Students Staff

15 August 2017

Dave pedals for underprivileged young people in nine-day challenge

Filed under: Latest news, People pages, Sport — Tags: , — Nerissa Blower @ 4:33 pm
Dr Dave Parry

Dr Dave Parry

Our Director of Sport Dr Dave Parry will be cycling 969 miles in nine days and hopes to raise £2,000 for IntoUniversity, a charity which helps children and young people from a poor background achieve their potential.

Explaining why he chose this charity Dave said: “Having come from a working class family, and being the only person in my family to go to University, I am particularly passionate about giving young people life chances and opportunities. I visited an IntoUniversity centre in Hackney and the staff there were really dedicated and enthusiastic and the work that they are doing is really making a difference to the lives of those young people.”

Dave, who lives in Brightlingsea, will be joining over 800 cyclists for the Deloitte Ride Across Britain, starting at Land’s End on 9 September and finishing at John O’Groats on 17 September.

Although he has taken part in a few triathlons and multi-day cycles in the past, this sponsored cycle will be his biggest accomplishment to date.

“Time is a challenge, as I have a busy work schedule and a young family. I am definitely ‘under-cooked’, but hopefully will ride myself into fitness as the event progresses (fingers crossed anyway!)”

To make a donation to the sponsored ride, please visit Dave’s fundraising page.

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Fun at the Forum

Filed under: Latest news — Heather Leathley @ 1:25 pm

fun palaces smallThe Forum Library is joining more than 300 Fun Palaces across the UK set to erupt with free and fun activities on the weekend of Saturday 7 October and Sunday 8 October, celebrating the fantastic culture in our Southend community.

Fun Palaces is a nationwide campaign to bring together the cultural skills of people in  local communities for others to learn and enjoy, and has previously included artists, scientists, theatre-makers, knitters, astronomers, magicians, gardeners, singers, conservationists, swimmers, dancers, theatre-makers, crafters and more, showcasing and sharing arts, science, technology, history, crafts, digital and sports.

If you have a skill you would like to share as a maker sign up here or if you have a burning desire to learn something new, enrol now. You can also register your interest by filling out a form at the Forum reception desk on the ground floor or at the University’s Info Point on the second floor. Make sure to sign up by Friday 15 September.




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Feast your eyes on this

Filed under: Latest news — Heather Leathley @ 11:55 am

Friday Night Feast webHere’s a chance to rub shoulders with the stars by bidding to appear on the new series of Friday Night Feast filming on Southend Pier throughout September.

Jamie Oliver and Jimmy Doherty are returning with their successful Channel 4 show, whose previous celebrity guests have included Usain Bolt, Orlando Bloom and Kate Hudson.

They will be recording throughout September, so if you like delicious foods served with a dash of celebrity, apply to join in the fun by emailing

More details can be found here.


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Simply a name change

Filed under: Latest news — Heather Leathley @ 11:41 am

Simply Gym is the new name for Rush Fitness in Victoria Avenue in Southend and they continue to offer special deals to University of Essex staff and students.

Staff membership is £14.99 for peak use, with no joining fee,  and you can pick up a one day guest pass at the Student Services Hub on the second floor in The Forum.

To join head up to Simply Gym reception with your staff ID.

simply-gym-logo story


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9 August 2017

Welcome 2017 needs you!

Filed under: Campus news, Latest news, Student experience, What's on — Communications, CER @ 12:17 pm
We can all do our bit to help our new students feel they belong at Essex.

We can all do our bit to help our new students feel they belong at Essex.

Welcome 2017 is fast approaching and this year we want to deliver an even bigger and better Welcome experience; giving everyone the opportunity to get involved in creating a warm and friendly atmosphere for our new students.

This year’s welcome theme is belonging. We want every student to enjoy a smooth arrival, to feel that we care about them, that we’ll help them settle in and find friends – and that they belong at Essex.

But creating a sense of belonging, in so many different people, from so many different places and with so many different backgrounds isn’t going to be easy – and that’s where you come in.

We would like everyone, no matter what their role or position within our University, to be part of our Welcome team. We want our new students to be greeted by smiling faces, by staff that are willing to help, to help them find their way around campus and to make them feel like an important part of our unique community.

Research conducted by our own Dr Gillian Sandstrom has shown that students who feel a stronger sense of belonging are more likely to complete their degree and demonstrate higher achievement in their studies.

You can read more about Dr Sandstrom’s fascinating research in her interview on Essex Daily. Our Head of Residence Life, Victoria Frost, also shares her thoughts on how students who feel they matter to their university are more likely to succeed – and how all of us can play our part no matter what our role.

If you are able to take this one step further and volunteer for an official role as part of Arrivals Day, registration or Welcome, please fill in our quick form, letting us know your availability during the Welcome period and the kind of duties you’d be happy to perform. Take a look at Registration roles to see which you could volunteer for.

Graduation 2017 was a fantastic example of what a great event we can run if we all pull together. If you volunteered for Graduation – we’d love your help during Welcome, and if you didn’t – now’s your chance to lend a hand.

We very much appreciate any help you can give during this exciting time for our University. Welcome is our chance to show our Essex Spirit at its finest; to work together to show what a warm and welcoming place our campus is.

We hope everyone will embrace the chance to get involved.

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4 August 2017

Monster launch for new play

Filed under: Latest news — Heather Leathley @ 3:22 pm

East 15 Acting School graduate Ines Sampaio presents ‘Hey Billy, This is Just the Beginning’ a new site specific play about Southend outside The Forum on Saturday 12 August and Sunday 13 August.

On Saturday it will be performed at 4.00 pm ahead of the free outdoor screening of ‘Jurassic Park’. Bring your rugs and camping chairs and set yourselves up for the evening’s entertainment.

Ines was awarded £15,000 funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England to develop a new community play for Southend as part of the Borough Council’s 125th anniversary celebrations.

With this substantial funding boost, Ines worked  with local people to prepare this play in response to Billy Bragg’s words: ‘Southend’s the end’ in his hit song A13, Truck Road to the Sea.

Now with her army of performers she is bringing the play to life with the second performance on Sunday 13 August at 4.00 pm in the same location.

She said: “This is our chance to share our work with the rest of the community. These are just the first performances of a long term theatre adventure.”

The summer film season on the Big Screen continues on  Saturday 19 August with Labyrinth and finishes on Saturday 26 August with Finding Dory. All the films start at 6.00 pm.

Hey Bill poster

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2 August 2017

Meet our Transport Policy Manager

Filed under: Latest news — ckeitch @ 11:30 am

We spoke to Charlotte Humphries, the Transport Policy Manager at our Colchester Campus, to find out more about her work here at Essex.

An image of Charlotte Humphries

Charlotte Humphries

What are the main responsibilities of your role?

My role is to promote sustainable transport options and create policies that encourage people to travel to campus using sustainable transport where possible.

How many members of your team are there?

Although it’s only me that’s directly responsible for travel, I work with people from across the university from other Estate Management Teams, various focus and action groups, external organisations and the Students Union. Getting to campus effects everyone, so I try to engage with as many people as possible so I can ensure we have measures in place to enable people to make informed choices about how they get here.

How did you get into your current role?

I have worked in transport for over 30 years in one guise or another. I worked as a Travel Agent when I left school, then left to join to the railway where I stayed until I started in Travel Planning at Southend Hospital in 2006. Two years later, I moved to Essex County Council, where I worked as their Sustainable School Travel Manager. I was responsible for the delivery of the Sustainable Modes of Transport Strategy for Essex. I enjoy working within sustainability, as each day makes an impact to the world we live in.

So, how do you travel to campus?

Last July I took my car off the road and have been walking, cycling or catching the bus to work each day. I live 4km or 2 buses (each way) from campus, so with a little planning, I have not only saved money I have found time to become level 23 at Pokémon and I also like to geocache as I walk about!

What achievements are you most proud of?

Since starting at the University, I have received 20 transport related awards on behalf of the University for our Travel Plan measures and achievements and have secured over £100k of external funding for sustainable transport projects.

I am very pleased that the University has recently been awarded a Gold Travel Award by Essex County Council’s Sustainable Travel Team. The criteria for the award is very high and to achieve it I had to evidence the 59 measures that I use to promote sustainable transport at the University, like discounted bus tickets, our cycle maintenance service and car share scheme.

I am also tremendously proud of our Arrivals Day airport coach transfer service, which I have run for the past 4 years. With the help of our Student Ambassadors and EMS staff I have been able to personally welcome over 1400 international students to the UK and the University of Essex.

Why is travel planning so important?

If you use our car parks you’ll know that some days it can be hard to find a parking bay. Travel planning is essential for managing demand and helps us identify how we can make things easier for everyone coming to campus. It also helps us remove barriers to active and sustainable travel choices, so more people can get here without hopping in their car.

What other developments are currently happening on campus?

Well, we have a new cycle park under podia and which is located beneath Art Exchange, under square 5. Estate Management is continually developing sustainable travel measures to improve accessibility.

What is your top tip for working at the University?

If in doubt, ask. Someone will know the answer or at least give you some ideas.


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1 August 2017

Call for papers for China conference

Filed under: Latest news, Research impact — Tags: — Communications Office @ 10:36 am

image of dataNew approaches in data science and analytics will be discussed by scientists, professionals and industry leaders at a special conference in China, co-sponsored by the University.

The first International Conference on the Frontiers and Advances in Data Science (FADS) takes place on 23-25 October 2017 in Xian, China.

Co-sponsored by the University’s Institute for Analytics and Data Science (IADS), the conference will provide the perfect platform for experts to share knowledge about advances in this field and new approaches for harnessing data which can bring huge benefits to fields as diverse as health, finance, the environment, business and public policy.

The event is being co-chaired by Professor Maria Fasli, Director of IADS and UNESCO Chair in Analytics and Data Science.

Submissions of original and previously unpublished theoretical and practical work in all fields of data science and analytics including methodologies and techniques for big data are welcome. The deadline for paper submissions for the general conference is 10 August while several special sessions have later deadlines. Staff and students who are interested in participating and presenting at the conference are encouraged to get in touch with Professor Maria Fasli ( for enquiries and further information. All submissions will be reviewed by at least two members of the Program Committee on the basis of novelty, technical quality, relevance to the conference theme, significance, and clarity of presentation.

Further information is available from the FADS 2017 website


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