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Lunch with the Vice-Chancellor

December 8, 2011

Preparation

I was aware from the start of the Award that there was going to be a Lunch held with the Vice-Chancellor, so I simply waited to be contacted regarding this. When I received the email, I had the choice of two dates to attend, and I could only make the Lunch on the 8th December, so I planned to go to that one. I was told that I would have to arrive promptly, as it would be a popular event.

Participation

I arrived early to the ARC Training Room, signed in and took a seat prior to the talk with the Vice-Chancellor. It was a very big turnout and the room filled up very quickly, so it was good preparation to arrive early. The lunch essentially consisted of a Q&A session with the Vice-Chancellor and the Pro Vice-Chancellor. I didn’t actually ask any questions myself but I observed the questions being put forward by other people, regarding things like studying abroad and the ERASMUS scheme and also another issue which often came up, which was the number of contact hours people were receiving.

Action

At the end of the lunch, the Vice-Chancellor gave out his email address to everyone so that we could email him if we needed to. I chose to email him to thank him for the great opportunity to be able to ask him questions. I thought it was so good that we had such an accessible Vice-Chancellor. I had an issue which cropped up briefly at the lunch, which involved my prospect of changing my degree course, and I asked if he could offer any help regarding this. I was very pleased that he replied to my email and helped to point in me in the right direction.

Reflection

I clearly didn’t really participate much at this lunch, so when I’m faced with similar situations in the future it may be a good idea to be more Confident and to speak up and share my views and ask questions. This would help to improve my Oral Communication skills, especially as I would have to be speak quite formally to the Vice-Chancellor, because even though he is very accessible, he is still in a more hierarchical position compared to me, so I would treat him with respect and adjust my language to address him.

Nevertheless, I didn’t feel that there were any issues which urgently needed raising at the session, as no important problems had cropped up at our SSC Meetings. I even emailed the Chair of the SSC beforehand, asking if there were any things that needed to go higher, or if I should ask others about any issues. But the main focus was to put forward things that I felt were important, because no students had made us aware of any major issues.

It would also be a good idea in the future to feed back the information from this event to the SSC (which we may do at our forthcoming meeting) and to subsequently feed this back to the students on the course. This may link in quite well with the ‘Sort it Out’ campaign, which I believe collected similar results, especially in terms of contact hours. Completing the Feedback Loop is my main aim this semester, and even though it is very difficult to be able to reach all of the people on my course, I will try my best to do it.

Vice-Chancellor’s Advisory Committee notes

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