Category Archives:People

Ben Cosh on guitar

Professor Ben Cosh’s Christmas single raises money for homeless charity

Professor Ben Coshhas written and performed aChristmas songChristmas is Coming,which has raised over £400 for Shelter, the housing and homelessness charity.

Ben is the Director of the Division of Computing, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences and has been at the University and in his role leading CEMS since September 2021.

He said: ‘I write, play and record music in my spare time and this was a fun project including online collaboration with some friends. The song is about Christmas having two meanings; on the one hand family, gifts and wintertime, and on the other a celebration of the birth of Jesus, which means a lot to some of us.’

Thesonggathered some attention in his local area and was featured in theHenley Standard. Ben said: ‘I’m a little embarrassed really. The initial reason for doing it was just to enjoy creating the song and make some music with friends. The money raised so far has been a splendid bonus. I certainly wasn’t expecting my local newspaper to pick up on it. However, I’m glad they did as it has helped raise further funds for a cause that is worthy all year round.’

Todonate to Shelter, click on Ben’sJust Giving link.

Farewell to Richard Bradford

From Trevor Pereira, Director of Commercial and Facilities Management

Richard Bradford, interim Director of Commercial Services, will be leaving the University at the end of his interim contract on 31 January 2022.

Richard has shepherded the Commercial function over a difficult year, and I would like to thank him for his hard work over this period.

We wish Richard all the best with his future endeavours.

Trevor Pereira | Director of Commercial and Facilities Management

Babatdor Dkhar

Babatdor Dkhar awarded Charles Wallace India Trust Fellowship

The Centres for Postcolonial Studies and Creative Writing have awarded the annualCharles Wallace India TrustWriting Fellowship to Babatdor Dkhar.

Since 1991, theCharles Wallace India Trusthas sponsored a Fellowship at the University that enables a writer from India to come and work in Kent for the spring term. Additionally, they have the opportunity to present their work to staff and students in talks organised by Kent’s renowned Centres for Creative Writing and Postcolonial Studies.

Babatdor是作家和导演Cre研究ative Writing at Oxford, has taught English in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, worked as an editor in New Delhi, and is the Founder of Ka Ktien Media and the Chief Editor of Half and One.

奖学金将使爸爸tdor to live and work in Canterbury whilst writing his novelThe Khasi Albumwhich is set in Shillong, a town in the north east of India, and is a work of satire, black comedy, romance and tragedy.

As Babatdor says in his application, the novel tackles “the differences between East and West, nationalism and communalism, small-town mindsets and tribal minority sensibilities in an India that is completely different from the one that is portrayed in mainstream literature and media”.

Dr Matthew Whittle, lecturer in Postcolonial Literature and Director of theCentre for Colonial and Postcolonial Studiessays: ‘On behalf of the Centres for Postcolonial Studies and Creative Writing, I’m delighted to welcome Babatdor as this year’s Writing Fellow, and looking forward to fostering a creative voice from an under-represented region in Indian literature such as Shillong.

‘The standard of applicants this year was incredibly high, but Babatdor’s writing really stood out to the judging panel as exceptional. We look forward to his contributions to the rich community of creative writers and postcolonial scholars at the University of Kent, and we’ll be following his writing career with great interest!’

Professor Clive Church PolIR

Condolences for Professor Clive Church

The University was very sorry to hear of the death of Clive H Church, Emeritus Professor of European Studies.

Clive joined Kent from the University of Lancaster in 1981 as Senior Lecturer in European Studies, affiliated with the then European Studies unit in the School of European Culture and Languages. He was promoted to a professorship in 1992 and became a member of the Department (now School) of Politics and International Relations in 1996. Upon his retirement in 2003, he was appointed Emeritus Professor.

A historian by background, Clive became a leading scholar of Swiss history and politics and of European integration. Among his numerous works areThe Politics and Government of Switzerland(Palgrave Macmillan, 2004),Understanding the European Constitution(Routledge, 2006 – with David Phinnemore),A Concise History of Switzerland(Cambridge University Press, 2013 – with Randolph Head), andPolitical Change in Switzerland(Routledge, 2016).

He was an active member of the Channel Tunnel Research Unit from 1986-1993, a co-founder of the Kent Centre for Europe (a Jean Monnet Centre), which was in operation from 2000-2010, and of the Centre for Swiss Politics, in operation from 2003-2016. He remained very much active past his retirement and was planning to write on external views of Swiss politics at the time of his death.

Outside academia, Clive was much involved in the local community. He was the founder of the Alliance of Canterbury Residents’ Associations, an organisation which is still important and active today. He was also a key member of the Campaign for Democracy in the Canterbury district, where his understanding of political issues and processes made a valuable contribution. As the same time he was active in Thanington, the part of Canterbury where he lived, writing a history of the area and contributing to the parish council.

He will be fondly remembered by all those who knew him.

We express our deepest condolences to his daughters, Hilary and Joanna, and partner, Clare, and their families.

Dr Paolo Dardanelli |Deputy Head ofSchool of Politics and IR

Picture shows: Clive with his granddaughter, Claudia

Keith Dimond

Condolences for Keith Dimond

The University was very sorry to hear of the death of Keith Dimond.

Former colleague, Mohamed Sobhy writes:

‘It is with sadness that I report that my friend and colleague Keith Dimond has passed away. Keith joined the University in 1971 as lecturer in the Electronics Laboratories (now the School of Engineering). Prior to joining, Keith worked at GCHQ in Cheltenham. I remember in his interview at Kent, Keith could not give the panel some details of his work, as it was classified. Nevertheless, the panel was so impressed by Keith’s personality and knowledge and had no hesitation in offering him the post.

‘Subsequently, Keith made a vital contribution to developing the teaching and research in the department, especially on the digital side and was promoted to a Senior Lectureship in recognition of his work. Keith also made a significant contribution to the administration of The Electronics Laboratories. For 10 years, during my term as director, Keith was deputy director and his help and support were vital to the smooth running of the department. I remember in particular, his help in preparing the application to the Institution of Electrical Engineers (now IET) for accrediting the new courses. Before his retirement, Keith became Master of Keynes College again using his personality and diplomacy to run the College smoothly and effectively.

‘Throughout my knowledge of Keith, I admired his manner of dealing with people in a diplomatic and kind manner that made him respected and loved by all his colleagues and students. Keith will be sadly missed by all who knew him.’

We express our condolences to his wife Judith, his two daughters Rachel and Fiona and their families.

New Director of Division for Arts and Humanities

Congratulations toProfessor Juliette Pattinsonon her appointment as our new Director of the Division for Arts and Humanities.

Juliette, who is a Professor in the School of History, is currently the Deputy Director (People) in the Division and an AdvanceHE Chair for Athena Swan. She replaces Professor Simon Kirchin who will stand down at the end of the year.

Juliette says: ‘I am delighted to have been appointed as the new Divisional Director. I look forward to working with colleagues in championing the arts and humanities and to joining the Executive Group. This provides an exciting opportunity to work collaboratively to shape the future of our University and the Division in the next phase of our development.’

Juliette joined the University in 2013. She was Head of our School of History from 2015-20 and, before that, at the University of Strathclyde (2012-13).

Juliette completed her undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at Lancaster University in History and Women’s Studies and her PhD was a gendered oral history analysis of male and female secret agents in Nazi-occupied France. She is a socio-cultural historian of gender and war and has published on civilian men, uniformed women, partisan warfare, incarceration, national identity, cultural memory and oral history methodology.

Her monograph on the fabulously named FANYs (the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry), which examines the world’s longest established female military organisation as a case study of gender modernity, was published last year. Following a symposium held in Special Collections at Kent, she is completing an edited collection on British humour and the Second World War, which has offered some light relief over the last 21 months.

Outside work, Juliette is a keen cyclist and runner, loves scuba diving and yoga and enjoyed flying a Cessna recently. She is somewhat less enthusiastic about an upcoming skydive – something she has felt compelled to do since 1999 when she interviewed secret agents who parachuted behind enemy lines.

Vice President role for Bob Green

Congratulations toRobert (Bob) Green OBE, Reader in Forensic Science and Director of Student Engagement for the School of Physical Sciences, on his election as Vice President of theChartered Society of Forensic Sciences (CSOFS). Robert is a Fellow of the society and has previously served as Honorary Secretary and Acting Treasurer.

他在之前的角色,发展起到了至关重要的作用loping the student block membership scheme, resulting in a substantial increase of students joining the professional body. He also sought to build membership and promote forensic science more widely through numerous visits to educational and other establishments.

The role of VP – a three-year term – focuses on setting and maintaining ethical and professional standards, and ensuring members maintain and uphold these standards. As a trustee of the professional body, Robert will chair the Membership and Ethics Committee, scrutinising and setting guidelines for membership applications, chairing the appeals committee and managing complaints and discipline issues.

Malcolm Dixon outside the Templeman Library

Malcolm Dixon wins inaugural young fiction writing award

Malcolm Dixon is Head of our Quality Assurance and Compliance Office but may soon be better known as an award-winning writer.

Malcolm’sfirst book,The Little House on Everywhere Street, was awarded the inauguralAcheven Book Prize for Young Adult Fiction. The prize includes a cash award and publication of the novel by Regal House Books in early 2022.

The Little House on Everywhere Streetcentres on a family who live in an unusual house, where they can step out into London, New York or Paris through different doors. Unknown to the three adventurous children at first, they can also travel in time – and so the adventures begin!

It may be Malcolm’s first published book but it’s not the first time he has seen his name in print. He has been writing for a number of years – since studying English at universities in Sunderland and Minnesota, US – and his short stories have featured in publications such asThe London MagazineandAesthetica.

Writing fiction alongside a full-time job has not been easy. Malcolm says: ‘I aim for around 1,500 words a week. I write mostly at weekends but then, in the week, I can often be found at lunchtime editing the novel on my phone in the Templeman Library – I missed it during lockdown!

‘When I came to write the first page ofThe Little House on Everywhere Street, I knew, with absolute certainty… this is exactly what I should be doing. Everything came together, the years of effort… I wanted the novel to be both well-written and as entertaining as I could make it. That the novel has been honoured by the award of this inaugural prize recognises that fact and means everything to me.’

How to get a copy

The Little House on Everywhere Streetby F.M.A. Dixon will be published on 4 February 2022, but is available now for pre-order from帝王家出版, as well asAmazon UK,Blackwell’sandWaterstones. Leading UK sci-fi writer and critic, Adam Roberts, has hailed the novel as ‘a scrumptious time-travel adventure written with elegance and charm,’ and Malcolm hopes that this praise indicates his book will be well-received – and with good reason.

Two follow-on books have also been written, although whether or not we get a chance to read them may depend on how well the first one performs. ‘I’m truly grateful to everybody who has pre-ordered a copy,’ says Malcolm. ‘They’re helping me achieve a lifelong ambition, one that I hope can continue long into the coming years.’

Unsung Hero Award winner – Becky Verlin

Winner of the Unsung Heroes Award is Becky Verlin, Housekeeping Manager for Kent Hospitality.

Becky was nominated for her pivotal role in setting up and running a Covid-19 testing site on campus for our staff and students.

On receiving her award, Becky said: ‘It’s a team effort – there were lots of other people involved, including Colin Smith (from HR), the space management team and others. I am happy to take the award but what I am really proud about is that the ATS team stayed right the way through – they’re the real heroes.’

Becky’s nomination

Becky’s nomination notes that during 2020, universities were asked by the Department for Education to set up asymptomatic testing centres on their campuses for students and staff. In the face of this ‘challenging ask’ and without a clear roadmap, the University was able to set up and run a full testing site service for our staff and students, which has continued into the 2021/22 academic year.

Becky’s nomination notes that she was instrumental in the setting up of the site, training and support of staff and ongoing delivery of the testing facility. She is praised for delivering ‘a great service with skill, professionalism and good humour’ and it is noted that ‘the University owes her a debt of gratitude for her leadership of this project’.

The award also reflects that, while working on the new testing centre, Becky continued with her ‘day job’ as well as advocating for others as a staff representative on our Joint Staff Negotiating and Consultation Committee (JSNCC).

Read more about Becky, including her ATS site role, in herKent People profilepublished earlier this year.

Great Team Award winners – Staff supporting students on campus during Covid

Winners of our Great Team award are staff who supported our students on campus during Covid. Team members include: Lucy Foley, Director of Student Services; Jacqui Double, Head of Colleges and Community Life (Student Services); Laura Maclean, Head of Accommodation and Customer Services; Louisa Harvey, Senior Events Coordinator; Caroline Hames, Event Services Coordinator; Rachel Walmesley, Events Coordinator; Jan Williams, Events Coordinator; Alison Polden, Events Coordinator; and Sarah Tooze, Reception Services Coordinator (all from Kent Hospitality). Their nomination notes that staff from Student Services and members of the Isolation Team worked outside of their normal working hours, regularly working evening and weekend shifts on a rota basis, to ensure that students received all the support that they needed throughout the pandemic. On receiving the award, team member Jacqui Double said: ‘It’s recognition that it takes a big team of people to come together to make things happen for students – particularly to keep changing things as regulations change. It also shows that flexibility and kindness, as emphasised by Karen (Cox) in her welcome this evening, has been shown by the whole team.’Award nomination奖提名概述了团队的支持or international students, including daily support and guidance on travel restrictions, as well as booking accommodation for quarantining students and co-ordinating the delivery of daily food packages in conjunction with the catering team. For students who needed to self-isolate, the team provided invaluable support, co-ordinating the delivery of care packs, giving vital information, support and advice. They also co-ordinated student helpers – or when unavailable went themselves – to help with deliveries to isolating students such as medication, toothpaste, food deliveries and more. The nomination notes: ‘This outstanding compassion and support for our students has made a huge difference to our isolating students.’ And students were also appreciative: “The self-isolation team was great with the care packages and checking in, I cannot fault them.” During the University Winter and Spring Bank Holiday closure, a high number of students on campus were unable to return home – and the Isolation Team stepped in again working every day (except Christmas Day) to ensure students remaining on campus were supported. ‘This represented a huge sacrifice for both the team and their families who had been expecting to spend uninterrupted time together after what had been an incredibly challenging period.’ As restrictions eased in Spring 2021, the number of students self-isolating increased. Numbers peaked during Kent Summer Fest, with a record number of students needing to self-isolate ahead of their anticipated departure date causing ‘an extraordinary amount of work’. The Isolation Team were also on hand to support our Accommodation Office with administering two rent rebates in the Spring – ‘a colossal effort and, again, far outside the team’s normal remit.’ The nomination ends: ‘All of this was done in addition to the team’s usual work and represents an outstanding and sustained contribution to the University with far reaching impacts for our students and their families.’Picture shows: Jacqui Double, RachelWalmesley, Alison Polden, Louisa Harvey, Jan Williams and Caroline Hames.