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futuresâ?ľ The magazine for Alumni and friends of the university of hertfordshire

celebrating our diamond jubilee

1952-2012

summer 2012


Turn your potential into performance With a recognised qualification from The University of Hertfordshire Business School that • Develops skills • Leads to a professional qualification • Improves career prospects • Builds on experience

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For more information contact: 01707 285552 cpdu@herts.ac.uk go.herts.ac.uk/professionaldevelopment

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The Institute of Sales & Marketing Management

Plug intoyour your Plug into true potential true potential


summer 2012 issue 10

Contents

20

16 04 Welcome Details about our new website 05 News Find out what’s been happening this year 08 Reunions Past reunions and dates for your diary! 10 Yearbook See what your fellow alumni have been up to post-Graduation 15 Profile Alumna Sally Boor’s account of her amazing year 16 Research A new research project in India

futures❵

17 Kew Gardens The alumni working with orchids in Kews

Editor: Louise Barnes Art Editor: Dani Corbett Editorial Assistant: Stilyana Stoyanova

20 Olympic special Alumni and students who will be busy this summer… 24 Careers and Placements Top tips for networking success

Special thanks to: Siobhan Madaras, Adam Beck, Yulia Brodskaya, Stilyana Stoyanova, Steve Corbett, Jo-Anne Rowney, Emma Champion, Frances Elliot, Julie Moore, Phil Seaton, Tim Marks, Caroline Lawrence, Darren Crook, Liz Nolan, Sally Boor, Kim Virgo, Ed Flannigan, Howard Berry, Bob Redman, Paul Welsh, Alice Flawith, Andrew May, Caroline Betts, Ian Grimes, Julie Grace, Jo Wearne, Sue Anderson, Hannah Broady, Nicki Combarro, Louise Jukes, Matthew Calverley, Jane Housham, Rikke Duus, Andrew Francis, Jean Monteiro, David Priestly, Del Singh, Janice Hart, Sarah Lloyd and all those following us on Twitter! Contact us: Development and Alumni Office, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9AB Telephone: +44 (0)1707 281145 Switchboard: +44 (0)1707 284000 Email: alumni@herts.ac.uk Website: https://alumni.herts.ac.uk

26 Art Yulia Brodskaya’s fantastic creations 29 Diamond Jubilee special A snapshot of the last 60 years and a look forward at the next 20 on campus 34 The Elstree Project Preserving the region’s film heritage 36 UH Press The art of flexible thinking 38 Get involved Interested in working with students? Find out more!

futures❵ regular contributors…

Siobhan Madaras Journalism Graduate

Jo-Anne Rowney Journalism Graduate

Jane Housham Manager, UH Press

Alice Flawith Careers and Placements Officer

Emma Champion Mass Communications Graduate

03


futures❵

welcome We’d love to hear your feedback on Futures or anything to do with your time here… Please email us at: alumni@herts.ac.uk, or write to: Development and Alumni Office, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9AB

As one door closes, another one opens… In ancient Roman mythology, Janus was the god of beginnings - his name is familiar as the Romans dedicated the first month of year, January, to him. A two-faced god who looked simultaneously to the past and the future, he was the patron of doorways, endings and time. It certainly feels as though Janus has had a hand in events during 2012 – not only is this a landmark year for the University but for Higher Education as a whole, and so this offers the perfect chance to both reflect on the past but also look forward to the future 2012 sees us celebrate sixty years since the Institution was founded. Education has changed a lot in that time and this year will be no exception, with the introduction of higher tuition fees in England from September. Fashions have changed too - and the original Hatfield Technical College buildings, which many of you will remember fondly from your time here, look a world away from the new developments planned on campus, which are due to be completed in 2020. This edition of Futures will give you a sneak peak of some of those planned changes and a look back at the past 60 years, as well as letting you know about the fantastic stories from your fellow alumni – whether they’re taking part in London 2012, saving lives in Afghanistan, working on orchid conservation or creating beautiful images. Change can be scary, but their stories are testament to the fact that it can also be exhilarating and life-changing. The real danger seems to be only looking back and not seeing the opportunities that the future presents.

Louise Barnes Editor

It’s nearly time… for our alumni website to be revealed! The wait is nearly over, and when our new, shiny website goes live you’ll hopefully enjoy the up-to-date information on news and events taking place around the University. There will also be an updated benefits page for you to take advantage of, as well as information about all of our international chapters around the world. Enjoy! It will still be a work in progress though, so if you do have any comments/ thoughts/ suggestions/ compliments, please do send them over to alumni@herts.ac.uk. We will also be conducting an alumni telethon in the coming months – we have a range of new initiatives that we’d like to talk to you about from mentoring to events to fundraising, plus it’s also great to find out what you’ve been up to since graduating. One of our current students will ring you for a chat and hopefully you’ll find it interesting, informative and it won’t be during your dinner. You will receive a letter before we call, so that you can let us know in advance if you don’t want to speak to us. Hopefully we’ll be able to speak to many of you to find out what you’d like to hear more (or less) about. We’re also still growing our social media channels, so don’t forget to visit us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter!

04

Photography: Istockphoto

Updates from the alumni team


futures❵ summer 2012

futures❵ NEWS

A snapshot of news bites from around your University this summer...

Hertfordshire joins the Santander Universities Network

In December 2011 the University of Hertfordshire became part of the Santander Universities Network, which will generously fund a series of activities at the University over the next three years. Santander will be providing financial support for the University’s well-renowned entrepreneurial activities, such as funding for incubator spaces for start-up businesses, achievement awards for top students, and a contribution to support the Racing Formula Student Car and its associated engineering projects. Professor Quintin McKellar said “We are delighted to be working with such an acclaimed organisation. This donation will enable the University to present a minimum of twenty travel bursaries of £1,000.” Furthermore, Santander has pledged to assist the University in finding work placements and exchange programs for students identified under the Study and Research Abroad awards, in countries where Santander Universities is present.

New Year’s Honours

The University is proud to announce that the University’s Chair of the Board of Governors, Jo Connell, and senior lecturer Dr Avice Hall have been awarded an OBE and MBE respectively in the Queen’s New Year Honours list. Jo Connell DL, ProChancellor, has been honoured for her services to older people through her work as a trustee of Help the Aged. Recognition was also presented to Dr Avice Hall, a lecturer at the University, who was awarded an MBE for her services to higher education and to the community of St Albans. Dr Hall has been a lecturer and a researcher at the University of Hertfordshire for over 40 years; she has dedicated her career to the needs of her students and young people in her local community and also established an international reputation for her work as a plant pathologist.

The Carl Hanson Award 2011 Professor Emeritus Michael Cox has received the Carl Hanson Award, which is awarded every three years to an eminent scientist in the field of solvent extraction and jointly sponsored by the UK Society of Chemical Industry and the German Society for Chemical Engineering. In recognition of his outstanding achievements over his long career at the University, Professor Cox was granted the title of Professor Emeritus and, in 2008, he was awarded a Fellowship of the University. 05

>>


Success at Careers and Alumni Conference 2012

In February 2012 the ConferenceHertfordshire team was pleased to welcome a BBC film crew from the legal drama, Silk. The BBC filmed in the Law School offices and the Court itself, which was used as a backdrop for one of the episodes in the most recent series of the legal drama, which was televised in March.

The Faculty of Humanities, Law and Education held their annual Careers and Alumni Conference in January, which over 400 students attended. A broad range of talks meant that students received advice about working in a range of sectors including heritage, media, education, law and the police. The programme included a talk on ‘Becoming an Author’ by Katharine McMahon, a Fellow of the University and author of seven novels, including the bestselling ‘The Rose of Sebastopol’. Student feedback was very positive, particularly around the relevance of alumni involvement; graduates from University of Hertfordshire were able to provide a unique insight into areas including setting up your own business, working in media and becoming a legal executive.

Blogging for success Muhamad Hafiz Bin Ismail, who graduated in 2009 with a BEd (Hons) in Primary Mathematics, was recently awarded top honors for his blog, “Life through My Eyes” (www.apistakkisah.blogspot.com) at the 2011 MSC Malaysia Asia Pacific ICT Alliance (APICTA) Awards. As well as being the first social entrepreneur to win the coveted Prime Minister ‘Best of the Best’ award, he was also named as the e-learning category winner. Hafiz’s blog is designed as a tool for teachers and educators and has also been turned into a successful book entitled ‘Life through my eyes: A teacher’s little steps towards perfection’ published by UCSIPH and MPH.

The beacon is back!

The renovated pre-WW2 beacon has now been placed on the hill at the entrance to the de Havilland campus. It is one of the few remaining beacons used as a navigational tool by aircraft prior to radar and it originally sat on top of one of the buildings on the de Havilland aircraft site, helping guide aircraft back to the runway. The repair and re-sitting of the beacon has been carried out as part of the de Havilland Reminiscence Project with the help of Professor Owen Davies, who won a Heritage Lottery Fund grant back in 2009. The de Havilland beacon is currently refurbished and lit and there are plans to have a celebratory illumination during the Queen’s Jubilee, when other beacons are lit on hill-tops across the country. This is an exceptional addition to the de Havilland campus and adds a connection to the industrial past of Hatfield. So the next time you visit the campus, come and have a look! 06

This year the Alumni Association sponsored a prize at the Herts Open Exhibition. The winner was alumna Aran Illingworth for her piece ‘I’m a Big Girl Now’.


futures❵ summer 2012 Celebrating heritage

The University has recently launched its Heritage Hub, linking staff from a range of departments to support and encourage historical awareness in community, public policy and commercial settings. In June 2011, the Hub held its first community event: Remembering the First World War. Sixty members of Hertfordshire’s historical and literary societies, plus independent researchers, representatives from local museums

and 6th-form students, joined staff and students from across the University to discuss ways of marking the centenary of the First World War. Participants returned in January 2012 for a followup series of workshops (including a talk from alumna Marion Gold M.A. on women in World War 1), with a third event planned for June 2012. Building on this success, the Heritage Hub has launched Partners in History:

collaborations in regional heritage. Over this year, a series of open days and workshops will offer local groups an opportunity to develop collaborative history and heritage projects and include advice on how to apply for funding. Alumni who are interested in history and heritage are very welcome to join Hub events. For more information please contact Dr Julie Moore (j.p.2.moore@ herts.ac.uk)

futures❵ SPORTS NEWS Tackling business When watching a rugby match, it’s not immediately clear how a module in Project Management can benefit a scrum or tackle. However, it’s the learning and development that players receive from the Business School that Performance Manager David Priestley believes is having a real impact on the team. As part of a pioneering partnership, Saracens currently has 10 players studying a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications at the Business School, as well as making the most of the other University facilities available. This is all part of a wider programme within the squad, where 82% of the players are currently involved in either education or work experience. Whilst this has an obvious benefit for when the players retire from rugby, Priestley believes that learning is important to the players’ performance now. “Studying helps the players to become well-rounded and the skills that they learn have an impact both on and off the field. It is interesting how taking on a degree or work experience doesn’t just support long-term employability but also helps with teamwork, current performance and their development as individuals, which in turn supports their growth as sportsmen.” Owen Farrell, one of the players currently studying, echoes Priestley feelings about the positive benefits of the relationship with the University: “I have really enjoyed studying with the University of Hertfordshire so far. It is often a challenge balancing sporting commitments with university, but the lecturers and staff have been fantastic. I enjoy the campus, lectures and the facilities, and know my team mates feel the same way.” As well as teaching, Business School lecturers also act as mentors to the squad, to help them consider their future career paths. Rikke Duus, Senior Lecturer in Marketing and the partnership’s lead mentor, sees the value in the collaboration for all involved: “The flexibility of the Business School’s courses means that the players can take on as much as they can manage with their other commitments. We can really see the positive benefits that this partnership offers through the way it aids individual performance and future development.” Both the Business School and Saracens hope that this partnership will continue to grow. With Saracens’ impressive climb up the league tables mirroring the development of their relationship with the University, it’s clear that something is working.

Sporting Headlines for 2012 l The University’s Women’s Football Team have reached their first BUCS (British Universities & Colleges Sport) cup final after defeating Northumbria in the semi-finals. They will play at the Cup Final on Wednesday 2nd May against Loughborough or Leeds Met. l Students Hannah Gallagher, Owen Farrell and Brad Barritt all represented England during this year’s rugby Six Nations tournaments. l The annual Varsity event against the University of Bedfordshire took place on Wednesday 28 March. After 13 fixtures being played, we were crowned this year’s winner. l Hertfordshire Hurricanes make BUAFL finals l National Superleague Netball Champions Hertfordshire Mavericks embarked on their 2012 campaign to retain their title l Hatfield Swim Club and Sports Village athlete Adam Brown secures his place for the 2012 Games as he qualifies for team GB in the 4x100m relay l Sports Village athletes Gobi Ranganathan and Ella Beaumont selected as torchbearers in the Olympic torch relay.

07


futures❵ reunions

Past Reunions Applied Biology, 1986 Graduating with our BSc (Hons) in Applied Biology from Hatfield Polytechnic in 1986 as a group of fresh faced twentysomethings, we promised one another we would keep in touch. As with all good intentions our promises and relationships faded and although a 10 year reunion in 1996 reunited 28 of us, retaining links and contacts became harder to do. However, in 2010 Fiona Tyndall and Rachel Wilson from the Applied Biology class (known as SAB) started to discuss the idea of another SABers reunion, as 2011 would be 25 years since our graduation, and roped in Mark Johnson and I. We agreed a date of Saturday 9th July and contacted the 38 students we had tracked down via social networks. Even with two people in the US and another in Australia, we managed 29 confirmations including 4 lecturers who had taught us during our time at Hatfield. On the day of the reunion we assembled in the Ele House and tried to recognise one another and catch up.  After drinks we were given a guided tour by one of our former lecturers, Professor Rob Slater, which took in the C.P. Snow Building and also newer facilities such as the library.   Clearly a good deal had changed over the last 25 years and it is fair to say we were all impressed by how Hatfield had gone from being a small polytechnic to a world class university. Our tour of the campus concluded with a group photo on the steps of the main entrance, the same place of our group photo taken 25 years earlier. We gathered at the Mercure Hotel for our reunion dinner and an impromptu slideshow comprising photos taken during our time as students; some might have been embarrassing but they showed how happy we were at Hatfield Polytechnic. Post meal there were the obligatory speeches from myself, Mark Johnson and Dr Peter Stanbury and the evening was rounded off with a 1980’s quiz and disco. Staying up ‘til 5am reminiscing and recounting our Hatfield tales was probably my favourite part of the reunion, getting up four hours later for breakfast probably less so. But as we headed off we all agreed that it had been a brilliant event and there was no way we should wait a further 10 or 25 years for the next one - so here’s to the SABers ‘86 30 Year Reunion in 2016. Del. Singh

Malaysian Alumni Association In July 2011 Professor Quintin McKellar made his first official visit to Malaysia as Vice-Chancellor where he officiated at the Inti International University graduation. Prior to the graduation, Professor McKellar hosted a dinner for senior alumni at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel on 22nd July and attended the wedding of Adam Shaharel and Nor Azwa Ahmad Murad, both LLB alumni. Coincidentally, both parents of the bride and groom are alumni of the University as well. The dinner was attended by 25 alumni, ranging from recent graduates to those who left in the 1960s and 1970s. Those present included Dato’ (Dr) Ir Hj Abu Hashim Ghani Abd Ghani, Dato’ (Dr) Ir Andy Seo, Dato’ Noor Amiruddin Nordin, Dato’ Abdul Hamid Abdullah, Ir Khalid Ahmad, Puan Shamsiah Ramly Jalani, Puan Seri Datin Saaudah Zainual Abidin, David and Noraini Jones, as well as members of the UHAAM (University of Hertfordshire Alumni Association Malaysia) committee. One of the highlights of the reunion was the presentation of a cheque worth over £6,000 for the UHAAM Scholarship Fund by Ahmad Ziyad, the UHAAM President and Dato’ (Dr) Ir Andy Seo, Chair of the UHAAM Malaysian Scholarship Fund. The Malaysian Alumni Association was one of the first international chapters to be set up and continues to go from strength to strength. A further reunion event was held in November 2011, attended by 60 alumni and members of staff from the University. 08


futures❵ reunions

Save the date! As 2012 is the University’s Diamond Jubilee year, there’s going to be a lot taking place! Keep an eye on the website and e-futures for details, but below is a selection of some of the most exciting events coming up over the next few months. If you’d like more information about any of these, please email alumni@herts.ac.uk.

MAY

jun

22 25

20

aug

BA Tourism reunion An opportunity to network and catch up with fellow tourism graduates, this dinner will be held in London and will cost £20 per ticket.

1- 6 June School of Creative Arts End of Year Exhibition Hub event – Remembering the First World War 9 Heritage This event will include a taster session on applying for funding from the Heritage Lottery fund and a 15

jul

Professorial Lecture with Professor Jane Hardy (Business School) – ‘From Solidarnosc to Solidarity: recent Polish Migration to the UK

‘sandpit’ session around skills and projects that focus on oral history, archives and digital history. For more information please email uh.heritage@herts.ac.uk. BA International Business reunion An opportunity to network and catch up with fellow IB graduates, this dinner will be held in London and will cost £20 per ticket. Student project showcase and launch of the 2012 Formula Student Car

2

40 Years+ Crop Protection and Conservation Biology Conference This conference will be delivered by Dr Avice Hall and will be followed by refreshments and informal networking.

8

Diamond Jubilee community event and the Olympic Flame This event will look at the history of the University and is for the local community. It is also the day when the Olympic Flame is scheduled to pass through Hatfield.

23

Hatfield Technical College 50th reunion – 1962 MPS4 cohort When discussing life in the 1960s at the College one event that came to mind was the Christmas Revue that was organised, called “Yule be Happy”. Ahead of the reunion, alumnus Peter Comben wondered if anyone had a copy of the programme that they would be willing to send in. If you have, or if you graduated from the course in 1962 and are interested in attending the reunion, please email alumni@herts.ac.uk.

sep TBC

Diamond Jubilee Graduation and Reunion A reunion event on campus for all those who graduated before the University achieved its university status in 1992; all Hatfield Technical College/ Hatfield College of Technology and Hatfield Polytechnic alumni will be invited to become an Associate of the University of Hertfordshire.

oct various

11

nov TBC

1 dec

10

Bayfordbury open evenings (until March 2013)

The Vice-Chancellor’s annual public lecture Open History evening Join us an evening of activities, debate, music and drama on a historical theme. The date is still to be confirmed, but for more information please email uh.heritage@herts.ac.uk. Diamond Jubilee Lecture with Colin Blakemore, Professor of Neuroscience, University of Oxford

Diamond Jubilee Lecture with The Marquess of Salisbury, Chancellor, University of Hertfordshire

09


your NEWS Find out what your fellow students have been up to since graduation...

David Kitchen BA(Hons) Business Studies, 1973 After a career in financial services, mainly with Zurich and LV, I retired in July 2011.

1980s

Martin Wheatman BSc(Hons) Computer Science, 1986 On 6th July 2011 I received my PhD in Computer Science from the University of Reading, so now I’m (finally!) a Dr. Ian Day BSc(Hons) Psychology, 1987 I am an executive coach and leadership consultant with Personal Best International. Studying psychology at Hatfield was one of the best three years of my life and I have very happy memories. As well as meeting great friends, I found a subject that has kept my interest ever since. After graduating I worked in human resources in various organisations and eventually moved into talent management and leadership development. In this new role I was coached for nine months, which was fundamental for me. I became more effective, confident and satisfied. I was so inspired that I went on to become a qualified executive coach and now specialise in coaching and leadership development working to build the capability of senior executives and their teams within FTSE 250 companies and I still use psychological models in the work that I do. I have written several coaching articles and my second co-authored book “The Coaching Challenge” will be published in 2012. If you’d like to contact me, my email is ianday@personal-best.com June Noble BA(Hons) English and Literary Studies, 1989 Having successfully published my first novel The Lime Walk in December 2010, which was awarded five out of five stars on Amazon.com, I have now had its sequel published. Set twenty years after the first Challiss novel, Challiss of Uppham returns to the troubled Uppham estate in the early years of Queen Victoria’s reign. Within weeks of publication it had already received several five star reviews from around the world and is available via Amazon.co.uk, troubadour.co.uk as well 10

1990s

Marian Gold MA Literature in Crisis, 1990 I graduated in 1990 with an M.A. in Literature in Crisis. My thesis was accepted for publication. Subsequently published in 1992, and I have recently republished it as a book “Wartime is Your Time”. It has sold reasonably well, and I have given several power point presentations. As World War One is now on the school curriculum, I am still hoping to reach a broader audience. Married for 56 years, I now have 8 grandchildren. I attend a creative writing class and have written two novels and several short stories. I have also sold several paintings over the last few years. I had a wonderful ten years at your University, and found all the teaching to be of the very highest standard. We were very mature students, and were given wonderful support. I also helped to run the Educational Guidance for Adults service when it was first set up. Natasha Hoxha (nee McDermot) LLB(Hons), 1995 After I qualified as a solicitor 13 years ago I spent 7 years managing a team of lawyers at a top criminal law firm. In 2006 I set up my own practice in Mayfair, called Carters Solicitors. I was President of the West London Law Society and edited various books and publications. I am married with four children. John Gunner BSc(Hons) Combined Studies Law with European Studies, 1995, PgDip Legal Practice, 1997 and LLM, 1999 As part of my role in community charity Mediation Hertfordshire, I was recently involved in the production of a three-part documentary “Mediators”, which was shown on Sky 1 during the summer of 2011 and filmed in the new Law Court building at the University. The results we saw during the programme were riveting. It revealed real people in real situations we can all relate to – how what often seems like simple things can cause lives to become a misery for years, come to blows or end up in Court. Since being involved in “Mediators”, I have continued to grow my practice as one of the top-ranked independent Mediators in the

Photography: Istockphoto

1970s

as all major and independent booksellers. Writing under the name J.A. Noble, both books are published by Troubador Publishing Ltd.


country. My accreditations include civil and commercial matters, workplace, community, and, since going back to university (Brussels) in September 2011, I can now include international disputes. I have twice won industry awards for telephone Mediation and am involved in the formation of a new professional body for UK Mediators who have been working with the Court Service and Ministry of Justice. A key event for me is that I was invited to deliver an intensive 3-day training course to the Law School in December to prepare them for their new 2012 teaching syllabus including the latest dispute resolution techniques. This used the Mediation Centre in the new UH Court Building and is hoped will be the start of more really exciting developments. Nigel Barton BSc(Hons) Aerospace Engineering, 1996 I am currently an Airbus ICT Infrastructure Architect, working on transnational IT solutions for A350. Jeremy McLoughlin MBA, 1997 I’m a project manager at Rolls-Royce for the Next Generation Nuclear Propulsion Programme, which is designing and building a new reactor to power the successor class submarine for the UK. Neo Combarro LLB(Hons), 1997 and LLM, 1999 When I eventually left the University of Hertfordshire in 2000, following undergraduate and post graduate studies in law and a year as a student union sabbatical, I was fortunate to join KPMG (the accountants) and began formative training in the graduate programme within the Forensic Accountancy practice. The position exposed me to a number of high profile money laundering and fraud investigations, as well as a number of litigations where KPMG provided expert witness accounts. I eventually left KPMG to join the London insurance market specializing in liability and crime risks for financial institutions and representing a number of high profile International Financial Institutions, principally Wall Street banks. Since 2009 I have worked for Lockton Partners LLP, the largest privately held insurance brokers and risk consultancy firm, where as an Executive Director, I am responsible for Financial Institutions liability risk as well as heading the M&A and Contingency Risks team. I still live in Hertfordshire with my wife Nicola Combarro and our proudest achievement Olivia (5) and Rafael (3.5).

2000s

Julia Damassa PgCert Small Business Management, 2002 In 2010, 8 years after graduating with Distinction in Small Business Management, I slayed a dragon

and am now officially a “successful BBC Dragons’ Den entrepreneur”. 8 years earlier I had found myself on the most amazing Post Graduate course and in the company of wonderfully inspirational women entrepreneurs, bizmums and mumpreneurs (long before such terms existed). Costudents and tutors may remember me as the pregnant one who set up the Costumed Character Company. In the 9 years between now and then, I discovered that business was the common ground for my skills and experience as a parent, teacher and actress, enabling me to be both ethical inventor and social innovator. With and for my young family, I developed an awardswinning communication concept: the story making and sharing activity called Storyshaping and, in 2008, established StoryShapes Limited as the UK company that makes and sells the tools of Storyshaping and delivers training in the skills of Storyshaping. The course taught me many important ways to create a sustainable business, not least the value of the business plan, but it is the learning by listening that I remember and treasure. www.storyshapes.com Richard Stathers BSc(Hons) Computer Science, 2003 After graduating I worked for Filtronic, a telecoms company and then in 2003 I joined CSC; a multinational IT outsourcer and systems integrator, on their graduate management scheme. I had the opportunity to work within the engineering departments, project management and service delivery. During my eight years at CSC I have worked with the NHS account as part of a programme to modernise their patient care records system and I have spent eighteen months in Norway working with NBIM to transform their IT infrastructure. My current role is European Service Executive for CSC’s client Estee Lauder. Maggie Pyrah Counselling Certificate 2005, Postgraduate Counselling, 2007 I now work two days per week as a counsellor with Bedfordshire PCT. Three days as a Team Leader for a new Health and Wellbeing Team for Horizon Health Choices Ltd in Bedford. Nomah Dziruni BSc(Hons) Business and Computing, 2007 I graduated as a mature student in 2007 with a degree in Business and Computing. It was challenging as I studied the whole of my first year expecting my now 7 year old child. Being a very ambitious mumprenuer, I decided at 28 years of age to start my own online business: www.lilyhippo. 11


com. Instead of spending hours sending CVs and filling in job applications, I spent hours learning how to develop and market a website. I went on to design my own website and started selling Japanese Dolls. I have since redeveloped the website with a wider range of products; the shop is growing and has more product ranges including pure wool throws, leather vintage messenger bags to name a few. I have been studying for a professional CIM Diploma in Digital Marketing to further enhance my skills in this field and I now also contract Digital Marketing services to small businesses and help them with things such as online audits and developing online marketing plans. It has been quite challenging but I have supportive husband and a lovely daughter. The University of Hertfordshire has also supported me through the provision of affordable business space, and providing a generous discount to the CIM Diploma in Digital Marketing as I am an alumna. The skills and experience that I have gained from running my own business far exceeds the challenges. Adam Beck BA(Hons) Business Management, 2007 Since graduation I have completed a MSc in Tourism and Hospitality at the University of Bournemouth and worked in a variety of luxury hotels around the UK. I am currently a Restaurant and Bar Manager at The Grove, Hertfordshire. Recently I was awarded the Savoy Gastronomes’ Olive Barnett Award Runner-up, which is the most prestigious award for Front of House employees under the age of 30 in the UK hospitality industry. I also work part time as a Hotel Mystery Guest and have been selected as an Event Services Team Leader at the London 2012 Olympics. I also have a Tourism and Hospitality blog, which can be viewed at: htihospitality.wordpress.com. David Randall BSc(Hons) Computing, 2008 I have recently received a Fulbright Postgraduate Award which will enable me to study at the University of Washington towards a PhD in Information Science. I am very excited about this opportunity to participate in one of the most prestigious and selective scholarship programmes operating world-wide. At the University of Washington I will be researching virtual teams and online communities, studying how groups are formed on the internet and how they perform complex, distributed tasks. My research will focus on how the successes of amateur community projects (such as wikipedia) can be effectively translated into similar 12

projects within business. To be named a Fulbright Scholar is an incredible honour and I am immensely thankful to be given such an opportunity as this. Studying abroad is a unique chance to absorb a new culture and expound the distinctiveness of your own upon your hosts. I plan to spend my time in the US expanding both my academic and cultural understanding, seeing and experiencing as much of America as I can, and hopefully doing my part to strengthen the unique relationship Britain shares with the United States. If you would like to find out more about the programme or my plans in the US, please do not hesitate to get in touch at david.p.randall@ gmail.com. Natalie Mitrides BA(Hons) Digital Lens Media, 2010 After graduating from Hertfordshire University with a degree in Digital and Lens Media, I have successfully, with hard work , passed my internship and am now the photographer for ‘The London Daily News’ and head of newsdesk. Google me and see my work or visit: www. thelondondailynews.com Duygu Poroy MSc Business Psychology, 2010 I got back to Turkey in 2010 with a postgraduate diploma on business psychology after two great years of UK experience. My undergraduate degree was on business administration but I wanted to improve my knowledge and skills on interpersonal relations in the work environment. Even though I studied my undergraduate degree in an English-taught programme in Turkey, 2 years abroad experience has really improved my English language knowledge. Being fully equipped in many ways, I’ve applied to many jobs related to my subject. Among many jobs I’ve applied, I found audit sector the most interesting and appealing, therefore I’ve started to work as an assistant auditor in a UK-based company’s Izmir office. Even though I am really happy with the life I have now back in my city, I miss my good old days in Hatfield, therefore I am planning a trip next year to the UK to visit my friends and professors. But I will be more than happy to help prospective students in my city, Izmir, when I have the time and chance. Thank you for my great education which was the key to the door to get me the job I have right now. Aref Abujamouse (MSc International Business, 2010 After graduating from the MSc International Business program with a distinction award I have successfully joined Yahoo! Middle East and I am currently working as a Business Development Analyst. Without such a course from such a University, it would have been impossible. Thanks to UH.


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Futures submission – your news

We would love to hear your news – whether you’ve got a new job, got married, had a baby, moved to a new country, published a book or are just doing something interesting! Please fill in the box below and either email or post it to us at the addresses below. Once we’ve received your submission it will be put into the ‘your news’ section, so that your fellow alums can find out what you’ve been up to since leaving Hertfordshire.

Get involved!

We’d love to help you get involved with the University of Hertfordshire – if you are interested in any of the below, let us know and we can send you more information on.... Receiving a free Alumni Association membership card Supporting students through talks, workshops or seminars Acting as a mentor to a student or recent graduate Providing placement or work experience opportunities Donating to the University of Hertfordshire Acting as an international alumni ambassador Recruiting students and attending careers fairs

Please return your news form to alumni@herts.ac.uk or post it to: Futures magazine, Development and Alumni Office, University of Hertfordshire, FREEPOST BBT 141, College Lane, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9BR. Please note that only UK residents can use the FREEPOST address. Information on the University’s database is held under the provision of the Data Protection Act. It will be held exclusively for promoting closer links between the University and its graduates.

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The Biggest Event of the Year Main Arena, Urban Stage, Piazza Stage and Little Vegas.

Friday 25th May 2012 8pm until 4am

Main Stage Headliner to be announced Urban Headline Act: More acts to be announced in the coming weeks. Be the first to find out at

facebook.co.uk/forumhertfordshire and twitter @theforumherts Lucha Britannia Wrestling, Photographer, Casino, Food Stalls, Street Performers and Show Girls, Plus Free Fun Fair.

www.look-at-our-balls.com Strictly 18+ (R.O.A.R) for entry, students require university ID card and non-students require a valid passport or driving licence


futures❵ profile

Sally (pictured on the far right), a rescue helicopter

Sally’s war After graduation, Sally Boor (Paramedic Science, 2007) took a rather different path to many of her fellow graduates. This is her honest and frank account of her experiences over the past year.

I

was called up by the RAF reserves to do a three month tour on the Medical Emergency Response Team (MERT) in Helmand Province, Afghanistan during the busy summer period, with temperatures nudging 500°c. First, I undertook three months of pre-deployment training whereby I learnt basic soldiering skills and attended a variety of courses such as battlefield advanced trauma life support (BATLS) and evading capture. In mid-May, I flew out to Bastian via Dubai. As we descended in darkness wearing body armour and helmets, the pilot cut out the internal lights and I started to realise what I was getting myself into! I was taken to my tent at about 2am and tried to get my head down after my 24 hour journey. However, three hours after falling asleep I was woken by the ground shaking followed by a loud explosion, and that was followed up with rapid gunfire. I scrambled underneath my bed and tried to get my armour and helmet on, the air raid siren began to wail and I didn’t know what to do other than duck! The MERT does 24 hours on, 24 off. Our busy time was dusk and dawn because this was the predominant time for patrol movement and most of our missions were in the green zone. We did very little at night other than the occasional transfer from a forward operating base to Bastian. The helicopter we used is the size of a bus and it has two pilots, two loadies (loadmasters), four Force Protection RAF Regiment soldiers, a doctor, two paramedics and a nurse. The bread and butter of the job, unfortunately, are double amputees, which we saw daily.

The nature of the job varied according to the capability of the enemy at any given time so it was very dynamic. The job was also very tactical, however, as you face a number of threats from things such as surface to air missiles, small arms fire, booby trapped landing sites, IEDs (improvised explosive devices) and suicide bombers posing as patients. We tried to stay one step ahead with drills such as evasive flying but it was difficult to predict what was coming next... I saw many acts of heroism there from the soldiers in the battlefield. One IED took out a whole patrol of seven, leaving them all severely wounded. They were all deafened from the blast and one was blinded too, but despite being deaf and blind he still took a corner of the stretcher to carry his friend to safety. On the whole, I have a positive outlook on this experience although obviously I did have tough days and I was anxious most of the time! You don’t want to be running through a field to hear on the radio “someone get that sniper!” But one thing I have learnt is that no matter what happens or where you are the people around will look after you and get you through it and you’ll do the same for them. Anything is achievable... Now I’m back to reality working as an NHS paramedic. But never one to conform or sit still I am currently undertaking a trial in the City of Cambridge. I have spent the last few months manning an ambulance bicycle or Cycle Response Unit (CRU) tearing through the streets of Cambridge to attend 999 emergencies. The nature of the work is, of course, a little different to what I was doing last summer but this doesn’t bother me as all I try and do is strive to do what all good doctors, nurses and paramedics do...to make that difference... f❵ 15


futures❵ research

Water, water, everywhere, and not a drop to drink…

The demand on water supply is becoming an increasing issue – not only for the UK, with the expected summer hose-pipe bans, but around the world. Emma Champion looks at one research project focusing on developing and maintaining sustainable water technologies in India.

I

f not for the innovative thinking of those extraordinary individuals prepared to push the envelope of lateral thinking and take our way of life to entirely new realms, so much valuable knowledge would be lost in a fog of procrastination and complacency. It is largely thanks to research academics and scholars that tremendous theories and wonderful ideas are thoroughly explored and tested to expand our understanding of the world and improve people’s lives. Dr Darren Crook is one such academic. A senior lecturer in the Division of Geography and Environmental Sciences at the University of Hertfordshire, Dr Crook has, in conjunction with Dr Richard Jones of the University of Exeter, been awarded the coveted Leverhulme Trust Research Grant (RPG-392) – a major achievement. Beginning in March 2012, this grant will fund an exciting project based in two Indian regions, looking at technology to support what is fast becoming the world’s most limited and valuable resource: water. In the face of huge environmental challenges, such as rising population, resource depletion and climate change, the Indian states of Karnataka and Kerala

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have found that scarce water resources have reached a critical level. Within these states, a traditional water control technology called Suranga has, in the past, appeared to be sustainable. This system uses a horizontal tunnel that is dug into the slope of a hill and uses gravity to extract and collect underground water. Now this system is rapidly being abandoned in favour of modern well systems. Dr Crook’s project is unique in that it aims to critically compare the two competing technologies - one traditional (Suranga) and one contemporary (borewells) - in order to offer more sustainable futures for local farmers. Since little is known about the Suranga, any existing knowledge needs to be documented for future generations before it is lost and can never again be adapted for use. In addition to this, the research site will be put forward as a regional example of the Indian subtropical environment in the recently launched FOCUS 4 regional integration initiative supported by the IGBP and Past Global Changes (PAGES). This means that the lessons learnt from this project may be applied elsewhere in the tropics and have even wider benefits and applications. Dr Crook summarised the importance of this research on individuals and the wider region, saying: “Knowledge transfer from this study will empower local farmers and water officials to make more informed decisions about promoting sustainable water management practices in this region, reducing vulnerability to periodic water shortage.” His team on the project will include research assistant, Sudhir Tripathi, a former University of Hertfordshire student; it was his experiences studying Surangas during his Environmental Management MSc that actually provided the inspiration for the project. Without research projects like this one, places like Karnataka and Kerala would suffer demonstrably as water supplies slowly dwindled with devastating affect. The work of Dr Crook and the countless other remarkable researchers at the University of Hertfordshire is not only a reason to celebrate in terms of academic achievement, but also has potential for the betterment of people’s lives all over the world. f❵


futures❵ kew gardens

(Clockwise from top left) Cattleya quadricolor, Cyrtochillum macranthum, Flagship Guatemala Guarianthe skinneri, Cypripedium calcicolum

From small seeds... Sometimes life takes you in directions you would never have expected. Phil Seaton (BSc Applied Biology, 1970) and Tim Marks (BSc Applied Biology, 1978) describe their journeys from Hatfield Polytechnic to their joint work on an orchid conservation project at Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank (MSB) in West Sussex.

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t was only after several years working together that Phil and Tim realised that they were both graduates of Hatfield Polytechnic. Although their study dates didn’t overlap, some lecturers and local haunts were remembered, and this started them thinking about the different paths they had taken to find themselves working on the same orchid seed storage project decades later. Phil’s story is one of chance and good fortune. In common with many youngsters, he didn’t have a clue what he wanted to do after school and came from a family with no academic background. He arrived at Hatfield in September 1966, two weeks after the term had started, having been persuaded at the last minute by his biology teacher to apply for clearing. Tim started the course on time in 1974, his decision to study biology jointly dictated by an interest in Marine Biology and watching Jacques Cousteau films. For both, one of the attractions of the course was its practical bias and industrial placements. Phil experienced an enjoyable year in diabetes research at Burroughs Wellcome, where his 17

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futures❵ kew gardens employers were impressed by the laboratory skills he had acquired at Hatfield. Tim had two six month placements; the first involved cutting up mice at an institute outside Cambridge, which put him off animal research for life, while the second, studying plant pathology at the East Malling Research Station, suggested an alternative career direction. Phil graduated in 1970 in need of a job, but still not knowing what he wanted to do. Eventually he decided to try teaching and took a Diploma in Education at the University of Sheffield. The interviewer suggested that, with his practical background, he might consider teaching in Further Education. It seemed a good idea. Several interviews later, Phil accepted the job of his dreams, teaching Biology and Human Biology almost entirely to A-level and mature students on part-time and evening courses at Kidderminster College in Worcestershire. He enjoyed it so much that, aside from an interview at Wakehurst Place, Phil stayed in the same job for 32 years. Much to their amusement, Phil and Tim later found that they had both been interviewed for the same job at Wakehurst Place in 1982. Tim finished in June 1978 with a 2:1 and the prospect of a PhD at East Malling. Thus began a long association with plant tissue culture. He returned to Hatfield briefly in 1983 to start a post-doc studying immobilised plant cells. However, a ‘permanent’ job soon beckoned back at East Malling, working on ornamental trees and shrubs; the group he joined were working on propagation science, including cloning techniques and environmental control, and making sense of these to the horticultural industry. It was a buoyant time with funding from a variety of sources. Tim’s research developed tissue culture as a propagation tool, but also as a means of understanding whole plant physiology, with topics ranging from micropropagating rhododendrons to gene hunting in Forsythia. Whilst Tim was pursuing a career in plant tissue culture, Phil had been introduced to growing orchids by one of his work colleagues who grew cymbidiums in his greenhouse. Phil was immediately hooked and soon had a small collection of his own. He was persuaded to apply to Wolverhampton Poly to take a part-time MPhil by research. Much to his surprise and delight they were happy to let him research whatever interested him. This turned out to be orchid seed storage and changes in the flask atmosphere as the seeds germinated and grew under aseptic conditions. He was awarded his MPhil in 1985, and presented with it by Norman Lindop, who had been principal of Hatfield when Phil and Tim were there. Phil presented his findings on orchid seed storage at his first scientific conference, on a cold and frosty morning at Kew in 1986, where he first met Hugh Pritchard, the successful candidate for that job at Wakehurst back in 1982! Thus began a series of collaborations between the soon-to-become friends on orchid seed storage, culminating in what turned out at 18

Flagship Thailand Rhynchostylis gigantea


futures❵ kew gardens the time to be the largest overseas grant awarded by the American Orchid Society. Science is all about effective communication, and actually meeting and discussing your work is vital to any progress. Contacts and networks are so important to establish, as combining complimentary skills and resources are essential to effective research and especially to fund-raising. Tim did his fair share of this between 1984 and 2004, meeting many people around the world and visiting places as far apart as St Louis in Missouri and Auckland in New Zealand, and lots of Europe in between. This can be formalised in lab work and conferences, but Tim well remembers sitting in a bar in Amsterdam at 2am still talking about....well, something to do with science. Phil’s orchid travels began quite late on in life, attending his first international orchid workshop in Holland in 1987. The Dutch organiser was fluent in Dutch, German, French, English and a little Spanish. Phil was ashamed. As he was determined to visit Latin America, he began Spanish evening classes soon after his return to the UK. Phil was becoming increasingly interested in orchid conservation, and when a wellknown orchid researcher wrote that it was no use Chloraea magellanica cueva del Milodon

Students watching meristem techniques at Quito Botanical Garden

waiting for someone to fund your foreign travels, if you were truly committed you would fund yourself, Phil decided he couldn’t delay visiting the tropics any longer. He visited Costa Rica for the first time in 1995. In 2000 he was awarded a nine week travel grant to study the ex situ conservation of orchids in Cuba, Mexico, Costa Rica and Ecuador by the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. Funding research is always an issue. In 2004 this ran out for Tim, and he was made redundant. Following a diversion into secondary science teaching, which was an educational experience for all concerned, he joined the Research section of the Seed Conservation Department at Wakehurst Place in 2006. This was his first experience of orchids, the sheer numbers involved, and the amazing people associated with them. Tim and Phil first met in a pub close to RBG Kew to discuss a project with Hugh Pritchard. The project took off in 2007 with money from Defra’s Darwin Initiative under the banner of ‘Orchid Seed Stores for Sustainable Use’ (www.osssu.org). Tim’s role in this has been lab based working on aspects of seed viability, germination and storage protocols with undergraduate and masters students. He also has a PhD student based in Jordan doing more field-based work, and is collaborating with others in the OSSSU project worldwide. Phil has been writing popular and scientific articles about a wide range of orchid issues and has become well-known in the global orchid community. His good communication skills and extensive contacts have been invaluable for his role as OSSSU project co-ordinator and he has travelled extensively in Latin America and Asia co-ordinating workshops and speaking about the project. It is also true that he would not have been able to carry out his orchid work for OSSSU without being passably fluent in Spanish. Tim also has other roles at Kew. Another research project focuses on palms; thus working with both the smallest and largest seeds on the planet. He also oversees the undergraduate recruitment programme in the MSB. So from benefiting from the Hatfield sandwich course all those years ago, he is now helping other undergraduates take their first steps on a research career. What does the future hold for Tim and Phil? Anyone who remembers Phil from Hatfield will know that he loved art. Those were the days of general studies, and he has fond memories of taking life drawing classes as a nervous teenager at St Albans College of Art. Of course he is now approaching retirement age. He will continue working with his friends at Wakehurst as an Honorary Research Associate, but also intends to spend time painting and writing and illustrating orchid books. Tim continues to balance working in the lab, supervising students, writing papers and proposals, training people, emailing (imagine life without it!). He has no plans to be bored in the immediate future. f❵ 19


futures❵ olympics

London 2012

That’s all you need to say to elicit either excitement or a groan. Whether the Olympics are your thing or not, it’s the event of the summer that everyone’s talking about. The University is no different – here’s a snapshot of some of the ways we are involved, from alumni both in and supporting Team GB, to the student 2016 hopeful and the alumnus who’s looking at the Olympics from a slightly different perspective…

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imagine for any sportsperson that there can be no greater honour than representing your country, a feat that 21 year-old student Matt Calverley can proudly claim. Having discovered the world of wheelchair basketball at the age of 10, Matt has spent the last 11 years mastering his craft playing for the London team Capital City and representing Great Britain in the Under 23’s team. “Hand on heart, the best feeling I’ve ever had is sitting there lined up and singing the national anthem, you just can’t explain it. You see people on TV do it but when you actually get that chance, it’s amazing.” Yet, despite his natural talent and engulfing passion for the sport, Matt will be off the court and cheering from the side-lines during London 2012, choosing instead to focus his attentions on the final year of his History degree. “Training is essentially a full-time job and university is all about what you put in. I know the majority of the GB team and how much they are dedicated to this and I will be rooting for them all the way.” The celebrated athlete has a string of awards to his name, including the national recognition of being named the ‘GB Juniors Players’ Player’ in 2010. With the end of his degree in sight, Matt talks of his hopes for the next Olympic and Paralympic games in Rio de Janeiro: “I definitely aspire to be part of 2016; once university is out of the way I will be focussing on that and really dedicating myself to doing it.” Of the preparation it will take to get there he says: “Not only do you have to be physically fit but you have to constantly think about what you’re putting into your body and your sleep pattern. There’s also the mental preparation because although there are a lot of highs, there can also be a lot of lows; you get rejected, you don’t always do very well and you don’t always play well. It can break you and you have to be willing to make sacrifices.” As we talk candidly, it is plain to see that from a very early stage basketball quickly surpassed the realms of a hobby and opened up a new world to Matt. “The biggest thing for me was that I was with other people with disabilities who didn’t care and just got on with their lives. Before, all I saw were the things that I couldn’t do rather than the things that I could do. Being with others that led normal lives was a big wake up call for me. I realised that there was nothing wrong with me.” Probed about his thoughts on the games as a whole, Matt’s resounding hope is that London 2012 will raise the profile of Paralympic athletes and inspire others with disabilities: “I hope the Paralympics eventually becomes something you talk about for the athletes and what they do, not what they are. It would be great to see London 2012 inspire more people with wheelchairs or a disability to go into sport; if they see more role models, then it may just make them think ‘If he can do it, perhaps I can do that!’” Siobhan Madaras 20


futures❵ olympics

F

our years ago Louise Jukes gave up her job and home to follow her dream: to represent her country at the 2012 Olympics. Her gamble paid off when she entered the talent identification scheme in 2007 and was chosen by Sir Steve Redgrave to play in the Great Britain women’s Handball team. “It was hard to give up my job, friends and family but I’d always wanted this life as a professional athlete,” said Louise. The scouts were looking for accomplished sportswomen, particularly with Great Britain minus a Handball team for the Olympics. “They were looking for talented and tall women to play in minority sports, but I was spotted for my sporting history - I’d played for hockey England U18s – not my height as I’m a mere 169cms,” Louise explains. In 2008 Louise moved to Denmark to be part of the World Class Handball Programme and train as an athlete full time with her head coach at a handball academy. “We got straight into training, twice a day. The way you eat, the way you think and working on speed, technique – everything you can think of.” After a year Louise moved to Norway to play for a club side for two seasons, narrowly missing out on promotion to the first division. Now based in Crystal Palace, Louise has racked up 35 caps for Team GB. “First we started playing against the lesser nations, now we’re playing some of the best, even the Olympic champions, and beating them, so it’s a good test of our ability.” Louise would never have predicted her Olympic hopes would come true five years ago, when she studied physiotherapy at the University of Hertfordshire and lived in Hitchin, saying, “It’s pretty scary how fast it’s all happening, but it’s really exciting.” Now she can’t wait for the first game, the day after the opening ceremony. She said: “We’ve got to use our home advantage, and having the home crowd will make a massive difference. It’ll be good to show our families what we’ve been doing and showcase the sport.” Last year Louise was a finalist for Suffolk’s Sport Personality of the Year for the work she does to encourage participation in the sport and its development. “With the Olympics coming to London it’s given handball a chance. Now we can spring board into schools, maybe have a professional league. That is what I would like. “The Olympics is a great platform, I could play for a team abroad. I’m also interested in marketing and sponsorship – maybe a new career! But first I’m looking forward to my time off.” With the opportunities ahead of Louise it sounds like 2012, and the years ahead, will be anything but quiet. Jo-Anne Rowney

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siobhan madaras

Supporting success London 2012 has long been the phrase on everybody’s lips. As momentum builds, the nation eagerly turns its attention to the talented athletes flying the flag for Great Britain. But what of the people behind the scenes, each playing their part in the biggest sporting event of the year? Siobhan Madaras speaks to one of these people, physiotherapist Nicki Combarro.

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lumna Nicki has over 14 years experience in her field. Since graduating in 1996, she has travelled the world treating a whole range of athletes and is certainly no stranger to large scale sporting events having been involved in three Commonwealth Games and various World University Games. But mention London 2012 and her face lights up: “It’s going to be great!” Nicki is one of 400 physiotherapists volunteering their services in the Olympic and Paralympic Games. From June she will be based at Loughborough University, setting up the holding camp where Team GB (all British athletes) will go to be kitted out: “We’ll also be there as a support to any physios coming through with their squads. If any squads should come through without physios we’ll provide a service for them as well.” Once the games are underway, Nicki, the owner of BodyBalance – a Hatfield based physiotherapy business – will head back to the capital to continue her duties: “At the moment one of the events I’m looking after is cycling at the Velodrome. We might not see a huge amount of the action but we’ll be there within the arena. After that I’ll be based in the Medical Centre in the Athletes’ Village where any nation and any sport can access us. You literally could get anything coming through the door…but that’s part of the fun!” With London 2012 set to impact the country in a big way, Nicki is a true ambassador for the Games: “I don’t see how it can’t be positive. I appreciate that if sport isn’t really your bag then it might come across as the government throwing good money away but just the regeneration of the London boroughs alone has been absolutely outstanding. We’ve also got issues with participation and child obesity in this country so even if it just spurs a few people to get in a pool and have a go at swimming or to play recreational badminton in the facilities that are left behind, that can only be a good thing.” Asked what the best part of her job is, Nicki simply says: “Seeing an athlete with a medal around their neck and knowing that you played a part in their success, even if it was a tiny, tiny part, is really quite rewarding.” 22

The 2012 Olympics and Paralympics aren’t just about sport. Here’s a snapshot of what alumni, staff, students and the local University community are getting up to and how they’re supporting the Games… l A member of staff has been selected to take part in the Opening

Ceremony on 27th July. We’re not allowed to say who it is, but keep an eye out for any familiar faces when you’re watching it! l Research students from the Health and Human Sciences Research Institute (HHSRI) have been selected by GlaxoSmithKline and trained by King’s College London to assist with the preparation of samples in the anti-doping laboratory. It is expected that tests will be carried out on over 6,000 urine and blood samples – more than any previous Games l Students from the tourism, hospitality and events programme will be volunteering, including one student who will be involved in security l The University will be hosting a range of teams including competitors from the British Virgin Islands, St Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis l 2012 Olympic hopeful Adam Brown is a member of the Hatfield Swimming Club and trains in the pool in the Sports Village l Dr Linda Wilks, senior lecturer in Events Management, will be part of the Events Services team for the Paralympics at the Olympic Park – she will be on duty throughout the Paralympics, helping to make the visitors’ experiences of the event enjoyable


Going for

Gold

adam beck

Preparing hospitality businesses for London 2012 The Final Countdown….

Creating Positive Experiences

The London 2012 Olympic Games are just over 100 days away and final preparations are taking place to host ‘the greatest show on earth’. Approximately four million visitors from across the globe are expected to descend on the capital during the Games. There is no doubt that this is a much needed boost to the UK economy, and more importantly, a chance to shine and leave a legacy for the future. Hospitality businesses have an incredibly important role to play during the games as they will act as the ‘host’ to the multitude of guests. It is not only the record breakers that will be remembered by the visitors, it will also be the hospitality received in airports, hotels and restaurants. There are a number of areas that hospitality businesses should consider in preparation for the Olympics.

Many people will visit the games for a ‘once-in-alifetime’ experience. It is important that this experience is managed by hospitality businesses. Experiences can be broken down into a three stages: l The pre-experience which involves marketing activities, initial communication with potential customers, website design and interactions such as a reservation call. The pre-experience provides an opportunity for businesses to manage the expectations of potential customers and set the scene. l The live-experience which is when the customer is actually on site. This allows businesses to deliver the experience to a customer. l The post-experience which is after the customer has left. This allows businesses to carry out further marketing, offer promotions, gather feedback and create a sense of loyalty to ensure that the customer returns. All three areas should be considered carefully and aligned to one common goal – unique and memorable experiences.

Spreading the Word Marketing will be important for Hospitality businesses who wish to thrive from the games. Promotions, advertising and even dedicating a page on your website are all options. Is the touch relay passing through your town? Is the marathon passing your property? What venues and events are in your area? How can your business play a part in the build up to the games? These are just a few questions which should be considered in a marketing campaign.

Image: istockphoto.com

Building Robust Relationships

People are Key It is a known fact that the people employed on the front line and in direct contact with the customer are vital for hospitality businesses. In preparation for the games, businesses should consider a detailed labour plan. This should include: if any additional skills needed for your business during the games, where your labour

The success of hospitality businesses often relies on building robust and sustainable relationships. This will be as important, and if not more important, during the Olympic Games. Businesses should consider building relationships that will enhance the service offered to customers and ultimately build an experience to remember. Potential options for building relationships include: l Pooling your resources to allow for increased efficiency and higher margins l Joint marketing activities to share costs and increase awareness through multiple outlets (e.g. advertising on each others websites) l Building experiences through cooperation such as hotel and meal or attraction packages. This creates a sense of value for money and improves the overall experience for your customers. 23


ALICE FLAWITH

The

Benefits

of Networking

Networking. What exactly is it all about? Often it conjures up images of having a forced conversation over a glass of wine – but surely it goes beyond this? Alice Flemish from the Careers and Placements Service looks at the name of making new contacts. linking up with new people. Get involved with a club, be it sports, a society or volunteering. The sharing of an activity away from a work environment establishes connections over a common interest, allowing interaction to take place away from an environment anchored in job titles. Exploring your interests in this way will also enable life-long skills to be developed that will make a great impression all round. The opportunity to expand contacts has progressed beyond only face-to-face communications with the growth of virtual communities. With the existence of social sites such as LinkedIn coming to the fore, a Jobvite Recruiting Survey for 2010 stated that 92% of those hiring were already recruiting or planned to execute their recruitment via social networks. An online profile enables the user to tailor their achievements and interests, depending on the image they want to project and the relationships they want to make. It is fundamentally a form of resource sharing – the opportunity to exchange information and gain industry insight. There are websites that offer great advice on how to design your online profile, which will help in where to begin with creating one. Joining professional bodies is another way of linking up to a community and expanding your network. Websites such as ‘All Jobs UK’ give a summary of professional associations which have societies, social

‘‘

A network is the sharing of

connections and knowledge which

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yields results from both parties

’’

Image: istockphoto.com

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2011 YouGov Survey found that personal contacts are the most effective way to secure employment, with 62% recommending a job to those they know and 57% of those who applied through a contact continuing on to secure the job successfully. But the key to networking is that it isn’t an instant process and its power goes far beyond only being a ‘tool’ for gaining access to employment. The frequently discussed ‘hidden job market’ implies that using networking to secure a role is a one dimensional process, an interaction that will, in one step, take you to securing a job; in reality, it is far more complex and more fruitful than that. Instead, networking is an opportunity to talk with others about similar interests and to build mutually beneficial relationships, for the long and short term. In the world of the Careers and Placements Service at the University, a network is the sharing of connections and knowledge which yields results from both parties. Steven D’Souza (author of Brilliant Networking and a visiting speaker here) believes that it is using the connections you have in a more intelligent way, offering support that has the potential to help you in your path of career exploration. This is playing the long game, taking time to think about your current base of contacts and ways in which this could be expanded to the mutual benefit of both individuals involved. Identify your current network and consider ways in which you could develop your primary contacts further. Whether this is from within the workplace or outside, there will always be possibilities for


futures❵ careers and placements

events and opportunities for continuing development courses. With membership often comes an online portal, enabling you to connect with others more easily. Whether pursuing graduate employment or a change in job, attending careers and recruitment fairs can also be a good way to build links and learn about companies in a face-to-face environment. These unmediated experiences of networking can seem daunting, particularly given that there always seems to be such pressure attached to first impressions, which can be more easily managed and altered on virtual profiles. But if you think of these interactions on an individual level as based on common interests, it would perhaps feel less nerve-wracking. Networking is fundamentally centred upon meeting new people. The explosion of virtual communities in recent years has resulted in an expansion of the channels in which we can make these connections. Increasingly, we can tailor our communications free of the barriers that used to restrict making links with others. The possibilities that this opens up makes networking an exciting prospect to be utilised to its full potential. You never know where it could take you unless you give it a go. f❵

Top tips from the University’s Careers Advisors 1 Make a plan: think about your interests and goals. 2 Identify your current network, including primary ‘warm’ and secondary contacts. How could you expand this group? 3 Get involved with volunteering, sports or join a professional body. 4 Create a professional profile on a networking site. 5 Be enthusiastic about yourself! Remember that this is a relationship which will be beneficial for the other party too. Useful resources l Careers blogs, hints and tips: http://careers.guardian.co.uk/ l Professional bodies and associations http://www.alljobsuk.com/Unis/PubBodies.shtml l Local volunteering and fundraising activities: http://www.do-it.org.uk/ l Useful resources including a free guide to exploring your career online: http://www.mygraduatecareer.com/ l Careers and recruitment fair information: http://www.prospects.ac.uk/ and http://www.newlifenetwork.co.uk/ l Learn how to create an online profile: http://learn.linkedin.com/what-is-linkedin/

AD unisecure

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futuresâ?ľ art

The pictures worth a thousand words Artist Yulia Brodskaya (BA (Hons) Graphic Design and Illustration 2005 and PgCert Design 2006) has been able to bring together all of the things that she loves most in her work: typography, paper and highly detailed hand-made craft objects. She has always had an interest in experimenting with different creative methods, ranging from textile painting, origami and collage to more traditional fine art practices. This passion for diversity shines through in her work which tends to focus on quilling, the art of rolling, shaping and gluing strips of paper to create an image. This niche skill has earned her an international reputation and she has created detailed paper designs for a range of international clients, including Cadbury, Starbucks, Nokia and Hermes, as well as having her work printed in various newspapers and magazines around the world. Having moved to the UK in 2004 from her native Russia, Yulia is now based in Hertfordshire. http://www.artyulia.com fâ?ľ 26


futuresâ?ľ art

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Our postgraduate restructure puts you at the forefront! We’ve recently restructured our postgraduate offering, putting you at the heart of what we do. We now offer 5 exciting programmes in:

Art and Design Media Film & Television Music Art Therapy Through shared modules and experiences you will have the opportunity to locate a real sense of student community and ‘connectedness’, providing you with the opportunity to take advantage of the challenges of the 21st Century. For more information visit: go.herts.ac.uk/CAPG Email: m.stjames@herts.ac.uk

School of Creative Arts


Diamond Jubilee Special

The Age of Education As the University celebrates 60 years since it opened, we give you a snapshot of the Institution through the ages plus a look at what the future holds.

Hatfield Technical College/ Hatfield College of Technology – 1952 Buildings

It all began in 1944 when Alan Butler donated 90 acres of land at Roe Green to the council, to be used for educational purposes. The College had six initial departments: Building, Technical and Design Engineering, Works and Production Engineering, Science, Commerce and Retail Trades, Social and Professional Studies. In 1965 Fairshot Hall, Sandridge became the first Hall of Residence and in 1967 Bayfordbury became the College’s first additional site for teaching.

People

Dr W.A.J. Chapman was appointed as the first principle of Hatfield Technical College in 1949 and he welcomed the first students enrolling in 1952; he was succeeded by Norman Lindop in 1966.

Awards

In 1958, the College was re-designated as Hatfield College of Technology. 1960 was an important year in the College’s direction, with the introduction of four year sandwich courses towards BSc degrees in Aeronautical and Electrical Engineering under the auspices of the National Council for Technological Awards (NCTA) allowing the College to award degrees.

Did you know…?

l In 1956 four students from the Motor

Club drove a Ransome Matador motormower non-stop from Edinburgh to London and in 1961, six students raced from Lands End to John O’Groats on a 197cc, two-stroke engine go-kart. l In 1962 the College purchased its first computer: a National Elliot 803 digital computer costing £29,201.

(Clockwise from top right) Ariel view of Hatfield College of Technology, Students in the library, A Mechanical Engineering workshop, Secretarial students, The Ransome Matador motor-mower that was driven from Edinburgh to London

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Hatfield Polytechnic – 1969 Buildings

In 1969 Birklands Mansion was acquired as an additional site and the following year an observatory was built at Bayfordbury. A huge amount of work was done on the accommodation provision: in 1970 two news Halls of Residence were opened, Butler Hall and Fern Hall, increasing to Chapman Hall in 1971, and in 1974 Sidney Broad Hall and John Coales Hall. In 1978 the Ball’s Park site was acquired, which housed Business Studies and Social Science teaching. The Management Centre also moved here in 1980, after the closure of Birklands. The Sports Hall opened on the Hatfield site in 1984, the same year that Bayfordbury Mansion was handed back to the County Council; the Observatory continued to be maintained by the Polytechnic. Finally in 1989, private developers began work on three buildings between the newly opened A1(M) and College Lane. They were leased by the Polytechnic and named the Todd, Lindop and Mercer Buildings in honour of the Polytechnic’s former Visitor, Director and Chair of Governors.

People (Clockwise from top left) Bayfordbury students on the lawn, The Motorcycle club’s sponsored push in 1989, Ball’s Park Mansion, A double room in the Hatfield Halls, An Engineering student

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The Director of the Polytechnic in 1982 was Dr. John Illston, PhD, DSc (Eng), CEng, FICE. He was succeeded by Professor Neil Buxton in 1987, an economic historian and former Scottish hockey international.

Did you know…?

l In 1974 was an event that changed many students’ lives: The Font bar

opened. In 1976 the Students’ Union Oracle Bar was renamed the Vale Bar, in honour of bar steward Vic Vale, who died during the year. It wasn’t until 1977 that ‘The Elephant House’ opened, named due to its unusual design.


Diamond Jubilee Special The University of Hertfordshire – 1992 Buildings

In 1993 the merger with the St Albans-based Hertfordshire College of Art and Design (founded in 1889) was finalised. In 1994 the new School of Art and Design moved into the former British Aerospace Design block in Hatfield and in 1998 a two-storey regional art gallery opened, as part of the purposebuilt Faculty of Art and Design. College Lane also saw the opening of the Film, Music and Media building in 2006 and the new entertainments venue, The Forum, in 2009. Significant change came in 2000, when work began on the new de Havilland campus on the site formerly occupied by British Aerospace. It opened in 2003 for students studying Education, Humanities and Business Studies, subsequently leading to the closure of the Wall Hall, Aldenham, and Ball’s Park sites. The latest work on the de Havilland site was the move of the School of Law to the new Law Court building in 2011, and the closure of the St Albans campus.

People

Sir Brian Corby was appointed as the University’s first Chancellor in 1992, followed by Sir Ian MacLaurin in 1996. In 2005 Lord MacLaurin was succeeded by Lord Sailsbury, the current Chancellor. In 2003, Professor Neil Buxton retired and Professor Tim Wilson was appointed Vice-Chancellor of the University in his place; he retired in 2011 and received a knighthood in the Queen’s New Year Honours List. In his place, Professor Quintin McKellar was appointed Vice-Chancellor.

Awards

The Graduation ceremonies moved to the Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Alban in 1994, and in 1996 the first University of Hertfordshire Graduation ceremony was held in Kuala Lumpur.

Did you know…?

l In 1992 the University became the first institution to run its own bus

service, named Universitybus, which would become UnoBus in 2005. l In 1998 the University

competed in the first Formula Student Event in the UK, winning the Best Presented Team prize. l StudyNet – the student intranet – was introduced in 2001. l In 1994, the University was named ‘Top New University’ in The Times Good University Guide, and in 2008 received its first nomination for the Times Higher Education ‘University of the Year’ Award. In 2010 it was named as the Times Higher Education Supplement’s ‘Entrepreneurial University of the Year’.

(From the top) The art and design block, The Forum, An on-campus bedroom, Inside the Law Court building

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Estate of the nation Many of you will have fond memories of the times that you spent on our campuses, in particular the buildings where you lived and studied. Like moving house, the new developments planned for the University might invoke conflicting emotions– sadness at leaving behind memories but excitement at what the future has to offer.

T

he American President John F. Kennedy once said “time and the world do not stand still. Change is the law of life”. It is in this spirit that the University has announced its 2020 Estates Vision – a plan of equal importance to the original 1952 development when Hatfield Technical College was conceived. The focus of this plan will be on the original College Lane campus, given the condition and age of many of the buildings. These alterations will not only affect its look, but also how the campus operates and is experienced by students, staff and visitors. Only a handful of developments will be made to the De Havilland site, which will celebrate its 10th birthday in 2013. Some might question the timing of the start of the development, in the year before the tuition fees are increased. However Andrew May, Director of Estates, Hospitality and Contract Services, believes that the increase in fees is the perfect reason to ensure that the

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campus reflects the high standards expected from a 21st century university. “Doing nothing is not an option; the 2020 Estates Vision sets out how we intend to modernise our estate and support our staff and student experience, sustainability and community agendas. The increase in tuition fees will make the higher education sector even more competitive. The University must continue to invest if it is to attract the best students and staff and the vision prepares the University for this new environment in higher education.” The vision will affect many areas of the College Lane campus, and one of the most significant developments will be to the residential accommodation blocks; these will be completely rebuilt to ensure that there is a greater provision of mixed, high quality on-campus rooms. The major changes from a teaching perspective will be to the science, engineering and general teaching spaces, as well as the lecture rooms. The Estates team are clearly mindful of the potential


Diamond Jubilee Special impact upon current and future students, and so are ensuring that there is a phased delivery of all projects. Andrew is keen that the works do not negatively affect anyone’s experience on campus, saying: “We will do everything we can to keep disruption to an absolute minimum and will keep students and staff appraised of planned and future developments. Contractors with the kite mark ‘considerate contractor’ will be appointed to carry out the works and a great deal of emphasis will be placed on the academic activities that are carried out all year long”. The first phase will start over the summer and will see the development of an informal learning space on the De Havilland campus, with the creation of a new mezzanine floor outside the Weston Auditorium. The next phase will see the work begin in earnest on the College Lane site, with the creation of a learning and student zone next to the Forum. This zone will act as a central space for students and will house the key student facing activities in one area, including the student centre, housing, the careers and placements service, the medical centre and other student facing services.

There will also be a real focus on sustainability, something that the University has already stressed its commitment to. Andrew commented that “the entire vision points towards student and staff experience, sustainability and the environment, and the community. The University has set itself challenging targets to reduce its carbon footprint by 60% by 2020 and this plan forms an integral part of how we are planning to achieve this”. Whilst this vision will change the structure and face of the College Lane campus, it will help to ensure the longevity of the University. The redevelopments will also provide the opportunity to celebrate our history, with heritage and displays from the University’s art collection having more of a presence. This is an exciting new chapter in the history of the University and it is clear that this institution is one that doesn’t stand still, but instead seizes opportunities and changes to adapt. Here’s to the next 60 years. On-going updates on the 2020 Estates Vision and the developments on campus will be posted on our website and in our monthly e-newsletter, e-futures. f❵

(Opposite) Concept sketch by thelandscapepartnership (Below) College Lane masterplan

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futuresâ?ľ elstree

Star Wars, The Avengers, Indiana Jones, The Shining and The Saint. What do all these films and TV series have in common? Apart from being ever-popular favourites, all of them (and more) were made in the studios of Elstree and Borehamwood, Hertfordshire. 34


W

hile you may not be aware of this little known fact, a team of local volunteers and students have been working behind the scenes to capture the stories behind the films, quizzing the rigger to the make-up artist, lighting guys to script writers. This on-going oral history, The Elstree Project, is being created by the University’s Film and Television course, in collaboration with Elstree Screen Heritage. Over the last year, these veterans of Elstree’s films and TV shows have been interviewed about their careers and life in the film industry, led within the University by Howard Berry, the BA Film and Television Programme Leader. “You always hear about George Lucas and the stars, but there was a whole community of people in Elstree and Borehamwood, making the props or helping in other ways.” says Howard. “These jobs have now changed or are being replaced by digital film making. This project is about preserving memories of what was.” Howard describes the 40 hours of footage already collected as a “living archive”, suggesting it could be used for a documentary or a book, with some clips already having aired on BBC Three Counties Radio. “There are moments when your jaw drops,” says Howard. “We interviewed an assistant studio manager – John - who worked at Elstree when the studio faced closure. He told us that a man turned up one day saying he had to look at the dressing rooms. John recognised him as being a demolition man - he was coming to demolish sets 7, 8 and 9, now where Who Wants To Be A Millionaire is filmed. “John ran across the road to the Borough Council and got a restraining order, but his story has never been made public. It was part of history and goes to show that everyone had a role in Elstree’s story.” The Elstree Project’s website contains interviews dating back to 2010, from the Kubrick Visions festival. Interviews with people who worked for the famous director of A Clockwork Orange and 2001: A Space Odyssey have led to the project receiving recognition from ‘across the pond’, with Toy Story director, Lee Unkrich, following the filming. “He’s a huge fan of The Shining and we had interviews with people who had worked on it. He contacted us and asked if we had any more material.” Howard added: “We interviewed June, The Shining’s script supervisor. She was told by Kubrick to run through the lines with one of the actors. He refused and when it came to filming he didn’t know the lines. It’s the way she tells it that makes it great, she does a wonderfully funny accent!” Bob Redman, co-founder of the project, said Kubrick Visions showed what could be achieved. “Kubrick is associated with St Albans, but he lived in Elstree for years. He made the majority of his films here, so we started to find people who had worked for him to tell the full story - geniuses are sometimes hard to work for, and we pulled back the veil a bit. Then we thought: Stanley Kubrick, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg - they have books written about them, but no one tells what it was really like.” Bob believes The Elstree Project is a chance to “fill in the gaps”, providing students with invaluable lessons. “It’s not a history lesson. It’s real. The technology may have changed, but the same lessons are there,” he said. “When we finish filming the students leave their equipment to ask questions. We eventually have to drag the interviewee away!” He added: “It’s a race to preserve this heritage, because when it’s gone, it’s gone. At a time when everywhere looks the same, it’s important to keep the things that make a place like Elstree unique. “In a dark room with the bright lights, an hour can feel like five minutes as you sit absorbed in these stories. They need to be passed from one generation to the next – and we’ve got to share them.” This is a feeling that Paul Welsh, chairman of Elstree Screen Heritage, shares. “My father was in sound effects and I was born and brought up in Borehamwood,” he said. “When you’re young, you don’t think about why your father is taking stuff from the kitchen to make sound effects for the latest James Bond movie.” Paul has been involved with the studios for the past 35 years, writing a weekly column about them for the local newspaper, arranging anniversary celebrations, reunions and royal visits. “If anything, one of my biggest regrets is not asking my father about his time at Elstree. When he died he took his stories with him, but now we have the chance to capture these stories while these people are here. That’s what we’re doing. Saving the past while it’s still here.” For more information about the project, please visit the website: http://theelstreeproject.org/ f❵ Jo-Anne Rowney

Kelvin Pike, Camera Operator

Alf Newvel, Rigger

Johnny Goodman, Production Supervisor

Ron Punter, Scenic Artist

Neville Reid, Studio Manager (1996-2006)


jane housham

The future is flexible You’re a fairly normal sort of person. You know what you like. You get up in the morning and you’ve got your routines – they help you get the day started. You usually have coffee and toast, or maybe you’re a cereal person – but it isn’t that big a deal, just something to get you on your way. You’re out of the house by pretty much the same time every day: you’ve got to be or you’d be late. Lunch is usually a sandwich at your desk – you like to catch up with the news online. The afternoons pass quickly enough and before you know it you’re home again and there’s your favourite TV to look forward to – or perhaps it’s your regular night out?

D

oes that sound like you? Or if not exactly like you, then can you map your own routines onto that picture? Would you go so far as to say you love your routines? Do they make you feel comfortable (you know where you are with them)? In a very real sense, human beings need routines – if you had to process every single thought and decision as if you were coming to it for the first time, it would be exhausting, maddening. Not thinking so much is something the brain is hard-wired to do. But there’s a downside to living on ‘automatic pilot’ (and for some people routines can account for up to 90% of their daily lives): if you always respond to situations in ‘your’ way, you’ll miss out on more considered – and different – reactions that might bring you a better result. Sleepwalk through life 36

and you could miss out on a lot of potential to grow and change and experience new things. Changing ingrained habits is a challenge – we all take that for granted. Losing weight or giving up smoking are some of the toughest to crack and often we get locked into a pattern of repeated failure. Such failures are generally put down to a ‘lack of willpower’. In reality, it’s almost impossible to remain focused on good intentions day in, day out: your attention wanders, an old habit trigger will go off and, before you know it, you’re back in your rut again. Willpower doesn’t stand a chance: a much better way to achieve the changes you may long for is to become less reliant on habits. Let’s imagine a different sort of day. Perhaps you set your alarm clock to go off an hour earlier than usual so you don’t have to rush. Instead of coffee and toast, you have a bowl of fruit and yoghurt. You go to work by a different route – perhaps you get off the bus a

stop earlier than usual and walk the rest of the way, or you drive by the back roads instead of down the motorway. At lunchtime, you go outside and read a book in the sun. Later, rather than flopping on the sofa to watch your soap, perhaps you ring an old friend or try out a new recipe. The possibilities are endless, and perhaps they don’t seem very earth-shattering, but small shakeups like these will set you on your way to the mindset where you can make the big changes that will really make a difference. Not only that, you’ll almost certainly enjoy these modest changes. In their new book, Flex: Do Something Different, Ben Fletcher and Karen Pine set out the thinking behind their very successful behavioural flexibility programme. Ben and Karen are both senior members of staff in the School of Psychology here at the University


futures❵ uh press

‘‘

(and also married to each other), and their book is backed up by over thirty years of research. It looks at the idea of ‘personality’ and gives readers the chance to work out which personality traits are dominant in them. You can also test just how stuck in your ways you are. Armed with this knowledge, there are tailored ‘Do Something Different’ programmes to help you counteract your most ingrained traits. It’s about moving yourself to a different point on the personality spectrum so that you can try on a different set of behaviours for size – and then perhaps another, and another. In any given situation, a different way of dealing with it may not only lead to a more satisfying outcome but reduce stress as well (stress is often the consequence of rigid habits). Who could resist the advice to ‘tell a joke’ or ‘go commando’? Or perhaps the behaviour-changers aimed at you will include giving more hugs or learning a poem by heart. If just imagining doing any of those things makes you feel a little bit uncomfortable, that could be the very thing for you! People are resistant to change but often find that when they actually make a change, they feel surprisingly happy. As you shake up more and more habits, your new lack of routine will itself gradually become a way of life. But now you’ll be building up a much wider repertoire of responses to whatever life may throw at you. The greater goal of ‘flexing’ is personal coherence, where our actions are in keeping with the way we see ourselves. If we achieve coherence in this way, we’re generally much less stressed and more at ease with ourselves. Do Something Different is also being used successfully to change behaviour in communities and corporates (see www.dsd.me). The possibilities really are endless.

As you shake up more and more

habits, your new lack of routine will itself gradually become a way of life.

’’

Flex is published by University of Hertfordshire Press at £8.99. Ben and Karen’s other books include The No-Diet Diet, Sheconomics and Love Not Smoking. f❵ 37


futures❵ get involved

Open your

Heart to Herts!

Get involved…

Do you have fond memories of your time in Hatfield? Do you sometimes wish that there was an easy way to become part of your campus community again - and give something back to students following in your footsteps? If this sounds familiar, read on…

T

here are a variety of ways that you can get involved if you’re interested in giving something back to your alma mater and today’s students, which can easily fit your lifestyle and circumstances.

The media is awash at the moment with horror stories of talented, enthusiastic graduates who are unable to get a job and one of the key ways you can provide invaluable support is to help them get on to the career ladder. This could be through a number of ways, including: l Acting as a mentor in a flexible, adaptable alumni programme l Providing work experience or an internship opportunity at your company l Giving a talk or leading a workshop on how to get into a particular sector or field. If you’re keen to support students and graduates who are striking out on their own, we also have a range of ways that you could help these future entrepreneurs, such as: l Providing promising individuals (that you might see a spark of yourself in) with experiential advice or a mentorship to help them get their business started l Becoming a judge on our annual Flare competition If you don’t have much time but want to help in a more traditional sense, you can also give to the University to make an impact on both students in need of support and on key projects. If you can give £10 a month, that’s the equivalent of sacrificing four lattes. In a year, 48 coffees could equal a vital contribution towards: l Scholarships and recognition awards for students l Extra-curricular activities, helping student societies, sports clubs and community projects l Supporting priority areas of research, including the development of KASPAR; the robot helping children with autism to develop their communication skills. If you want to find out more, please tick the appropriate box on the alumni update form on page 11 and return it using the freepost address supplied (please note that the freepost address only applies if posted within the UK). Thank you for your interest and support! 38


spring summer 2012 highlights theatre

dance

film&tv

Macbeth

Chemistry

Visions Festival 2012

music

exhibitions

Telephone

16 May 7.30pm The Weston Auditorium

31 May 10.00am-5.00pm The Weston Auditorium

Anna Fox, American Pool Hall, 2010

25 May 7.30pm The Weston Auditorium

de Havilland Philharmonic James Bond 50th Anniversary Concert

RESORT - Anna Fox 30 March – 10 June Museum of St Albans

+44 (0)1707 281127

Monday to Friday 10.00am - 4.00pm

www.herts.ac.uk/ artsandgalleries

13 May 7.30pm The Weston Auditorium

www.facebook.com/unihertsarts

www.twitter.com/unihertsarts

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If undelivered, please return to Development and Alumni Office University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, AL10 9AB, England

t t a e i H e n i r Cathe

y k S e Blu

Winner of the Hertfordshire Open Exhibition 2011, Catherine Hieatt’s works addresses ‘time’ as a succession without distinction. Her installations, presenting moving image and audio recordings, depict what the artist calls ‘ambiences.’ These brief narratives unfold duration as a ‘haiku’ for the digital age. The Hertfordshire Open has marked itself out as the definitive annual showcase for local artistic talent and last year over one hundred artists from across Hertfordshire submitted work. The open submission exhibition was open to artists of any age living, working or studying in Hertfordshire, and all Alumni of the University of Hertfordshire. Image: Catherine Hieatt, Thunder, 2011

Dates: Venue: Opening hours:

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Friday 13 July until Sunday 2 September UH Galleries at the Museum of St Albans Monday – Saturday, 10.00am – 5.00pm Sunday, 2.00pm – 5.00pm

futures - Summer 2012  

The magazine for alumni and the friends of the University of Hertfordshire

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