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Worcester international news

THE UNIVERSITY OF WORCESTER INTERNATIONAL NEWSLETTER

Summer 2010

In this issue:

Welcome to the City Campus

Is now very much open for business.

India Pay Visit to Worcester Five academics from India visited

‘Mr China’

...bids a fond farewell

A Greener & Better, St. Johns It’s Easy To Overlook The Huge Amount Of Work Undertaken


Cover Story

A warm welcome for the new International Centre staff members The new Graduate Intern, Julian Dimov from Bulgaria and the newly appointed European Marketing Recruitment Officer, Chloe Pattison joined the International Centre team this Academic Year. Julian Dimov recently graduated from Worcester Business School and successfully completed his course in Business, Marketing and Advertising with First Class honours. He benefited from the Graduate Internship Scheme launched for a second consecutive year at the University securing a place after a tough competition for the International Centre internship. This year Julian will be dealing with online marketing and promotion. He has already set up a Facebook page for the International Centre with new advanced features which will strengthen the connection with the current International students. Julian is also aiming to increase current online communication with both prospective students and University representatives through alternative social networking sites, live chat forums as well as more effective and efficient e-mail correspondence. “Three years ago, International Centre members welcomed me as a regular European student who was eager to study in the UK. I did my best to achieve a positive outcome and successfully fulfil my studies. I didn’t imagine graduating with a First and working in the International Centre as a full-time member but this dream has come true indeed. I am certain that every single International student who is keen and motivated to succeed could be in my place. University of Worcester has given me the strong support to realise my potential for which I am really thankful.” Chloe Pattison, the new European Marketing and Recruitment Officer, is looking forward to her exciting and challenging role at the University of Worcester. Chloe previously worked as a ‘Schools and Colleges’ Liaison Co-ordinator’ at the University College Plymouth St Mark & St John, undertaking UK student recruitment and Widening Participation activities. Before that, she worked for the Cornwall Tourist Board where she had the opportunity to become involved

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in European funded projects which took her to German and Swiss cities, promoting the counties of Devon and Cornwall. Chloe is passionate about different cultures and languages, having studied Modern Languages and European Studies at the University of Bath and spent a year teaching English in Austria as part of her degree course. “Everyone has been so welcoming and friendly, it seems like a great innovative place to work. I will be aiming to build on the success already achieved within the International Centre and contribute to the internationalisation of the University. I didn’t think it was possible to combine all my main interests in a job but I think I have found a job that does just that!”


COVER STORY news INTERNATIONAL

University Welcomes Third Commonwealth Scholarship Student The University of Worcester is celebrating the arrival of its third Commonwealth scholarship student. Joseph Musasizi, from Uganda, is studying for a Masters degree in Advancing Practice as part of the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme. The scheme, which is a joint initiative between the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and UK universities, supports scholarships for students from developing Commonwealth countries who would not otherwise be able to study in the United Kingdom. Joseph, age 25, said: “Worcester is very nice and the people are very friendly. This is the first time I have been to the UK and I like it very much. “I am very much looking forward to spending the next year studying here.” Joseph studied for a degree in Social Work and Social Administration in Uganda and is hoping this Masters degree will help him to pursue a successful career in social work in his home country. The University of Worcester’s first Commonwealth scholarship student, Nilanga Abeysinghe, from Sri Lanka, studied for a Masters degree in Applied Psychology. The second Commonwealth scholarship student, Angela Nyambane, from Kenya, studied for a Masters degree in Education. The University has secured funding for two Commonwealth scholarship students for 2011/12. University of Worcester Vice Chancellor, Professor David Green, said: “We are delighted to welcome Joseph to the University of Worcester. We are very pleased that a top scholarship winning student such as Joseph, who could choose to study anywhere, has chosen to study on this excellent course here in Worcester. 

Joseph Musasizi with University of Worcester Vice Chancellor, Professor David Green

“We hope that Joseph will enjoy the rest of his time at the University, and are sure that the skills and knowledge he gains on this course will help him make a real difference when he returns to work in Uganda.”

international@worc.ac.uk / WINTER 2010 / 3


NEWS & VIEWS

Welcome to the

City Campus

With significantly increased applications to the University of Worcester over the last few years, we are investing heavily to expand and improve our facilities. Central to this expansion is the stunning new £15 million Business School development at our City Campus in the centre of the historic city of Worcester. It is ideally located with excellent accessibility via road and rail and just a short walk or cycle ride from the University’s other sites at Riverside and St John’s. Housed within a beautiful restored Georgian building, the Business School teaching spaces have been designed to reflect a real world business and office environment with open-plan, multidirectional learning areas,

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interconnected with a boardroom, meeting rooms, offices, reception area, and support services. This is complemented by a range of state-of-the-art facilities including three computer labs, purpose built games development and networks laboratory and an incubator unit specifically designed to host budding entrepreneurs. These facilities are enhanced by ‘next door’ location to staff offices, Halls of Residence, social learning and meeting areas, a cafeteria, well-being centre, fitness facilities and quiet contemplative spaces for meditation and relaxation.


NEWS & VIEWS

Worcester’s Library & History Centre starts to take shape Construction work on all five levels of Worcester’s new £60 million library and history centre is now nearing completion. Among the facilities already constructed on the Butts site are seven strongrooms large enough to hold all of the county’s archives. The collection includes manuscripts, books, maps, plans, photographs and audiovisual material. When the Centre is completed it will be the first time that all of these materials have been collected together in one place. The Centre, a joint project between the University of Worcester and Worcestershire County Council, will also include one of the largest children’s libraries in the UK.

“Visitors can delve into learning, use the building as a meeting place, borrow books and gain a wide range of information. “There is something for everyone and so many different reasons for coming into the centre.”

The Worcestershire Hub customer service centre will also be housed there and all facilities will be available to members of the public. Kathy Kirk, member of the project board and Strategic Library and Learning Manager at Worcestershire County Council, said: “This isn’t just another library or an updated record office and history centre, or a relocated customer service centre – it’s an entirely new way of integrating the facilities that will really make a difference to Worcestershire residents.

“People will be able to use the rich array of resources and staff expertise in one place for the first time in Europe. This is such an exciting project.

The centre, which will create hundreds of jobs, is due to be opened to the public in July 2012.

Galliford Try construction worker inserting piles into the ground, to support the building

Professor David Green and Dr Lord celebrate the start of building work with pupils

A tour of the site before construction begins shows children where parts of the building will be

international@worc.ac.uk / WINTER 2010 / 5


FEATURE

A&Greener Better St. John’s WITH ALL OF THE UNDERSTANDABLE EXCITEMENT OVER DEVELOPMENTS AT THE CITY CAMPUS, IT’S EASY TO OVERLOOK THE HUGE AMOUNT OF WORK UNDERTAKEN ON THE ST JOHN’S CAMPUS IN RECENT MONTHS. Probably the most visible development is the new Astroturf, built on the rugby pitch towards the Severn Gate. The new pitch was built with the aid of a £232,000 grant from the Football Foundation, the country’s largest sports charity. Work on the pitch proceeded far quicker than anticipated. The contractors were so fast in their work that they ended up 12 weeks ahead of programme but then had to wait for delivery of the new 3G artificial all weather sports surface. The surface is now compete and offers an impressive ‘real grass’ look and feel. Other developments on the St John’s Campus over the summer include: A full refurbishment of William • Morris Hall, including redecoration, new kitchens, new showers, improved emergency lighting and new flooring • New floors fitted in five other Halls • The creation of six new edit suites between Binyon and the Art block • The addition of new internal and external fire doors and improvements to the fire alarms in Bredon. The spurs recently

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vacated by Worcester Business School have also been refurbished. • New carpet on the first floor of the Peirson Building • The refurbishment of eight toilet blocks • A £150,000 renovation of the Students’ Union


FEATURE

Leading Academics from

India Visit Worcester

In September, five academics from India visited the University of Worcester to explore the opportunities of establishing a partnership with us in the future. The British Council facilitated a number of meetings between academics from various Indian institutions to higher education institutions in the UK and Worcester was one of a few selected universities in the UK to participate. 

Chris Taylor, International Recruitment Officer at the University of Worcester, said: “We were really delighted to be selected by the British Council as one of the host universities and really pleased to welcome our colleagues from India.  Already we have had some very positive feedback from the visit and discussed the possibility of working closer with at least one of the visiting institutions.”

With the Prime Minister’s recent push for the UK to work more closely with India, the aim of the visit was to work together on academic collaborations, faculty and student exchanges and share best practice. The meeting allowed staff at the University of Worcester to share ideas and knowledge of the sector with the representatives from India, which would lead to stronger possibilities for tie-ups and collaborations in the future.

international@worc.ac.uk / WINTER 2010 / 7


INTERVIEW

Interview with the International Committee Officers In this edition we meet two members of the newly set up International Committee which has become part of the Worcester Students’ Union (SU). We asked them questions about what the Committee will offer the new international students and in what way they are going to improve their university life. Elisa is a second year Business, Management and Economics student from Finland and Andrius, from Lithuania, is also a second year student at Worcester Business School studying Finance and Economics. They are both representing Europe and had the pleasure to answer the following questions.

Tell me more about the International Committee? “Well, the purpose of the committee is really to help new international students become part of the University of Worcester and Students’ Union. It is important that we meet and greet them, help them settle down and feel comfortable. It is good to know someone before they come to Worcester. We have created a Facebook group in order to get in touch more easily with the first year and prospective international students. The students can find us on Facebook under the name ‘International Committee’.” Why did you decide to organise a students’ International Committee? “The idea was that we wanted to have something for the international students, we have got the Students’ Union but it is for all students. We wanted something closer to the international students. It is easier for us to understand them. We are like-minded people and we have been through the same situation last year. Our committee is actually part of the Students’ Union but more focused on representing the international students really. We are trying to support everyone with everything, and then later on, we might concentrate on specific issues that we notice more. At first we thought that the officers will be elected for a whole year but after that it might be every six months. The international students will get the chance to vote for the officers as this year Kari, our president, elected them.” How do you think this Committee would help the current international students’ experience? “I hope the Committee is going to make it more pleasant and warmer. We will make every effort to support the international students and help them adapt to the new environment in addition to the SU and International Centre support.” “I think that it is better for the students to gather information not only from what they have seen in the leaflets and brochures

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but also from the current international students who work in the committee. I am sure that every potential international student would like to hear more about University of Worcester from the existing students. We would like to create that link so everyone could benefit from our experienced international student officers.” Does the Committee have any specific plan for this year? “We especially thought about international week, we are planning to ask current students what might have gone wrong, so we can tackle those issues and don’t make the same mistakes again in the future. We are planning to do it online like anonymous surveys through Facebook. We are working closely with a Nations Zone society which is also run by international students. They organise parties, events and trips. It will be easier if we have everyone in the International Committee Facebook list so they can all be informed about the activities of the Society and Committee likewise.” What would be your message to the international students and the University for this academic year? “For the students, we wish them to enjoy this academic year, enjoy the experiences they get, not get stressed about issues because there is always someone who can help them, and certainly they won’t be alone. For the University, we wish to keep building on its current success and keep growing its reputation overseas.”


John first joined the University in 1972

FEATURE

‘Mr China’ ...bids a fond farewell

JOHN NIXON, DUBBED ‘MR CHINA’, HAS RETIRED FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF WORCESTER, 38 YEARS AFTER FIRST JOINING.

Since then he has built invaluable links with the nation, earning himself the title of ‘Mr China’ within the University. He has also had extensive links with Finnish universities and colleagues within the Finnish Government Department of Education.

John has headed up the University’s China office for the past 12 years, dealing with everything from recruitment to the welfare issues of Chinese students. John, from Wyre Piddle, said: “Thirty-eight years is a long time, but it is a tremendous privilege to John joined the University in 1972 as a member have worked here. I have made so many friends, of teaching staff. From 1977 until 1995 he was the not only at the University but across the globe. Director of Studies for the one year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE ), increasing numbers from 65 to 250. John went on to hold two British Council Teaching scholarships, in Bucharest and lasi Universities, in Romania, in the late 1970s and early 80s together with work in Brussels and the USA for Richard Branson’s Virgin Airlines.

“I’m honoured to have served such a wonderful university, one that I am sure will continue to grow and become one of the country’s top universities.” John, aged 65, is now planning to enjoy spending more time with his family, but will still occasionally represent the University and will travel to China and South America.

He later returned to the University of Worcester, heading up the University’s recruitment drive in China.

international@worc.ac.uk / WINTER 2010 / 9


University of Worcester International Newsletter Winter 2010