 3rd years would have paid just under £3,500 for the whole 3 years of their course, and I`m guessing, got pretty much the same services as we`re getting now. So where is that extra money going, I haven`t noticed any significant difference. Everyone always replies to this with `oh the expansion, the expansion!` Great. The expansion that won`t play a role in my time here. I`m not saying don`t expand because I won`t get anything out of it, that would be ridiculous and if we all worked like that we would never progress anywhere. But what I am saying is, ease the pain of paying all that money that will put us all in ridiculous amounts of debt at a very young age and offer the little things so that it doesn`t feel like we`re paying more but not getting more. And that is why, I will only be happy, when I can go to the Keele Card counter, with an old card, and get it reactivated. For free.




t's great being an expert on historical

Ievents. Being able to pluck a name from

the air, and weave bloody and gory stories around them. Dropping intelligent, yet witty comments in casual conversation with mates dahn the pub. It's great. Except, I am not an expert. Neither do I go `dahn

the pub`. I have, however, just completed a 2,000 word essay on certain aspects of crusading in the Middle Ages. It may look like a fairly pithy amount, sure, compared with the heavyweight textbooks I have been ploughing through for the past three decades – essay preparation does relish somewhat in its ability to give a completely distorted concept of time. But it seemed like a fairly pithy subject to begin with. Oh, how wrong I was. How incredibly moronic I was, to think that 2,000 words would give plenty of room for me to divulge in tales of adolescent excursions,

8th December 2008 and eschatological prophecies from harbingers of doom, destruction and anti-Semitism. It all begins with the reading you do. You go to the library. Take out several of the biggest books you can find - regardless of suitability or language; I always find the brightly coloured ones most appealing, personally. You take these back to your room, place them beside the laptop - that quietly powers away, tempting you with its warm hum of procrastination, and YouTube videos of idiocy. And then begins The Reading. The Reading can be the single most painful, non-fatal process any human can experience - short of performing a self-tracheotomy with a bendy-straw, whilst simultaneously giving yourself a foot-bath, with your feet submerged in a pool of hydrofluoric acid. Other times it can be a truly enlightening experience. But once you've been sat staring at the same page for hours upon hours, dissecting the tiniest nuances of each sentence, of each word, of each mark of punctuation, it does tend to drag. There is something wonderful in the way historians write. The same sentence that states simply, for example, the number of countries visited by a pilgrim, seems also to flow on forever. An endless tide of commas, and semi-colons - hyphens and quotation marks; as if the historian, momentarily mad, has been caught in some syntactic MĂś ebius loop, falling endlessly back upon themselves as they struggle to regain a foothold in its purpose. Elsewhere, out of the blue, astonishing, monosyllabic remarks are made - like it's God's honest truth, and anyone who questions it shall be branded either `pleb` or `nincompoop`. I sometimes fear we are all victims to some hilarious joke they are playing on us. A trick, where they see how many nonsense-sentence they can hide within one book, then one chapter, and eventually one page. So, you're reading. And soon you're lost in this wonderfully calming ocean current of informative prose. The kind of reading that makes you feel better about the world in general. Better about yourself - confident,



Kelly O`Connell.

I`m the kind of person who has a favourite season, and not in the fashion industry sense. I was a summer baby , and a friend of mine claims that your favourite season is determined by which season it was sixmonths after your birth, when you were first aware of experiences or when your first memory took place. So if you were born at Christmas time, your favourite time of year is likely to be summer. Admittedly this is an interesting proposition, although one that I am not too inclined to fall in with. I`m less demanding when trying to fill in the box of `favourite season` on my internet questionnaires. The fiery colour scheme, the first rush of a cool breeze, crunchy leaves on the path (maybe we all like these), and above all the smell of wood smoke on the air. Autumn arrives, the clocks go back, and it`s now okay to get into bed earlier as the nights close in.

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knowing that you have one more tid-bit of information to produce over dinner. But it doesn't last. And everyone just thinks you're a self-gratifying tit anyway. And you stumble back into the arms of Plath, for a soothing bout of melancholy. Or don the headphones for another reassuring round of sardonic Mancunian wisdom. Meanwhile, The Essay still looms. The vast expanse of blankness, of empty Word documents, tentatively awaiting the first glorious ounce of pressure produced by your fervid fingers, just sits there. Blankly Blank...And then it hits you! O, Divine inspiration! O, Celestial awakening! Your fingers run in torrents across the keyboard, a veritable blur of fleshy phalanges. At least, they do for the first 1,000 words. Upon reaching the big One Zero, Zero, Zero, you inevitably realise that either all your decent, highly original and ground-breaking points have been made, or that you've completely avoided answering the question. Instead, building a highly floral image of something with very little substance. The Jessica Simpson of academia. Despite this, some superhuman force within you drives you ever forward, ever closer to that two thousand mark. And then eventually you reach it, no matter how vague or irrelevant your conclusion may be. And inside your own little microcosm, inside the tiny self-perpetuating world that you've built up around yourself in this time of intensive studiousness, inside your own scholastic kingdom you celebrate! It doesn't matter that nobody else cares, because it's your kingdom, and you will celebrate! You run circles on your wheely chair. You put on your favourite upbeat song. Turn it up to eleven. And march around your kingdom in laps of sweet victory. You have defeated The Essay, and it is taken straight unto the humanities office. There She Goes, My Beautiful World!


However, over the past few years I`ve become increasingly aware of something terrible, which is beginning to destroy the autumn months. Have no fear; I`m not talking about global warming, which I`m ashamed to say I don`t know enough about, plus it is probably covered in another section. It is much, much worse. I am of course talking about Christmas. Gradually Christmas is taking over more and more of the year. It was mid October when I heard the first song of the festive season, blaring out from the radio on a furniture advert. October is not the time to start playing Christmas music. Barely one week later and I was startled to see metallic snowflakes and baubles adorning the windows and ceilings of a large percentage of shops in town. Either the premature snow has knocked everyone`s seasonal perception out of sync or the whole world has finally succumbed to the pressure of advertising and consumption. I`m not too upset that Christmas has lost its true meaning, and lets face it to be politically correct it was bound to have to turn into the `Winter Holidays`, but that doesn`t mean that we are going to let that change happen without a fight. Nor do I mind that Christmas has become increasingly commercial ever since Coca-Cola went red, seeing as I bene-



fit from this just as much as anyone else when the day of festivities arrives. Do we really want Christmas to extend over one third of the year though? Isn`t Christmas from October to January just a little too much? When I was younger, I would ask for the most exciting things for Christmas. Generally these were things that reflected the current craze such as trainers with flashing lights, a mountain bike, roller skates, an Easy Bake Oven, even one year a Furbie which I got bored of in all of a week. The last few Christmases I have asked for most mundane things, things that are necessary and practical. The thing is that I still get the same excitement from these things as I used to get from toys as a child. Perhaps I have gotten old before my time if I am getting heart palpitations over a pair of socks. Nevertheless, on the day itself I still experience the same joy as I did as a little girl when opening my presents, and if I am honest, occasionally have a listen for reindeer on the roof. Now however, Christmas joy is no longer concentrated into one day of pure excitement and over indulgence. By spreading Christmas cheer over a series of months we are beginning to dilute the joy of Christmas just so we can make it last a little bit longer. As students I`m sure you can all relate to the feeling of dread as over-

A M I A MU G ? Rebecca Mulhearn


reetings Keele, I hope you`re well. If you are all seated comfortably I will begin. I have decided t o dedicate an article in Concourse each week to something very close to my heart; moaning. This week I would firstly like to shine light on a concern that has been seriously aggravating me for some time; wouldn`t you agree that it`s very convenient that we have our own Waterstones and Select and Save branches here on campus so that we never have to leave the Keele bubble? Well, don`t you find it even more convenient that these stores, on a university campus, don`t give student discount? Yes, you are hearing me correctly; they do not grant students any discount! Waterstones will offer you a `Waterstones` Discount Card` so that you can get a few pennies off your already over-priced paperback (soon to be covered in tea stains), but won`t accept a student discount card. When they are sited ON A UNIVERSITY CAMPUS! So all these students who were naive enough to spend ten whole pounds of their student loan on an NUS card can`t actually use the card ON THEIR OWN UNIVERSITY CAMPUS! I wonder which bright spark came up with that classic idea. Legend! My second point on the agenda this week is the laundrettes. Everyone has to use them. There`s no escaping it, I know a lot of you try and hold out until you`re home at Christmas and just accept the fact you smell and take it in your stride, but for the more hygienic Keele majority, the laundrette has to be endured at some point or other. Now, why is it, whenever you go into the laundrette, there will be one free washing machine that you quickly load all your clothes into, then when you try to put your pound coins in (that you had to get by breaking into a twenty by buy-

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8 th De cem ber 20 0 8

priced gifts are displayed all around you. Scrimping together every last penny and living off baked beans for the month or so leading up to Christmas, just so you can buy half decent presents for people. I wish I was still young enough to give pictures made of pasta and misspelt cards covered in glitter, but at this age it doesn`t quite bring the same warm glow to people as a Nintendo Wii. At least if need be we can write IOUs and go shopping in the January sales, the one good thing to come from an elongated Christmas. When Christmas eventually arrives I am usually all `Christmased-out.` I enjoy spending time with my family, seeing my friends, opening presents and everything that comes with the event, but it would be preferable not to have it turn into something I have to endure for a good part of the year. Please don`t think I`m being a Scrooge about this, I`m not, I like Christmas, most years I love it. I just feel that by stretching it as thin as we can for as long as possible we are missing out on everything that autumn has to offer us. I sincerely hope that you ended your October in fabulous Halloween attire, and that you all went to a firework display. Hopefully you haven`t wiled away the season doing your Christmas shopping.

ing chewing gum at Select and Save and they will always hate you a little bit for doing so), the machine will not accept the them? It just keeps spitting them straight back out again! WHY? Why do this to me? All my clothes are already in the machine, why will you just not wash them? So then, you have to stand there like a lemon and wait for some other washer woman to turn up and empty their machine so that you can pounce on it! By this time there is a queue forming, and in the harsh realities of the laundry world, pleasantries and manners are forgotten, it`s a jungle in there! Also, while I am on the topic, what is going on with this new extra 20p power wash malarkey? Has anyone actually paid the extra 20p for the power wash? What is the point? Again, I stress – we are on a UNIVERSITY campus! If someone used the super wash 5 times, they could have bought a pint from the Pig and Rat on a Thursday! Now I`ve put it into perspective, I think you`ll take my side! While on the topic of being ripped off I feel I MUST mention the new library rules that have been instigated this semester. Oh, these are a riot; we are not allowed the use of a stapler any more. If we want to use a stapler in the library, we must go and buy our own. Fine, that I can deal with. If some morons felt the need to damage the last stapler, then we must all live a stapleless life. However, things begin to get a little bit out of control when I ask the nicest looking librarian I could find (it wasn`t an easy task, I was looking for some time) if I could borrow her biro for 5 seconds to sign my name at the bottom of a form I had just printed out. I was told that I was not allowed to borrow biros from the library, but if I needed a biro I could buy one from her for 15p! Either the librarians are revolting and starting their own blackmarket discounted stationery organisation within the library walls, or my student fees really have been spent on the new university summer house in Barbados. It was a biro. I needed to use a biro for literally two seconds. My signature is only a swiggle. I probably could have got away with one wavy line. I`m fairly certain the pen wouldn`t have run out. I`m also fairly certain the big pen pot I was starring at, full to the brim with myriad pens was not going to run away in the night leaving every librarian penless. But no, I had to pay 15p for my biro and I vowed to keep hold of that biro until its dying day. (Inevitably I lent my biro to someone and haven`t seen it since). What did I do to deserve this unreasonable behaviour? I know there`s a credit crunch going on but seriously, behave!

8th December 2008

I will leave you with a small piece of advice: A friend and I had a scary moment a few days ago. You know your money situation is getting bad when you find yourself hung over the grubby freezer in Select and Save looking at the one pound frozen ready meals thinking two things; 1. These look nice and 2. I wish I could afford one. If this ever happens to you, calmly and quietly stand up, take a deep breath, slap yourself round the face with a `full English breakfast in a tin` and leave the store. Saying that, some budget purchases can never be criticised; 8p Tesco`s own brand lager is something to be respected – anyone with a digestive system strong enough to stomach that deserves a medal! Thanks for reading my weekly moan and grumble, don`t worry there`s plenty more where that came from so make sure you don`t miss it! As you would a fine wine or delicacy, I will suggest helpful accompaniments to my article and this week it has to be The Eagles – New York Minute and a mug of tea!





Jason Davies Environmental Officer


`d like to briefly explain why Keele People and Planet society and KEEN (the Keele environmental network with students and staf f) are still campaigning for the university to appoint an Environmental Manager who would increas e Ke ele Unive rsity`s environmental improvement. KEEN support:

KEEN has been campaigning for the university to hire a full time member of environmental staff as a key campaign aim last year. Andy Dobson, Keele`s renowned Environmental Politics professor from SPIRE, agrees that an environmental manager would `make a massive difference to Keele`s sustainability objectives. People and Planet have found that appointing an environmental manager is the single most important thing a university that`s serious about sustainability can do. It`s time to do it – now`.

Wide range of environment al improvements to be made:

Also due to the wide range of issues that students care about from transport, allotments, recycling, energy saving, attracting new green technology and green based curriculum subjects to suit the outside world it is imperative that Keele actually takes real action to address these problems, having a full time member of staff to address these issues would get Keele on the right path. Keele falls dramatically on national green league:

Keele fell down 38 places on the Keele green league to 76 out of 129 universities nationally this year. On the league significant weight is added to the importance of having a full time environmental member of staff in improving a university`s environmental improvement. People and Planet state on their website that `without the expertise and championing of full-time professional environmental management staff, it has been repeatedly demonstrated that green initiatives in universities are unlikely to be systematic, well coordinated and resourced, or have significant success. Environmental managers develop objectives and set priorities, with significant, time bound targets, and can coordinate the work to fulfill them.` Therefore an environmental manager would increase how Keele performs on this national table. We would not get near the top but with other improvements we would begin to catch up with other universities. As part of an overall sustainable strategy for the ultimate 21st Century campus:

If Keele is not recognized as a green university nationally then it will be more difficult to attract funding, green business and students for sustainability and environmental courses to Keele which the university is already trying to do. As part of the Environmental Policy for the university: The Keele Environmental policy under section 12.3; targets for monitoring of environmental performance includes the `appointment of an environmental officer to help promote and co-ordinate sustainability issues at Keele` and looks also to become from initial consultation with environmental groups across campus a possible top priority in the implementation of this policy. Arguments against; cost, can we really afford it?

People and Planet state on their website `while hiring a new member of staff and implementing some changes will cost money, environmental improvements can often save money`. Of many examples with environmental staff is `Edinburgh University which expects to save up to £100,000 on equipment running costs and associated fuel expenditure through a programme of building audits.` In addition, Salix funding for energy saving projects is also being tied to having certain environmental staff at the university and an environmental manager is seen as a benchmark for large requests for funding which Keele could apply for. Finally, universities have a moral responsibility to do everything they can to reduce their negative environmental impact especially as the higher education sector can offer real solutions to climate change globally and set itself as an example.

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

8 Features C L IM A TE C H AN G E : I S K E E L E T R YI N G H A R DE R ?

8 th De cem ber 20 0 8


David Tovell

Amy Gough


Amongst the numerous study abroad locations offered, I decided upon Iceland. Initially this was due to the links with the geological side of my course, but since being here the true beauty of the country has stood out. The University of Iceland has over 800 international students and a great support network, including weekly events to help you get the best of your experience. The university is situated in an amazing location and has everything you need to support your studies. Not only is Iceland a country full of volcanoes and glaciers, you also get the opportunity to see such things as whales and puffins on your doorstep in Reykjavik, not forgetting the regular appearances of the Northern lights. Outside Reykjavik the opportunities for travel are vast, and the sites that can be visited each feel like a completely different place to the last. Iceland is a truly unique location in everyway. If you decide to study here, you`ll get the chance to experience everything from natural hot springs to the Ibiza style nightlife on the weekend. On top of this, the Icelanders are welcoming and always willing to help with a strange, but great sense of humour. Reykjavik is not like any other capital. It`s surrounded by both sea and mountains. You can walk the streets and get the feeling that you are both in a large city and a small village. In the warmer months you can take advantage of the national parks, abundance of waterfalls and beautiful walks, and in the winter the sports range from ski resorts to ice skating on the city centre`s lake. All this is in close proximity to the city. As soon as you venture out of Reykjavik there are many other fantastic locations to visit, such as the Golden Circle and The Rift, where you can walk between continents. Despite it being such a different location I would truly recommend Iceland to anyone contemplating study abroad. My time here so far has been unforgettable.

n 2007 the national student network People and Plan et put together a `Green League` of all UK univ ersities using criteria like the use of renewab le energy, the viability of transport links and the use of recycling. Having ended up in the good but not ide al position of 38th out of 88 [excluding those who refused to submit data] the organisation gave Ke ele the verdict `must try harder`. The question we need to ask ourselves after almost a year is have we done so?

Although the verdict from People and Planet has not been ideal there has been a significant degree of progress made in certain areas. This includes the solar water-heating panel for the Horwood residential area and getting 60% of electricity used on campus from renewable sources. The expected appointment of a full time environmental officer in September is also a major step forward given the success other universities have had having done this. Environment and sustainability issues are becoming an increasingly high priority for the university and perhaps this is unavoidable due to the omnipresence of the issue. Whether it`s the recent flooding in India that displaced 1 million people or the new climate bill that will place increasing pressure on businesses to improve their energy efficiency it`s clear to see that climate change will be one of the major issues of the 20th century. It`s also one that ties into many others. For example global food shortages and conflicts in Darfur and Chad. Fortunately Keele is, in a good position, literally, to find solutions to this, given its favourable geographic position for generating cleaner forms of energy. Although the potential for solar energy is, perhaps, lacking at present there is certainly an abundance of wind [as many residents would agree, perhaps lamentably]. On top of this, and the innovative research Keele does in the area [ranging from fuel cells to environmental psychology] and the energy storage potential of the lakes. It would be tragic if these resources went unutilised. In a public lecture recently Patrick Bailey, the Dean of Natural Sciences outlined some of the ways in which Keele hopes to do this. These included small wind farms and the potential of using the campus for geothermal energy but the main focus was the large coal streams underneath the campus. Although coal isn`t the first thing that springs to mind when one thinks of sustainability there are methods available to utilise it while limiting the environmental damage. One such method is extracting the methane from the coal seam and pumping C02 back into it. Although this is not a renewable energy source itself this has the potential to dramatically reduce the university`s C02 emissions. However the question that needs to be asked is whether the

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

university should be going as far as coal extraction when 60% of its energy already comes from renewable sources. Or indeed whether given the extremity of the situation the focus should be on replacing fossil fuels rather then making then marginally better. What is clear though for us as individuals is the need to rise to the challenge of improving the university`s position, be it through tracking down the ever elusive recycling facilities [yes, they do exist, I was surprised too] or insuring the university`s promise of an environmental officer is kept.

8th December 2008




Gemma Newbold (ActiVE Secretary/Event Organiser) Sarah Lloyd (ActiVE Treasurer/Event Organiser)


Societies 9 B US IN E S S AN D E N T E R PR I SE S OC IE T Y ( K . B . E . S )

· The main aim of the society is to get students involved with all aspects of business by attending business related events such as work placement fairs and skills workshops, in order to give them the competitive edge when applying for jobs and aiding them to apply to summer internships proFriday 14th November was the day of the ActiVE Swap & Shop Extravaganza and the first charity fundraising event for the new grammes in order to gain valuable work experience. ActiVE committee. The tables were laden with items for sale: clothing, books, toys and more and many came to revel in the chance to · It`s not all business; we have lots of fun things planned such as paintpurchase such items. The ActiVE raffle was particularly successful, balling, Cadbury World, Fordhall farm and Alton Towers, and our weekly the sale of which resulted in the fortunate sum of £100 being raised social events. for Age Concern and Children in Need. The event was made all-themore successful with the help of a handful of ActiVE members who · We are recruiting members now, £3 to join. For this you will get subvolunteered their time, and for this we give them many thanks. sidised travel to events and a lot more. Furthermore, we attribute much of the event`s success to those who so kindly donated items for our charity raffle. Therefore, we would F u t u r e a n d p a s t e v e n t s : like to thank KPA for their donation of that massive bottle of whiskey, Keele Leisure centre for a whole month`s free gym mem- 30th October - Work Placement Fair bership, The Hair Shop for a free wash and cut, Union Shop for the 29th November - Business Start Up Fair really cute teddy and Lindsay Bar for 2 free cocktails and of course 30th January - Franchise Fair KUSU for the many free drinks vouchers and free entry to the Union 14th February - Paintball passes. So, thanks to all those generous folks! K.B.E.S will also be doing a 12 days of Christmas themed stall selling all For more information about ActiVE and future events, or if you kinds of festive goods such as reindeer ears, Christmas hats, mistletoe and k e e l e - candy canes. would like to get involved then email: acti v e@h otm ai l. co . u k. Chancellors building 1-12th of December 11-3pm Monday-Friday.

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper


Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

8th December 2008

Less Than Jake Interview

8th December 2008

By David Little

Anyone catch Less Than Jake on Thursday? For me fantastic would be an understatement, but what was even better was catching up with Chris (lead singer and guitarist) just before they went on stage. `Weʼve been good together for 16 years, weʼre still good friends, and weʼve learnt to live with each others bulls...`, quote from Chris when I asked him how long they have been playing together.

When asked about what his favourite song was to play live, he shocked me, answering a cover of Amy Winehouse's `Rehab`. Unfortunately they didnʼt treat us to a rendition, but Iʼm sure we can imagine what it would be like.



The Entertainments Department would like to say a big thank you to all the students that have come out and supported the events put on by the SU we hope you have enjoyed them. We would like to take this opportunity to give some love to all the students that gave up their free time to help us out, without you we couldn't have made the nights so special!! Have a great Xmas and we'll see you all again in the New Year for another unforgettable chapter of life on the Keele Bubbleship xxxxxxxx

For those that donʼt know, Vinnie the drummer and lyricist from the band also owns a toy company called Wünderland War. `Whatʼs it like working with someone who runs a toy company?` I asked. `It means we get given the left over stock as Christmas presents, which end up being passed around the family like an old fruit cake`.

One of my favourite albums by Less Than Jake has got to be the greased covers album, so I couldnʼt help but enquire into the inspiration for the album. It turns out that they put out a joke picture saying `Greased coming out soon`. When fans started sending them envelopes with money so that they could pre order an album that didnʼt exist, the band were forced to produce it.

ʻWhat was it like opening for Bon Jovi?` Chris responded `f*****g mad`! As Bon Jovi took to the jet, women from the ages of 16-60 were pounding at the gates to try and see him`.

Less than Jakeʼs latest album is now out. It is titled GNV FLA; named after the airport code for Gainesville Florida where the band originated. It is defiantly worth checking out and watch out for the video for the next single coming out soon, as it may include some footage from the Keele Gig! The interview closed with a message of advice from Chris to the fans at Keele. “Ladies, donʼt wipe back to front, youʼll get an infection!”

Big thanks to Chris Demakes and also Jim and Nick from the Big and Hairy KUBE show for their help with the interview. Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper


Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

8th December 2008


8th December 2008 Tom Darby KUBE Press


BAR SOCIETY DINING EVENT For the lawyers out there, the Bar Society is in the process of organising its annual Dining Event. Every year the Bar Society organises it’s own Dining Event, so students can get a taste of what an official event is like, without all the formal rules at the events held by the Inns of Courts.

This year there will be a mixture of barristers, judges and people from BVC providers, all giving speeches. This makes the night a great way to find out about the career path to the bar. It is also a great way to make i , a n d w e l c o m e t o t h e f i r s t ( s o m e w h a t b e l a t e d ) contacts in the legal profession who may then offer K U B E u p d a t e o f t h e y e a r ! I t h a s b e e n a v e r y you work placement. NO MATTER YOUR LEGAL b u s y s e m e s t e r f o r u s t h u s f a r , w e ' v e h a d a l o t o f ASPIRATIONS WORK EXPERIENCE IS VITAL. Also interesting stuff going on. there will be a live band to entertain you.


At the start of the semester we held elections for new committee members, where we appointed a new Head of Marketing and Head of News, as well as opening up a new position on the committee for Press Officer (which was filled by yours truly!). And we also started broadcasting in certain parts of the Union building during the daytime, which is a big step forward. Over the course of the last few weeks we've also had photographers and camera crews in the studio. They've been commissioned by the University to film and take photos for next year's online prospectus, and other promotional materials. For those of you who haven't ever been in the KUBE studio who are interested in seeing what kind of facilities we have, or just fancy being nosy, keep your attention fixed on the Keele website some time near the beginning of 2009, which is when those materials will be going online. In slightly more important news, a few weeks ago we went to the Student Radio Association Awards in London, after receiving nominations for awards in two categories. Unfortunately we won neither award, but the awards are very competetive, and these were our first nominations in 10 years, so we are proud to have even gotten that far. There's always hope for next year's awards though. Whilst we were all down in London for the awards, we spent the following morning as part of the studio audience for The Wright Stuff on Channel 5 - which was a lot of fun, and an eye opening experience into how television works behind the scenes. Hopefully we'll be organising similar trips soon, and when we do, I will of course be writing them here. Speaking socially, this semester we've held a successful launch party, which was followed up by a bar crawl social a few weeks later which was a lot of fun, and more recently we held a get together at the Pig and Rat. While we're on the topic, we have another one in the works right now, and we're aiming to make it big! On Wednesday December 11th we will be holding a KUBE Christmas Party, in either K2 or Sam's bar (once the venue is set there will be posters around campus, so keep an eye out!), from nine until late. So far we've already organised to get some professional DJs in to entertain you throughout the night, along with giveaways to all KUBE

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This year the Dining Event is being held on the 6th February 2009, at the North Stafford Hotel in Stoke. We will be offering transport to and from the hotel at the start and end of the night if there is a demand for it. The total cost for the event is £30, which is a good deal, considering what you can get out of the night. Posters about the event will be up about campus and tickets will be going on sale from 20th November until sometime in January, locations and times will be sent out by e-mail. I urge you to buy your ticket early to avoid disappointment on what will be a fun and informative evening. Jeremy President Bar Society members with shows who attend the party. We will also be holding a raffle, which we will be selling tickets for in the week leading up to the party, starting on Monday 8th December, in the union near the box office. Prizes include: Tickets to the Union's XXXmas party, Alton Towers tickets, drinks vouchers, plus a ton of other goodies, so it's well worth getting yourself a ticket. People with raffle tickets will also be able to get a discount on entry to the Christmas Party. Everyone is welcome, even people who aren't members of KUBE. It's going to be a great night. And if you're not a member of KUBE, but perhaps are interested in joining next semester at Refreshers, then this is the perfect opportunity for you to come along, meet us, and get to know who we all are. That's quite enough of the catching up, for now anyway. There's plenty of looking forward to do for KUBE, there's the aforementioned Christmas Party, we're also in the process of revamping our website to make it more accessible, so keep an eye out there, and as usual keep listening to shows for some quality content, along with plenty of interviews and giveaways. Next semester we're planning to get more goodies sent to us to give away to listeners on air, giving you even more reason to listen. If you're interested in joining KUBE at all, then keep an eye out for us at Refreshers at the start of next semester, we'd love more people to join, and it means you have an opportunity to have your own radio show! Keep a look out for the next Concourse for further details on all things KUBE, you can also join our Facebook group which you can find by searching for "KUBE radio" on Facebook, and finally keep an eye on w w w . k u b e r a d i o . c o m for important updates, news, and to listen to our shows.


8th December 2008


Mike Fryatt Motorsport President


t has been dubbed one of the best season finales in Formula One history, Lewis Hamilton only needing fifth place to claim his first F1 championship and become the youngest ever champion.

The tension was already high even before the race started on the Sunday, after Felipe Massa qualified pole and Lewis Hamilton fifth, if they were to finish in those positions, the title was Hamilton`s. If either dropped a place the title could swing either way, and as they got ready for the off, the heavens above Brazil`s Interlagos Circuit opened with a sudden downpour, flooding half the track but leaving the other half dry, messing up just about everyone`s race strategy. Despite an action filled opening few laps, this was hardly one of the most interesting races of the season, dragging on slightly. As the pack started settle into the race, the rain stopped, Massa was clear at the front, Hamilton was slotted into a championship winning position and the world watched with bated breath. A spur of genius from the Renault and Toro Rosso mechanics brought their number ones in early for dry tyres putting them right at the front, albeit still chasing a brilliant Massa. Sadly, David Coulthard`s last race in Formula One was cut short after a first corner incident with Williams` driver Nico Rosberg on the first lap, an unfortunate ending to one of Formula One`s most respected names. All the teams in the paddock were expecting no more rain for the remainder of the race, which suited McLaren as it meant Hamilton could have a relatively boring drive to the chequered flag. However, the drama of the GP had only just begun, with ten laps remaining, team radios flared into gear as weather reports came in and more rain was to be expected in ten minutes. Most realised it wasn`t worth the risk leaving their drivers out on dry tyres in the wet when so much was at stake. Massa pitted before Hamilton joined him to make the switch to wet tyres but as he came out the rain was already dying down; it hadn`t rained enough for Hamilton take advantage of the new tyres and a charging Sebastien Vettel was more than ready to push him all the way to the line. It had been a bad day for BMW`s Robert Kubica, struggling to find the pace in Sao Paolo after being a championship leader earlier in the season. He certainly didn`t appreciate being a back-marker and proceeded to un-lap himself and Hamilton was more than happy to let him pass rather than cause an accident, he probably wasn`t betting on Vettel sneaking through as well however. This dropped Hamilton to sixth which meant he wasn`t going to win the championship as it seemed Massa was unstoppable, just as he was the previous two years at the circuit. As they raced their ways through the drier parts of the track Vettel showed his pace, leaving Hamilton trailing and struggling for both pace and grip. Massa took the chequered flag to elation from the Brazilian

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crowd but nails were still being bitten in the Ferrari garage as his family and team watched to see where Hamilton would finish. As they approached the second to last corner, Hamilton still trailed to Vettel but as they made their way up the very steep and now rather wet part of the track which leads up to the pit straight, the Brit was thrown a lifeline. Timo Glock was still on dry tyres. He had not made the switch to wet as the rain came in toward the end of the race, his pace had continued to be good so it was thought there was no way that Hamilton and Vettel would be close enough to him to pass by the end of the race, but out of nowhere Glock slowed, allowing Vettel, Hamilton and a back-marker through and dropping him to sixth. The Massa Family were already celebrating but upon news of Hamilton crossing the line in fifth they were in complete shock and the sound of boos echoed throughout every grandstand. Glock insists that he did not let Lewis past so that he could win the title and McLaren claim that his pace was dropping enough for Lewis to catch on the last lap but I think a lot of neutrals see the last corner incident highly suspect. `Six laps from the end I asked about the tyre situation and about the weather conditions, and I said every time 'I'll stay out, one more lap, one more lap and at the end I stayed out for the whole race,` Glock. I`m sure most Lewis Hamilton fans would be quick to deny any foul play and that Hamilton simply took the title because he deserved it. However despite being a brilliantly dramatic ending, I think history won`t remember this as a great victory, but a controversial one.


8th December 2008

Lauren Fuzi KPA Chair


N EW C OMMITTEE M EMBERS E LECTED The KPA welcomes the newest editions to it`s family. S h af r az Mo h id e e n – I n t e rn a t io n al Po s t g ra d u at e O f f ic e r If you`re an international student and have any problems or would like some advice, please contact Shafraz. His email address is

of apology and an offer to apply for a leave of absence. However, this letter has not been sent to all students, only to those on continuation and those who contacted the KPA directly. If you have not received this Jenna Griffiths – Postgraduat e Welfare Officer letter and would like to, please email Allan Howells a . h o w e l l s @ v c o . k e e l e . a c . u k . In addition, if you feel that your studJenna will have consultation hours every Tuesday between 5.30 and 6.30 ies have been disrupted because of the office moves, and you would like in the KPA Clubhouse. She will be available to give advice on all acad- to apply for a leave of absence, please contact Allan Howells on the emic and welfare issues. You could also email her if you have any above email address. Continuation students also now have access to questions or problems. Her email is lockable storage space. If you have not been given access to this space, then please email Carol Hough. Her address is Wei Wei Cao – PGR Representative for Humanities and c . a . h ou g h @ h u m s s . k e e le .a c . u k . Social Sciences Postgrad uate Taught Student Accommodation Contracts Wei Wei will act as a link between the KPA and the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. She plans to organise social events and It has been brought to the KPA`s attention that the end of the accomdiscussion groups for the faculty to help build a stronger postgraduate modation contract for PGTs is earlier than some students` dissertation community. If you have any questions for her please email her. Her deadlines by a period of 1-2 weeks. This means that some students are address is having to vacate their room and find alternative accommodation before their course has finished. This is particularly difficult for international students. The KPA has raised this issue at Postgraduate Executive Liaison Committee and University Learning and Teaching Committee. Changes to Immigration Laws


Recent changes to immigration law mean that, from next year, Universities will have to report to the Border Agency any absences by overseas students from lectures, seminars or tutorials or any failure to submit any assessment on time. Universities are basically being asked to act as immigration officers and to inform on their students. The KPA is concerned by these draconian changes. The KPA would like to know how the University will respond to these new requirements in a way that does not promote racism and inequality. If you are also concerned about these changes please email your concerns to the Vice-Chancellor. Her email address is j . v . f i n c h @ v c o . k e e l e . a c . u k .

Workload Allocation Model (WAM) As noted in the last report to Senate, postgraduates have expressed concerns over the WAM. The KPA has raised this issue in various forums and has been informed that there will be no early review. The KPA will continue to collate information to present to the University when the WAM is reviewed next year. This is a worrying issue, especially in light of the low research student numbers. Postgraduate Office Moves After negotiations with the University, students have been sent a letter

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper



8th December 2008





ou Reed has always been an enthralling artist, from fronting the innovative Velvet Underground to

Ldiverse solo pieces, and his magnum opus `Berlin` has gained increasing critical acclaim over the

years. Berlin was initially recorded in 1973 and was commercially ignored upon release: it was never played live. In December 2006 however, Reed performed the album at St. Ann`s Warehouse in Brooklyn, with filmmaker and artist Julian Schnabel capturing the show for prosperity. This film exhibits Reed`s performance cut with hazy images of actors portraying the tales of Caroline (the album`s central character), creating a stunning reverie of sound and vision. The proceedings are dominated by Reed`s innate authority and understated emotion, he seemingly raises the ghosts of love, loss and despair with ease; perhaps they were never dead though. Possibly the more `upbeat` numbers fall slightly short of the intensity found amongst the more poignant songs, where the intricacies of human sorrow are irretrievably laid bare and although this concert is also available on CD, the body language of Reed is haunted by as many ghosts as his lyrics, making this film the ideal way to enjoy this concert. Additional appeal comes from the fact that most of the camera work is by way of hand held cameras, lending itself to an intimate and natural feel. After running through the Berlin material, the encore consists of songs taken from the rest of Reed`s back catalogue, featuring a powerful performance of `Candy Says`, with Anthony (from Anthony and the Johnsons) sharing vocal duties to devastating effect. This film not only shows that Lou Reed and his work are still important, it portrays an emotive experience with due grace and finesse.



his self titled debut album proposes a Ballard-esque marriage of sinister technologies with shadowy

Thuman tendencies. The underlying rhythm fuses a Teutonic style with industrialized beats, creating

room for sheets of feedback and distortion to glide in and out of; forming ferociously engineered stratums of sound. But there are melodies (beguiling and sincere) delivered by Oliver Ackermann`s stubbornly conversational vocals, defying the intermittent discharges of speaker shredding violence. However, this collection is not flawless, after stridently racing towards the glacial grandeur of `the falling sun`, the music perhaps loses momentum and meanders, with the material sounding like a faintly diluted homage to Joy Division and My Bloody Valentine (reference points most commentators cling too). Fortunately, the Brooklyn based three piece (of whom the aforementioned singer/guitarist has his own effects company fittingly titled `Death by Audio`) regain their poise for the final few tracks, ending with the tour de force `ocean` where a captivating groove finally gets overtaken by waves of feedback, that contest with each other before climaxing into sonic annihilation. This is intrepid noise pop, music to be played loud.

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

8th December 2008







n Friday 14th November 2008, stu dents and staff at Keele were encouraged to dress up or down, or to wear fancy dress . The Student s` Union put in place a number of collection tins across the campus and held a Tombola and Table Top stall in the Students` Union Ballroom in aid of BBC Children in Need. A grand total of £107.60 was raised throughout the day, including a £10.00 donation from Keele Student Society, ActiVE. Thanks must go to those people who made the effort to dress up and to everyone who made a donation. Becky Taylor, VE @ Keele Project Leader at the Students` Union, said `People have been very generous and the amount we have raised will hopefully help to make a real difference to children and young people in projects across the UK`.

VOLUNTEERING – GETTING STARTED Many of our volunteers have now found a volunteer placement with an organization in the local community such as the Citizen`s Advice Bureau, Oxfam, Newcastle Countryside Project and Caudwell Children. Several VE volunteers are working towards one of our four VE @ Keele Awards, whilst others are completing a Student Volunteering CSP Module. What do these volunteers have in common? All will be enjoying new experiences and challenges, learning new skills and making a real difference in communities across Stoke and Staffordshire! If you are interested in volunteering, or have signed up for a Student Volunteering CSP module, but have not yet registered with VE @ Keele, you can still do this and begin your search for a suitable volunteer placement. VE @ Keele currently has around 140 organizations registered onto their database and staff can help you to find the right volunteer opportunity for you! Just call into the VE office for more information, or email: v o l u n t e e r i n g @ k u s u . k e e l e . a c . u k for information. For those Keele students who are working towards a VE @ Keele Award, or are completing a Student Volunteering CSP Module, remember to inform the VE office of where you are volunteering when you take up a new placement, and submit your Hours Log regularly. These will provide important information to enable VE @ Keele staff to check your placement provider is registered with VE @ Keele, and that you are meeting the required minimum number of volunteering hours to complete an Award. If you are unsure about any aspect of volunteering through VE @ Keele, or need any more information, contact VE @ Keele for advice.

Signing up to volunteer t hrough VE @ Keele is easy and is a great way to gain new skills, meet people, make a difference in the community and gain an award in recognition of your volunteering experience.

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper





8th December 2008 N E AR L Y A RR I V IN G H E RE AR E S OM E






The standard rate of VAT has been reduced from 17.5% to 15%, as of 1st December 08. The standard rate applies to many goods and services you buy in the UK except for food, When you buy something from a shop or street market you and the seller are mak- newspapers, magazines, children`s clothes and books as these are already zero-rated VAT items. ing a legal contract.


The law says that goods you buy: · Must be of satisfactory quality and be safe · Must not be damaged or defective unless the person selling them to you points out a fault or which would have been revealed under a pre-contract examination · Must be fit for the purpose for which the seller knows you are buying them · Must be as they are described by the seller, or on the package or display sign –e.g. if a shirt is said to be 100 per cent cotton it mustn`t be made of polyester. You have the same rights when you buy something in a sale.

N.B. If an item is of satisfactory quality and is described correctly, retailers are under no obligation to exchange it or give you a refund e.g. if you don`t like the colour, although many do in the interests of customer relations.

Internet Shopping – some quick tips: · Be wary of companies that only use a PO Box number – get a full address. · Don`t assume a company is UK based because it has `uk` in its web address – get a full postal address. · Keep copies of emails and sales confirmations. · If your purchase is for more than £100, using your credit card to pay may give you more protection if things go wrong. The Paying Process You have extra protection if you pay by credit for goods and services that cost more than £100 for one item (but less than £30,000), because the credit card issuer, as well as the supplier, may well be liable if something goes wrong. If you need to make a deposit use your credit card instead of a cheque, cash or debit card if the total bill for one item will be more than £100. If the trader stops trading or fails to fulfil the contract, you may have additional rights. Not happy with your goods? How to complain: · Inform the trader quickly if you want to be able to claim a refund. It may be a good idea to put this in writing. · Go back to the trader as soon as you can with a receipt or other proof of purchase. · Explain what the problem is, say what result you expect and set a deadline for the problem to be solved. · If you complain on the phone make a note of who you are speaking to and have all your receipts, documents with you, make a note of what is said. · If you complain in writing summarise when and how you brought the goods, the price, what is wrong and any action you have already taken. Explain what results you want, do not send original documents send copies and use special or recorded delivery. Still need help? Contact the Independent Advice Unit or call Consumer Direct on 08454 04 05 06.

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

In short this means that goods you buy will be a little cheaper.!

APPLYING FOR LONGER LEAVE TO STAY IN THE UK: CHANGES TO IMMIGRATION RULES The forms to extend your leave to remain as a student have changed again, if you are applying now make sure you have the correct form. Also students who need to extend their leave to remain in the UK will be now be provided with a biometric identity card, it is the new way in which the Home Office will grant extensions to students who wish to stay in the UK for more study. It is the shape of a credit card and shows your photo on the front, together with information about how long your extension is. It also shows whether you are allowed to do any work, and tells you if you are required to register with the police. It will be issued to people who apply for student extensions (and their husband or wife or civil partner and children, if they apply on the same form) from 25 November 2008 onwards. The card includes a microchip which contains two of the card holder`s fingerprints, and the photo on the front is a digital photo. If you apply for a student extension from 25 November 2008 onwards, you will have to go and give your fingerprints and have your photo taken as part of the application process (at centres in Croydon, Sheffield, Liverpool, Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, and Armagh). This means that even if you apply by post you will still need to visit one of these offices in person. If you apply by post you will receive a letter asking you to make an appointment to give these details. The letter will not give you very much time so you should be ready to travel at quite short notice. When you apply for your leave to be extended, you will need to send in a letter from the University confirming you are enrolled on a course at Keele, these letters now need also to confirm details about your fees, so the University will need a longer time to gather the information. You will now need to ask the University for these letters at least five days before you need it to take with you or send off with your application. New rules will also mean you cannot change your immigration status from being a student to being a visitor while you are still in the UK. If you would like information on any of these issues or any others please call in to the Independent Advice Unit to see an Advisor.


8th December 2008

E G M - T U E S DA Y 9 T H D E C E M B E R 2 0 0 8 C OM E AN D VO I CE YO U R O PI N IO N O N T H E


V I CE - P R E S ID E N T ( S PO R T & F I TN E S S) . L I KE IT ? T HE N SA Y S O! D ON ` T LIK E IT ? T H E N P R OP OS E TO AM E N D I T! What will they do? Whilst the overall job description still will have has be approved by UGM after this EGM, the aim is for this role to have responsibility for promoting sport at Keele to students, staff, and the local community so that we can make the best use of our facilities. We also aim for them to have a say in non-competitive sporting societies as well as working on health issues which affect the entire campus. Why are they needed? A lot of Universities already have a VP Sports Sabbatical of some description, and we feel that in order for Keele to compete in attracting players of international standard (of which we already have a few of by chance) and in making outreaches to the local community we need a full time Sabbatical role. It also means that you get another full time representative. What about the AU? Whilst the VP Sports Sabbatical will obviously have some of their time dedicated to the AU, most of their time will be spent coordinating the promotion of sport at Keele and working with students to improve facilities, carry out health initiatives and look after sporting societies.


W ar wi ck O p en N ov i ces Fenci n g Competition


n Saturday 22nd November Keele Un iversity Fencing Club sent a group of novice fenc ers to the f oil tournament at the University of Warwick in Coventry. The annual event always attracts a large number of beginner fencers and this year served as a good introduction to competitive fencing for the small group of Keeleites. The competition began in the late morning with two rounds of six person pools, each individual having the chance to cross swords with ten different competitors. After lunch the competition then became direct elimination with the most capable new sportsmen and women fighting multiple matches to reach the later stages. Of the nine fencers that our club sent on the day most of them were first years who had been participating in the sport for less than two months. However the performances of our entrants did not betray their lack of experience and although we did not win the day everyone did extremely well. Special mention must be made of beginner fencer Thijs Lemmens who came third place out of fifty one men. Two other Keeleites also came within the top ten places in the men`s competition and everyone who fenced, regardless of their final position, gained a great deal of experience through attending. As anyone who has fenced for less than two years is classed as a novice and can therefore participate in the Warwick Open I look forward to seeing how well our beginners do a year from now when they return. By Simon Chandler.

When would the role become effective? The role would be voted in as a position in the elections of 2009, with the new sabbatical taking up office in July 2009. So far the job description is as follows: a) In the first instance, the VP (Sport and Fitness) shall be responsible for safeguarding health and fitness of students, whilst ensuring that representative and participative sport has a voice. (b) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall monitor the above issues and develop policies accordingly. He/she shall act as a representative for these concerns by liaising with the appropriate University bodies; sitting on such bodies as may be prescribed by University regulations. (c) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall actively ensure all students are afforded the same opportunities for participation. (d) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall provide a sporting and healthy living vision that will develop and enhance students. (e) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall look into and maximise fundraising opportunities in order to developing facilities and meet the demands of our students. (f) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall aid in establishing sports and fitness development by introducing an instructing and coaching programme to Keele that will provide better links with the local community and opportunities for students to volunteer in sport and

Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

fitness activities. (g) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall liaise with the AU President to actively encourage participation not only in competitive sport but also in recreation. (h) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall work closely with the VP (Finance and Activities) for ensuring the best possible experience for those involved in non-competitive sporting and fitness activities, (i) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall liaise with the Halls Councils and be responsible for the organisation, running and promotion of inter-halls competitions and other events. (j) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall work closely with VP (Education and Welfare) on relevant health campaigns. (k) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall enhance and facilitate our representation at national and regional meetings specifically on the British University and Colleges Sport (BUCS) Regional Board. (l) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall sit on Union Committee, Staffing Committee and Financial & General Purposes Committee. (m) The VP (Sport and Fitness) shall play an active role in University Open and Visit days.



Sonia Douz Athletic Union Deputy President

8th December 2008


The AU Christmas Ball was a great success and we`d like to say thank you to everyone who came. Special thanks goes to Keith Harrison who, after ten years of coaching the football club for free, has had the BUCS Team of the Year award named after him and a new trophy made to commemorate this occasion.

The EGM for the VP Sport and Fitness is fast approaching on the Tuesday 9th December. We hope that as many Keele students, AU members or not, turn out to help us debate the job description of this potential new Sabbatical position. (See inside for the proposed job description).

We would like to wish all AU members continued success with their fixtures until the end of December and hope they have a very merry Christmas! never to get tired and it allowed many of the freshers valuable match experience. One of those Tom `Virgin 1` Bowen Keele Lacrosse Men`s 1st Tiger s scored his first men`s goal with an excelV s . L a n c a s t e r 1 s t - W e d n e s d a y lent dodge and shot. Hincks and Khan added their second goals of the match. 1 2t h N o vemb er 2 0 08 With such overwhelming possession it meant that the Keele defenders of Craig Rosenbloom, Rupert Day, James K eel e Men `s Ti g ers - 13 Goodchild, James Roberts, Luke Crowley Lancaster 1sts - 1 and goalkeepers Stephen Johns and Rafiq Kanji didn`t have much to do for most of the match. s the Guinness adverts say `Good things come to Club Captain Scott Little playing short those who wait`, it was certainly true of Keele men`s lacrosse who finally recorded their first win of the sea- stick instead of usual long stick added son with a tremendous display against Lancaster two more as well as Bowen getting his University. The Tigers had been continually improving second of the match. As the match came to an end Jack Low with every match and this was their reward for their perscored his first goal for the club (in three sistence. years) and unfortunately Defender Craig The game was always going to be tricky after days of Rosenbloom`s goal was disallowed even poor weather had reduced parts of the pitch to a quag- after a tremendous shot with a long pole mire. Even so, both teams made the most out the con- that matched his other long stick goal the week earlier against Liverpool. ditions to produce a quality game of lacrosse. Captain Shezhaad Khan was thoroughly The Tigers as usual came out roaring and took a three nil lead within the first 10 minutes with Oli Quick find- satisfied with his side`s performance. He ing gaping holes in the Lancaster defence and punishing said `we knew it was going to be a hard them for it. Unlike most matches the Tigers kept up match but we came out with the right their momentum with slick passing and running and cre- attitude and stuck to our game plan and ated numerous shooting chances but with Lancaster`s it paid off wonderfully.` Let`s hope this goalie having a tremendous day, the score line was not result will be the sign of things to come for the Tigers as they battle on in their as high as it should have been. Keele continued to attack using the wide pitch to their first season in BUCS. S t e p h e n J o n e s . advantage. Soon Edward Hincks and men`s Captain Shezhaad Khan got their names on the score sheet. Although even with Keele`s dominance Lancaster had some chances themselves but squandered many of them with either poor passing or catching. One of their runs did pay off with them scoring their only goal of the game. The second half was much of the same and Khan was doing an excellent job at the face-offs winning nearly every one to allow Keele to keep up the pressure on Lancaster. Having a large squad allowed the Tigers

EGM - Tuesday 9th December 2008, 19:30, Ballroom


Keele University Students’ Union Newspaper

Next Wednesday`s Home Fixtures - December 10th 2008 Fencing Men`s 1st Vs. Manchester 1st Football Women`s 1st Vs. Liverpool 1st Hockey Women`s 1st Vs. MMU Cheshire 1st Hockey Men`s 2nd Vs. Bolton 1st Lacrosse Women`s 1st Vs. Leeds Met 1st Netball Women`s 2nd Vs. Cumbria 2nd

Concourse Issue Five 2008/09  

Semester One: The View from KUSU

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