Students Staff


17 January 2020

Our zero tolerance approach to sexual harassment and sexual violence

Filed under: Colchester, Loughton, News, Southend — Communications, CER @ 2.10 pm

We are committed to ensuring our University is a welcoming and inclusive place, where everyone is safe and treated with respect. Here is an update on our ongoing work in this area. 

If you experience any behaviour that does not uphold our values, report it online. Search Essex, Report and Support.

The University of Essex has a zero tolerance approach to all sexual harassment and sexual violence. We do not and will not tolerate such behaviour and, together with our Students’ Union, we are committed to making our University an inclusive and welcoming environment, where everyone is safe and treated with respect.

As a result of concern about how we have handled some of the complaints made by our students in the past, particularly the length of time these had taken to be completed, last academic year we undertook a full review of our policy and processes. This has resulted in a number of changes to our disciplinary and support processes.

The most important change has been the substantial revision of the Code of Student Conduct, which we strengthened to ensure we have the tools and policies in place to improve our handling of such cases. You will now be aware of the revised Code of Student Conduct and our expectations of behaviour, and this remains at the heart of us all making our University a welcoming and safe environment.

We have also enhanced our reporting platform Report and Support, which allows you to report any event or concern you have, and you can report anonymously if you feel you need to.

Alongside improving reporting and disciplinary processes, we have also introduced consent training; bystander training; additional security patrols at night and CCTV coverage across all our campuses; and have provided additional resources for our conduct team to ensure we manage complaints as quickly as possible.

Importantly, University Senate now receives a termly assurance report on the implementation of the Code of Student Conduct 2019-20. This report will be considered by Senate next week, with the information then shared with students through the SU.

We have taken independent external advice to ensure we are creating a fair and transparent process that supports students who make complaints and ensures their wellbeing is monitored, and will continue to do so, on an ongoing basis.

If you are the victim of, or witness to, an incident that you feel is a breach of the Code of Student Conduct; you should report the incident through Report and Support. The University’s conduct procedures are not intended to replace criminal proceedings and if the allegation you have made might be an offence under criminal law, you are expected to report the matter to the Police. More information about reporting a crime is on our student directory and support is available through the Student Services Hubs at each of our campuses.

This area remains a priority for our whole community, and we all need to play our part in ensuring we are a safe and inclusive environment. We are a community of supportive and courageous people who, working together can and will instigate change.

If you have any suggestions or feedback or if you need support with any of the issues raised above please contact our Student Services Hub.

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19 November 2019

Disability History Month

Filed under: Colchester, News — Laura Mathias @ 10.34 am

Disability History Month starts this Friday (22 November 2019). This year will focus on Leadership, Resistance and Culture. Our Inclusion Manager, Erkan Ibrahim, explains what you can do to mark the awareness month.

Throughout the month, we are encouraging staff and students to display posters that promote important historical figures that have demonstrated leadership in challenging outdated perceptions of disability, fighting to resist discrimination and prejudice in order to change the culture.

The ‘social model’ of disability states that an individual is disabled by their surroundings and the perceptions of others, not by their impairments. It puts the onus on society to ensure that services are accessible, and on people to ensure that they address their own bias and challenge discrimination towards disabled people.

“An individual is disabled by their surroundings and the perceptions of others, not by their impairments”

Historically, the term ‘disabled’ has often implied that a person is less-able than others because they have a hidden or visible impairment or a long term medical condition. This is in keeping with the ‘medical model’ of disability which sees the disabled person as the problem that needs to be addressed or fixed by healthcare professionals.

Disability Awareness Month

Disability has been, and often still is, seen as a charitable issue that requires sympathy. Many disabled people now feel that these models and perceptions are outdated, as they align with the ‘social model’ of disability.

Not everyone will feel confident starting a conversation about disability with others, as they may be afraid of causing offence by saying or doing the wrong thing. The Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity Service will be running informal ‘brown-bag lunch sessions’ to discuss what we can do to build an inclusive environment for our disabled students and staff:

  • Friday 29 November, 12-1pm, Lakeview Room (Silberrad Floor 1), Colchester Campus
  • Friday 13 December, 12-1pm – Lakeview Room (Silberrad Floor 1), Colchester Campus

Everyone is welcome. Please contact Shirley Dow (Inclusion Officer) if you have any accessibility requirements via or 01206 87 3952.

The library team will also be holding events throughout the month, keep an eye on their website for updates.

Want to talk about disability?

  • Students can contact the Student Wellbeing and Inclusivity Service on 01206 87 4000 or
  • Staff can contact Occupational Health on 01206 87 2399 or
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22 October 2019

Sustainable Transport around the University

Filed under: Colchester, News — Laura Mathias @ 4.14 pm

We ran a competition during Welcome Week offering students the chance to win a bike. Our Sustainability Team wanted you to think about ways to reduce your carbon footprint, recognising that little choices can lead to big changes and the winner didn’t disappoint…

Sylwia Strzelecka is a first year student studying Modern Languages and here’s her pledge:“I will continue to use my reusable water bottle, try to transition into vegan (from currently being vegetarian), buy less and from sustainable brands where i can, walk rather than taking the bus if possible, donate to offset travel related emissions when flying with Ryanair to my home country, do my best to spread the message and raise awareness among my friends and encourage them to ditch plastic straws at least! I will always carry a reusable bag and make every endeavour to be nicer to our planet.”

Sylwia told us she will use her new bike to cycle to Colchester where she is hoping to get a part time job. She said everyone should give cycling a go, the more people that cycle the better it is for the environment and also it’s great for saving money.

Student with her bike

Sylwia Strzelecka, winner of the competiition

Here are some of the other pledges the team liked:

  • “I pledge to only buy clothes from charity shops or second-hand vintage shops – fast fashion is one of the biggest contributors to environmental issues.”
  • “I pledge to use a menstrual cup and to not use pads or tampons.”
  • “I pledge to choose one day a week in which I reduce all my impact. For example, I would not watch TV and walking everywhere rather than take the bus.”

At Essex, we are continuing to work on our sustainable transport initiatives. We would love more staff and students to cycle to and from the University.

Take a look at the cycling provisions in place at our Colchester campus:

  • 32 cycle lockers and more on the way.
  • Cycle park adjacent to Rayleigh Tower at the end of the cycle path between Boundary Road and the North Towers causeway.
  • CCTV and lighting covers the park and there are places for 272 bicycles.
  • Cycle racks in 15 following locations
  • We have two fixing stations and pumps where cyclists can undertake minor repairs and pump up tyres.

If you would like to get your bike serviced, or perhaps you want to buy a bike, come and visit Dr Bike Service on Square 5 at our Colchester Campus every Wednesday during term time (8.30am – 2.30pm).

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8 October 2019

Yom Tov to all our Jewish students

Filed under: Colchester, Loughton, News, Southend, What's on — Communications, CER @ 4.04 pm

Yom Kippur, is the holiest day of the year for our Jewish students and starts at dusk on Tuesday 8 October, until after nightfall on Wednesday 9 October. If you’re unable to attend any teaching event because of religious observances, like Yom Kippur, we understand.

Information for students on the Colchester campus

The postcode of the nearest synagogue to the campus is CO1 2QG.  The easiest route for most students is to take the 62 bus to the top of East Hill (ask for the Castle or Hollytrees Museum) then walk down the hill and take a right-hand turn into Priory Street. Fennings Chase is a short distance on your left.

The Kol Nidre service starts at 6.30pm on Tuesday 8 October and there are services on Wednesday 9 October at 9.30am to 1.00pm and 4.30 to 8pm.

Information for students on the Southend campus

Southend and Westcliff Hebrew Congregation:   There is a kosher grocery next door.

Southend and District Reform Synagogue:

If you are unable to attend a teaching event due to Yom Kippur

If you have or will miss one or more teaching events due to religious observances, you should report your absence in your MyEssex portal.

Support on-campus, search: 

Support off-campus, search:

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2 May 2019

Nominate your research supervisor for a national award

Filed under: Colchester, Loughton, News, Southend — Communications Office @ 3.47 pm

If you have an inspirational research supervisor you can nominate them for this year’s Times Higher Education Awards.

You have until Wednesday 5 June to nominate Essex academics for the title of Outstanding Research Supervisor of the Year and entries can be submitted by Essex students or colleagues of the nominee.

The Times Higher Education Awards website says: “This award will be given to the individual who has created the most supportive, stimulating and inspirational research environment for doctoral students. Entries will be accepted from institutions, supervisors themselves or their students or colleagues, but in all cases the institution must support the submission and student testimonies must be included in the supplementary documentation.”

Qualities judges might be looking for in nominees might include

  • Evidence of outstanding results of their supervision over a number of years (Have students from a range of backgrounds been encouraged to pursue a doctorate? What have they gone on to achieve?)
  • A pioneering approach to supervision: what has the nominee done above and beyond that which is expected of any good supervisor?
  • Demonstrable enthusiasm for the role and going the extra mile to help students navigate through difficulties, academic or otherwise.
  • Challenging students intellectually and helping them to make substantial contributions to their academic field.
  • Providing additional support and facilities to give greater scope to their research.
  • Providing supervision to an exceptional number of candidates over time.
  • Offering constructive employment and career advice post-graduation

If you are planning to nominate a research supervisor please let our Communications Office know at: as the Communications team can help you with the application and can check the University will back the nomination.

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15 November 2018

One student’s role in commemorating the end of the First World War

Filed under: Colchester — Tags: , — Communications Office @ 8.33 am

History MA student Olivia Smith has spent four months working as a Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) intern at the Thiepval Memorial to the missing of the Somme in northern France. Last week she gave Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron a tour as part of the centenary commemorations. Here she tells us what it’s been like to play a role in ensuring the First World War dead are never forgotten.

Olivia giving a reading at the memorial

Olivia giving a reading at the memorial

Every day on site we give tours to visitors of the memorial. Only last week I had a school group of around 35 ask me for a tour, all around the age of 13 and14 so quite an impressionable age. I told them the story of one of the Victoria Cross winners William Macfadzen who died on 1 July 1916.

Macfadzen won his Victoria Cross because of his instant bravery. In the early hours of 1 July he was in a trench with his men preparing for battle. He was handing out grenades to his comrades and accidentally dropped the box of grenades. Two of the safety pins came out and without hesitation Macfadzen jumped on top of the box and sacrificed his life so that the rest of the men in the trench would be spared.

I told this story and I looked over to a little boy who was crying. He was crying in his sisters arms and said “I will always remember this story”. I felt so glad that he cried, because to me that meant he understood exactly why he was here.

Why it matters to keep telling the story of those who died

For me the most important aspect of this whole job is ensuring the younger generations understand what they are visiting on the Western Front and why.

It is down to my generation now to ensure this educational message is passed on.

Four months seem like such a long time but it really isn’t.

I feel very sad that the internship is coming to an end. I have no war dead in my family, but I have built up a wonderful personal connection with the stories of the men I have learnt about and I feel strongly that as part of the younger generation, it is now our duty to ensure these men will never be forgotten.

What it means to be part of the centenary

I can’t put into words how lucky I am to have spent just over a quarter of a year working in France with the CWGC. It is an experience I truly wish didn’t have to end; I am beyond proud to have worked with the CWGC. I am proud to say I have been a part of the centenary and I am more proud that I have played a role in ensuring the men of the First World War will not be forgotten.

11 November 2018 marked a century since peace on the Western Front; it marked the end of the centenary years but what it won’t mark is the end of remembering the men who died.”

Find out more about Olivia’s experience working at Thiepval.

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6 June 2018

Enter our data analysis competition for your chance to win £200

Filed under: Colchester, News, Southend — Communications Office @ 11.36 am

UKDA logoHave you used data for secondary analysis in your final year project or dissertation at Essex? We’re offering a prize for your research!

We’re looking for research that highlights social and economic issues and also showcases an interesting re-use of quantitative or qualitative data, available through the UK Data Archive.

The Essex Secondary Data Analysis Award is open to each level of study including undergraduate, Masters and PhD. A panel of lecturers and researchers across the Faculty of Social Sciences will judge the entries.

The winning candidate from each level of study will receive a prize of £200 in Amazon vouchers. Through the UK Data Archive at Essex, the winners will also get to showcase their quantitative and qualitative skills to the wider academic community, plus potential employers such as The Wellcome Trust and Cancer Research UK.

The winning entries and their key findings will be publicised in Essex Weekly and on the Essex website (if the winning students and their supervisors give permission).

How to enter

You’ll need to  submit an executive summary (two A4 pages maximum) outlining your research question, data used, methodology, results and example of your evidence such as table, graph or excerpt from interview transcript of your course work to the UK Data Archive.

Before you submit, please check for completeness and clarity of any graphs and illustrations, and accurate data citation

The deadline is 16 September 2018

We’ll contact shortlisted candidates by the end of September, and ask you to submit an electronic copy of your full work. Then we’ll announce the winners in October.

Terms and Conditions

The competition is open to any Essex students who have used quantitative or qualitative data available through the UK Data Archive in their research. This can include mixed methods approaches if one of the data sources is available from the UK Data Archive. Work submitted that does not use data from the UK Data Archive will be disqualified.

This competition is open to any undergraduate, Masters or PhD student enrolled at the University of Essex in any discipline for third year projects or dissertations on social and economic issues. Essex alumni or staff currently working at Essex who submitted dissertations in the last two years can enter. Entries can be submitted either by individuals or by department and schools.

By entering the competition, you hereby warrant that all information submitted by you is true, current and complete. The UK Data Archive reserves the right to verify the eligibility of all entrants.

For further details please contact the UK Data Archive.

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11 December 2017

School of Law – photography competition

Filed under: Colchester, News — ckeitch @ 2.45 pm

CameraShare your experience, show your talent and win a £50 Amazon voucher!

This year we would like students from the School of Law to submit a photo that they’ve taken during their time at Essex. The competition is open to all current School of Law students.

The winning photo will win a £50 Amazon voucher and second place photo will win a £25 Amazon voucher.

How to Enter:

  • This competition is only open to current University of Essex, School of Law students.
  • Only one entry allowed per student.
  • You must submit an original entry (not submitted to any other photography competition).
  • Submissions should be your own work or if you’ve had assistance this must be stated.
  • Submissions should be titled and described in the email in order to provide context to the photograph.
  • Incorrectly completed entries will be disqualified.
  • Photos submission deadline: 24 January 2018 (Week 17).
  • Entries are to be submitted by email to
  • Please make sure your photo is over 1MB in size.
  • By submitting the photos, the students will be granting permission for these images to be used by Essex School of Law for any marketing material/ social media.
  • The winner will be notified at a an event during the Spring Term.

Judging criteria:

  • The aim of the competition is for students to display photos that best captured their experiences of living and studying law at Essex.
  • The winning photo will be judged to be the most visually appealing,  original and self-explanatory.
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3 November 2017

Show your Essex Spirit and be part of our Christmas message

Filed under: Colchester, News — ckeitch @ 11.23 am

This year we have a very special way of celebrating Christmas –  a spectacular poster and video featuring you.

We are looking for students from all over the world to dress up in Christmas costumes and spread some seasonal joy by appearing on our enormo boards and in an online video which we will be sharing on social media.

A lucky handful of students will be chosen to represent their own international Christmas messages and will be awarded a £10 Waterstones voucher.

Photos will be taken at our Colchester Campus on Monday 20 November and the poster will be displayed throughout December.

The date for the filming will be confirmed as soon as we know what it is.

To take part, please email with your name, nationality and special Christmas message (in your own language) by Friday 17 November.

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20 October 2017

The Return of the King! Essex crown is back

Filed under: Colchester, News, What's on — ckeitch @ 10.12 am

Cherina Darrel is a project worker for our Student Engagement Team. We spoke to her to find out more about the return of Essex Crown.

An image of Cherina Darrel

Cherina Darrel

Essex Crown is back!  Can you remind us what Essex Crown is?
Essex Crown is an interdepartmental competition organised by the Essex Crown team in collaboration with all of our departments. Teams from each department will take part in a series of events to earn points and compete for the title Essex Crown Champions.

Last year was the first Essex Crown. Are you keeping the same format as last year or has anything changed?
Last year the competition lasted from December to January, but had such a huge impact that we’ve decided to host the competition over the course of the first two terms this year, so we’re kicking things off in October and the competition will run through to March which will give everyone the opportunity to get involved. We’ve also included some new aspects of the competition to shake things up a bit. So, while last year the Quest was a scavenger hunt style challenge, this year it will be a series of different challenges throughout the day. We’ve got plenty of other changes and additions lined up too, including some new activities at our Southend Campus.

Can you remind us of the different elements of Essex Crown?
There are eight elements of the Essex Crown competition:

  1. The Riddles: We’ll be posting a weekly riddle from the Library’s Twitter page and in department common rooms for people to solve and earn points by emailing with their department and the correct answer.
  2. The Quest: This is a series of intellectual, cognitive and team-building challenges which will be taking place across our campuses. Teams can take part in as many challenges as they’d like.
  3. The Exhibition: To earn points for their department, participants can attend and take part in any of the Essex Crown workshops hosted during the competition. This year participants will need to submit a final piece of work based on what they learn in the workshops. These will need to be digitised so they can be submit to us by email at
  4. Essex Sports events: There is a series of seven different sports competitions for people to complete, either individually or in teams.  These are for people of all abilities and points will be awarded for participation and performance.
  5. Essex Crown event of the week: Each week there will be a different Essex Crown event or activity on campus where participants can earn points. This can be anything from a volunteering event with V-Team or a lecture hosted by the University.
  6. The Escape Room: A Nightmare Before Christmas themed game in which teams must solve a series of puzzles and riddles using clues, hints and strategy to escape a secret room.
  7. Battle of the Consoles: A one-off event where people will compete in various one-to-one games on Wii-sports, PlayStation and other consoles.
  8. The Final Showdown: This is the final instalment of Essex Crown. The big show down. The ten departments with the most points will compete in a gameshow style event to win the title  of Essex Crown Champions.
A team from last year's competition

A team from last year’s competition

That sounds amazing! So Essex Crown is just for students, right?
No. We really want staff to get involved too. We’d like students and staff from every single one of our departments to work together throughout the different aspects of the competition. Essex Crown is for our whole community so whether you’re a student, student administrator or lecturer, you are 100% welcome to participate.

What are you most looking forward to this year?
I think we’re all looking forward to the Escape Room this year. It’s a new element of the competition which we’re running with Residence Life in Colchester and Southend . It will be really exciting and interesting to see people putting their problem solving skills to the test.

How can people follow what’s happening with Essex Crown?
To keep up with Essex Crown make sure you join our Essex Crown group on Facebook.  You should also keep an eye out for emails from your department and we’ll be sharing content on social media through departments, the library, the Sport’s Centre and Residence Life.

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