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The Week @ Keele Keele University
10 June 2011                                                                                    Issue 217

KEELE CLIMBS THE GREEN LEAGUE

Keele University has climbed 19 places in the Green League 2011 published this week.

Universities have been awarded degree-style classifications based on their environmental and ethical management and performance. Keele was placed 63rd out of 168 educational institutions and was awarded a 2:1, scoring maximum points in curriculum, publicly available environmental policy and Fairtrade accreditation.

The university's carbon management plan and new recycling scheme have also improved the university's environmental performance. Last year the university was placed 82nd with a "third class degree".

Professor Pat Bailey, dean of Natural Sciences and Pro-Vice Chancellor for Environment and Sustainability, said: "We are pleased with the improvement to our ranking in the Green League and look forward to developing our environmental initiatives further." 

The Green League is the only ranking of all UK universities by environmental and ethical performance. It is based on information submitted by universities to People & Planet, the largest student network in Britain campaigning to end world poverty, defend human rights and protect the environment.

SUCCESS FOR KEELE'S STUDENT ENTREPRENEURS

Students, graduates and staff joined in the celebrations at Keele Hall last Friday for the Speed Stars Awards 2011.The all day event celebrated the graduation of 16 start-up businesses from the SPEEDWM and EFS programmes, which are coordinated by the Student Enterprise team in Research and Enterprise Services.

The day included ten minute presentations by each business, outlining their business' development and the challenges they have overcome. Each start-up business also showcased their products and services in an exhibition throughout the day.

Each presentation was judged by a panel of business experts which included Dr Sharon George (School of Physical and Geographical Sciences), Dr Peter Hooper (Research and Enterprise Services), Mike Cole (Michelin Development Fund) and Steve Moore (Wolverhampton University). The Judges awarded prizes of £1500, £750 and £500 to the top three presenters to go towards the development of the business start-ups.

The winners, who are all recent Keele graduates, were Kath Warrilow, for her cupcake company, Cupcake Yourself (1st place), Michael Amaning, for his online comic book novel website, Rentmyhero Ltd (2nd place) and Kat Halsall and Kris Rodway, for their portable mini golf and skittles business, Putt&Pins Ltd (3rd place). The other businesses participating ranged from fine silver jewellery to green technology for carbon footprint reduction. Cupcake Yourself also won an additional £500 as the Student Choice for Best Overall Business.

Student Enterprise Manager, Dee Frankish, said: "It was a brilliant day for all our young entrepreneurs who have shown such commitment over the last nine months, with some of them travelling from London, Cheltenham, Oxford and Chester.

"Their presentations were excellent and painted a really good picture of the way their businesses have progressed, with all of them stating their intention to continue trading after the end of the programme."

NORTH AMERICAN FOUNDATION FOR KEELE UNIVERSITY EVENTS  

The Secretary & Registrar Simon Morris, John Easom (Alumni Officer) and Robin Cross (Fundraising Officer) recently attended four events in New York and Toronto with North American alumni.

They also attended the annual meeting of the North American Foundation for Keele University, which represents American and Canadian alumni and actively supports Keele University. They were accompanied by Morgan Davison, an American Master's student who was awarded the first NAFKU Scholarship in 2010-2011.

Two "Keele Comeback" events offered occasions to meet alumni in informal settings. Two "NAFKU Dinners" were held - one at the Harvard Club of New York and the other at the historic George Brown House in Toronto (pictured above). Neil Smith, President of NAFKU, hosted the New York dinner and Tim Gibbs, NAFKU Canada, hosted the Toronto dinner. Altogether 24 alumni came to one or more of the events, with all travelling long distances to attend.

The visit exceeded all expectations, with many alumni contributing or pledging donations to support the NAFKU Scholarship initiative. Keele University, supported by NAFKU, will now award two NAFKU Scholarships in 2011-2012 – one for an American and a second for a Canadian student to undertake postgraduate study at Keele. A longer-term fund will also be started for future Scholarships.

Alumni officer John Easom said: "Alumni were extremely encouraged by the incentives and opportunities for North Americans to pursue postgraduate courses at Keele. They offered many ideas how alumni might help Keele and Keele students through ambassadorship, involvement with study abroad students, meeting potential applicants, offering and enhancing work experience and career-related opportunities, and other opportunities to meet that go far beyond just being with fellow Keelites."

PETER TO LEAD INTERNATIONAL MASTERCLASSES IN ENVIRONMENTAL GEOPHYSICS

Professor Peter Styles of the School of Physical Sciences and Geography, and EPSAM, pictured with Professor John Arthur, Chairman of the Near Surface Division, has been invited to be the Inaugural Distinguished Visiting Instructor in Near Surface Geophysics for the European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers (EAGE). Professor Styles will deliver a series of masterclasses in Environmental Geophysics, aimed at users of these technologies rather than practitioners.

The course will run for a year from Easter 2012 and will include a sequence of workshops in Europe supplemented by a selected set of venues globally including the Middle East, and Australasia. The course will be underpinned by a monograph entitled 'Everything you wished to know about Environmental Geophysics but were afraid to ask!'.

The tour and course will be launched with a keynote lecture from Professor Styles at the First International Conference on Engineering Geophysics to be held in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates, from 11 to 14 December 2011.

HEALTH AND WELLBEING WEEK AT KEELE 

Health and Wellbeing Week, which began on Monday, gave staff the opportunity to experience and participate in new ways of maintaining and improving their physical and mental wellbeing as well as having a bit of fun at the same time especially in some of the more active sessions.

There was a range of activities organised which were well-received, particularly the laughter yoga workshop, the "Cool -Wall" lung function board and the arboretum walk (pictured below). The holistic complementary therapy session raised £35 for Nightline. It is hoped future events will be organised to encourage further participation.

Ian Williamson, head of the Department of Occupational Health and Safety, said: "The potential benefits of a good working environment are huge. This week has shown that we can unlock some of that potential. Feedback has been positive and I must thank all those that have contributed to the week."

 

UNDERGRADUATE
SCIENCE
BURSARIES
AWARDED TO
EPSAM

EPSAM staff have
once again been
awarded bursaries for
second-year
undergraduate
students to take part
in research projects
over the summer.

Seven projects have
been awarded by the
Nuffield Foundation:

"Ecological and
sedimentological
characteristics of
kettle-hole lakes in
the proglacial
environment,
Skeiðarársandur,
south-east Iceland",
Nicola Brocklehurst
working with Dr Katie
Szkornik and Dr Zoe
Robinson (Physical
Geography)

"Snowflakes and
Honeycombs: 
Dendrimer-zeolite
hybrid materials to
remove nitrate and
phosphate anions
from water", 
Benjamin Lucas
working with Dr
Katherine Haxton(Chemistry).

"X-ray flaring around
young suns and its
influence on
protoplanetary discs",
Richard Danyi
working with
Professor Rob Jeffries
(Astrophysics).

"ALICE -
Autofocusing Live
Cells", Michael
Corcoran working
with Dr KP Lam
(Computer Science).

"Prescribing drug
dosage and dosage
frequency to maintain
effective drug
concentration levels
in the blood:  A
Mathematical
Modelling Study",
Emma Phillips
working with Dr
Shailesh Naire
(Mathematics).

"A greener approach
to nuclear waste
storage", Claire
Green working with
Dr Richard Darton
(Chemistry).

"Geophysical
monitoring of
collapsing salt mines,
Northwich, Cheshire",
Claire Howell working
with Dr Jamie Pringle
(Geoscience).

Additionally, Dr
Katherine Haxton has
been awarded a
Wellcome Trust
Biomedical Vacation
Scholarship for
James Eyles to work
with her on a project
"Silver bullets for
bugs – how hybrid
materials can improve
antimicrobial wound
dressings".

 

CANADA TALK FOR
STEPHEN
 
SPIRE's Dr Stephen
Quilley, who is
currently spending
three months working
with Social Innovation
Generation, a unit in
the Faculty of
Environment at
University of
Waterloo, Ontario,
Canada, gave a talk
this week aimed at
academics, local
policy makers and
NGOs and others
interested in
sustainability across
the Ontario region.



In his talk, Open
Source Economics:
Looking for Meaning
in a Throwaway
World, he explored
"the significance of
this quest for
meaning – in
relationships with
others, our
environment and with
the products that we
make, use and
consume". The
presentation was
followed by a panel
discussion.



ENTERPRISING
COUNSELLORS


The first session on
"Starting up a
counselling practice"
was held this week at
Keele.

Organised by the
School of Psychology
and Keele's Student
Enterprise Manager,
Dee Frankish, 60
MSc Counselling
Psychology trainees
listened to business
advice and tips on
setting up and
running a private
counselling practice.

Jill Levens, Director of
Stoke Business
Initiative, explained
the basics of setting
up a business, and
three self-employed
therapy practitioners
(Hannah Scott,
Deborah
Shakespeare and
Shirley Harvey) gave
practical tips from
their own experience.

The students had a
positive response to
the session. Kevin,
one of the graduate
counsellors, said: "It
was really interesting
and provided us with
some important
information – a
fantastic session".

Student Enterprise
Manager, Dee
Frankish, added: "It
was great to have
such good
attendance with lots
of participation and
really practical
presentations and
advice on how to
avoid the pitfalls
facing a start-up
business".

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