11 May 2015

Nominations for the Office of Honorary Treasurer

Senate has recently approved the appointment of the current Honorary Treasurer, Dr Stephen Kingon, to the position of Pro-Chancellor. In this context, steps are now being taken to appoint a new Honorary Treasurer, to take up post as soon as possible.
In accordance with the approved Regulations, nominations are now invited from members of staff, students and the wider University community for consideration by the Special Committee, established to oversee this process.  All nominations should be submitted to the Registrar’s Office, under confidential cover, by no later than Monday 25 May 2015, using the pro forma available here.
In submitting nominations, you should note the requirements of the position as set out in the Job Description/Specification, also available on the above website. 
For further details, please contact Clare Jamison in the Registrar’s Office on 028 9097 2505.
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Launch of QPol Website

A website has been launched for QPol, an exciting new public policy engagement initiative that is being piloted over the next few months at the University.

Available at, the website will be a vehicle through which Queen's academics will focus their engagement with those involved in the policy-making process by providing independent, evidence-based analysis and solutions to government, politicians and others involved in tackling the major challenges of the day.

The website will also include a blog that will highlight key public policy challenges, invigorate discussion and debate and connect our research expertise to the policymaking community.

All academic staff are encouraged to consider contributing to the blog. For more information, contact

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Mental Health Awareness Week, 11–17 May

According to the UK’s Mental Health Foundation 1 in 6 of us in the UK struggle with mental health issues at any one time, and each year 1 in 4 of us will experience a mental health problem such as anxiety or depression.

During Mental Health Awareness Week, Monday 11 – Sunday 17 May, Staff Wellbeing is running a number of events to raise awareness and promote mental wellbeing:

  • Mental Health Awareness  A student-led session exploring contemporary themes related to anxiety and depression. Tuesday 12 May, 1.00pm – 2.00pm, MBC, Teaching Centre Room 204.
  • Relaxation Session delivered by Carecall, the Staff Counselling Provider. Friday 15 May, 1.00pm – 2.00pm, Peter Froggatt Centre/03/006B.

Register to attend the above events by emailing including “Mental Health Week” in the subject line.

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Policy on the Acceptance of Gifts, Gratuities and Hospitality

The University is committed to the highest levels of corporate governance and ethical standards in relation to the stewardship of the public and private funds for which it is responsible. 
In this context, Senate has approved a Policy on the Acceptance of Gifts, Gratuities and Hospitality.  This provides guidance on the circumstances in which it is, and is not, appropriate to accept gifts, gratuities and hospitality. The policy is designed to offer protection, both for these individuals and for the University, on those occasions when a gift or hospitality has been accepted, by recording the reasons for acceptance, in an accountable, objective and transparent way. 
The policy applies to all University staff, both full-time and part-time, and to lay members of Senate and co-optees to University Committees.
Please ensure that you are familiar with the policy and the related reporting and approval procedures, full details of which can be found here.
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Share your vision of Belfast and be in with a chance of winning

Belfast City Council want to hear your ideas on how they should continue to improve the city for all citizens. You can help the Council and its partners make your vision a reality as part of the Belfast Agenda, which will set out measurable medium and long term goals for social, economic and environmental improvements for Belfast over the next 15 years.

You can share your ideas by completing an online survey available here.

We are running a competition to collect the best ideas and submit them as part of the Queen’s University response to the consultation.  Tell us in one line how you feel Queen’s contributes to Belfast - this could be something we are currently doing or your idea of how we could contribute over the next 15 years.  Send your idea to by Wednesday 27 May. The top three ideas will each win a £50 Amazon voucher.

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The Conversation

Four Queen's articles have been published in The Conversation this week:

If you would like to write for The Conversation, email

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Vice-Chancellor's Video Blog

VC's Blog April 2015The latest video blog from the Vice-Chancellor is available here.

A transcript is available here.

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Learning at Work Week 2015: 'Shaping our Future'

Learning at Work Week 2015 will take place from 18 – 24 May. This year's theme, 'Shaping our Future', reflects the vital role of learning and development in building resilient, forward-thinking and creative workplaces. 
So help to “Shape your Future” and register for:
  • Monday 18 May, Coping with Change, 11.30am – 12.30pm. For all staff who would like to develop personal coping strategies to help feel positive about change in their lives.
  • Tuesday 19 May, Manager Wellbeing Training, 9.30am – 12.30pm. This session aims to equip managers with the skills to identify and understand their own personal stressors, recognise the importance of early intervention in dealing with issues in the workplace, deal with potentially difficult conversations and situations and identify how to best prevent and manage stress in the workplace. Participants will also be made aware of all the support available both to managers and staff within Queen’s. The target audience is Grade 9 upwards and equivalent.
  • Wednesday 20 May, Unleash Your Creativity, 10.00am – 12.00pm. Tips and techniques for flexing creative thinking muscles. Through games and activities, this session will encourage staff to make positive steps to increase creativity.  
To book a place on any of these sessions, log onto Queen's Online (, then select 'Training Courses' from the list on the left of the page and follow the link for 'iTrent Self Service'.
Follow ‌Learning at Work Week on twitter: @QUBLearningWeek.


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Staff Wellbeing - Healthchecks

Staff Wellbeing is offering health checks for staff throughout May and June. The comprehensive check, which lasts 30 minutes, will be carried out by qualified nursing professionals.

Checks will be carried out on the following dates and locations:

  • Tuesday 19 and Wednesday 20 May, MBC
  • Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 May, Occupational Health, Lennoxvale Avenue
  • Wednesday 3 and Thursday 4 June, Occupational Health, Lennoxvale Avenue
  • Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 June, MBC

Further information about the Healthchecks, including costs and booking arrangements, are available on the Staff Wellbeing Website.


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Claim a chocolate bar through WARPit

WARPit, the University’s online furniture and resource reuse initiative, has achieved savings of over £30,000 since its launch in 2014. To celebrate this success, the Estates team have uploaded chocolate bars to the portal. To receive a chocolate bar, staff can register with WARPit here. Only one Fairtrade chocolate bar can be claimed per staff member, and these will be delivered via internal mail. 
WARPit helps to limit the amount of waste the University sends to landfill, reducing both our disposal costs and our carbon footprint. Re-using furniture and office supplies saves money spent on purchasing new equipment and helps to free-up the space occupied by unused equipment. All Queen’s staff members can sign up to the WARPit system to donate and claim office items for use within the University. Furniture isn’t the only item available. A resource can be anything from good quality stationery to lab equipment and even plants.


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New Exhibition at the Naughton Gallery

‌Staff are invited to the launch of an internationally acclaimed exhibition on renowned Spanish Baroque poet, Luis de Góngora, in the Naughton Gallery on Thursday 14 May, 6.00pm – 8.00pm
Hosted by the School of Modern Languages, ‘Góngora: The Never-Fading Star’ is one of the most important exhibitions ever on early modern Spanish literature. The invitation to host the event was extended by the Spanish Embassy and AC/E (Acción Cultural Española) in recognition of Queen’s research strengths in the Spanish Golden Age.

A collaborative international conference on the Spanish Golden Age entitled ‘Imaginary matters’ will accompany the launch of the exhibition.
The exhibition will run until 31 May 2015. Naughton Gallery opening hours are Tuesday – Sunday, 11.00am – 4.00pm.
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MSCA IF 2015 Information Session

The EU Team will host lunchtime information sessions on Friday 22 May for the Marie Sklowdowska-Curie Individual Fellowships 2015 call. Aimed at both supervisors and potential researcher applicants, the sessions will present general information on the scheme as well as a case study of a successful Fellowship.
Click here to register your attendance.
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Inaugural Lecture: Professor Caroline Malone

Professor Caroline Malone from the School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology will deliver her inaugural lecture on Wednesday 13 May at 4.00pm.
The lecture, Navigating in the Neolithic: Myths, Megaliths and Ancient Malta, will take place in the Main Lecture Theatre (0G029), Elmwood Building. RSVP to June Feeney,, 028 9097 3350.
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IGFS Newsletter

The latest edition of the Institute for Global Food Security's Newsletter is now available. Click here to access it.

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Physiological Society Guest Speaker series

The Centre for Biomedical Sciences Education invites staff to attend the Physiological Society Departmental Seminar Scheme Guest Speaker Series.
The first seminar in the series will be delivered by Professor Judy Harris (Professor of Physiology, University of Bristol), who was recognised in 2014 as a 'Teacher Scientist' in the Science Council List of 100 Leading Practising Scientists. The seminar, Engaging Students and Valuing Teachers,
will take place on Wednesday 13 May at 2.00pm in South Lecture Theatre (G23 ST), MBC.
For further details, please contact Dr Etain Tansey,
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This week at the QFT: 
ROSEWATER: The story of the journalist Maziar Bahari who, while covering the Iranian elections in 2009, was imprisoned for 118 days by the Ahmadinejad regime.
FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD: A great lead from Carey Mulligan as Bathsheba, the headstrong young woman in late 19th-century Dorset who is to inherit a handsome farm, and an excellent supporting turn from Michael Sheen as Mr Boldwood, the neighbouring middle-aged landowner who is to become tragically infatuated with Bathsheba.
PHOENIX: "Four stars  The threads of a concentration camp survivor’s return to postwar Germany are woven into a masterful web by Christian Petzold"  The Guardian.
DOCUMENTARY: DARK HORSE: The true story of how a barmaid in a former mining village in South Wales bred a racehorse on her allotment that went on to become a champion.
DOCUMENTARY: GRANITO: HOW TO NAIL A DICTATOR: When Pamela Yates made her first documentary, When the Mountains Tremble (1982), she could not have imagined that 30 years later it would be used as forensic evidence in the trial against Guatemalan ex-dictator Efraín Ríos Montt. Part political thriller, part memoir, Granito: How to Nail a Dictator shows how the filmmaker's first documentary became a granito — a tiny grain of sand — that helped to tip the scales of justice.
QFT FILM QUIZ: If you know your Insomnia from your Sleepless in Seattle, your Cool Runnings from your Silent Running, then sign up for class. It's time to go back to school... way back! Tickets are free but must be booked in advance. Maximum of five players per team. Wednesday 13 May, 9.00pm, QFT Foyer.
Coming up from Friday: Samba, Lambert and Stamp, Girlhood, L.A. Confidential, Chimes at Midnight, German Concentration Camps Factual Survey, Force Majeure.
Congratulations to Muriel Orr, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, who won two tickets to Far From the Madding Crowd in last week’s competition!
Staff ticket price: £5; standard ticket price: £6.70. 
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Queen's Sport

Summer Scheme 2015 – Staff Enrolment NOW OPEN
Running from Monday 6 July to Friday 21 August (seven weeks), this year's scheme will have all the favourite themed weeks, including a festival of sport week in week 4 which will offer ’20 sports over 5 days’. For further information on this year’s scheme (including dates, prices and the programme of activities), please click here or contact Queen’s Sport reception on 028 9068 1126.
Lagan Construction Group University Boat Race 2015
Queen's will take on Trinity in the 11th Annual University Boat Race on Saturday 6 June. This year's VIP enclosure is at Cutter’s Wharf and tickets can be purchased at PEC reception for £25.00 per person. This includes a gourmet barbeque lunch and complimentary drink, with exclusive access and excellent views of the racing as the crews sprint for the finish line, all while enjoying a live jazz band and complimentary race programme. For more information, click here.
Rowing Camp 2015
Now in its 5th Year, Queen’s Rowing Academy offers wider community access to rowing. This year, both the Men’s and Ladies’ Boat Clubs, as well as Queen’s Sport, will give children the opportunity to try rowing over three weeks. For more information, please click here or contact Queen’s Sport reception on 028 9068 1126.
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Continuing Professional Development
  • Wednesday 13 May: Evaluation of Teaching, 2.00pm – 5.00pm
  • Friday 15 May: Linking Teaching and Research, 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Monday 25 May (Additional Date): Using Computer Assisted Assessment (including QuestionMark), 9.30am – 4.30pm.
Higher Education Lunchtime Forum 
  • Thursday 14 May: Blogging in Teaching and Learning, 1.00pm – 1.55pm, Senate Room, Lanyon Building. The session will be led by Dr Suzel Reily (School of Creative Arts). A sandwich lunch will be provided from 12.45pm. 
Guest Speaker Series 2014–2015
  • Tuesday 19 May 2015: Motivating Student Learning, 1.30pm – 4.30pm, Canada Room/Council Chamber. Led by Dr Kate Exley, Higher Education Consultant.  Further information is available from the CED website.
 9th CED Annual Conference 
  • Thursday 25 June: Blending the Learning: Incorporating Technology in Your Teaching. Further details are available on the CED website.
To book a place on a training course, log onto Queen's Online (, then select 'Training Courses' from the list on the left of the page and follow the link for 'iTrent Self Service'.
A full list of all CED events and courses together with further information can be accessed here
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 The following Staff Training and Development Unit courses are available for booking:
  • Tuesday 19 May: Applying Your Research to Policy Agendas, 9.30am – 1.00pm
  • Wednesday 20 May: Health and Safety for Co-ordinators, 10.00am – 12.30pm
  • Tuesday 26 May: Career Exploration for Researchers, 9.30am – 1.00pm
  • Friday 29 May: Health and Safety Induction, 10.00am – 12.00pm
Leadership and Management Development Opportunities 
Aimed at Professional Support Staff Grade 7 and above and Academic Staff Grade AC2 and above, places are available on the following Developing for Success workshops:
  • Wednesday 13 May: Instilling a Customer Focus, 9.00am – 3.00pm
  • Wednesday 27 May: Leading Change in HE, 9.30am – 3.15pm
STDU's full 2014/15 Course Programme can be viewed online here.
To book a place on a training course, log onto Queen's Online (, then select 'Training Courses' from the list on the left of the page and follow the link for 'iTrent Self Service'.
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IT Training Courses

Places are available on the following courses:

  • Wednesday 13 May: LinkedIn for Beginners, 2.00pm – 5.00pm
  • Wednesday 13 May: Web Authoring: Introduction to CMS (Content Management System), 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Monday 18 May: NVivo – An Introduction, 9.30am – 4.30pm
  • Tuesday 26 May: Guide to Computing Facilities, 1.15pm – 2.30pm
  • Wednesday 3 June: Working with SharePoint (for Site contributors), 10.00am – 12.00pm
  • Thursday 4 June: Working with SharePoint (for Site Administrators), 10.00am – 12.00pm

To book a place on a training course, log onto Queen's Online (, then select 'Training Courses' from the list on the left of the page and follow the link for 'iTrent Self Service'. Course dates can be viewed at:

ECDL – The new improved test system allows the candidate to practice and diagnose what topics need revision (note – this is not used for ECDL Advanced). For more information on ECDL, click here. The next test date is Thursday 14 May, 1.00pm – 2.30pm.

Tip of the day: You can use Excel's LEN function to count the number of characters in a cell e.g. =LEN(A1). Useful if you use a spreadsheet to plan your Tweets!

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