October 04, 2017

Looking forward to the year ahead

Dear colleagues,

The last of our new undergraduate and postgraduate students for 2017/18 have enrolled – joining other newcomers who arrived at Warwick over the last few weeks for pre-sessional courses, the PGCE and the MBChB. Chris Ennew and I were pleased to be able to speak to many of them, and their parents and families, over Arrivals Weekend and the first few days of term. The inevitable increase in traffic aside, welcome week developments have been well received, and it is great to see campus so busy and vibrant. Thank you to all of you who work so hard to make sure these first weeks for our new and returning students are welcoming and supportive.

Our returning students will, I hope, see a number of improvements to the campus following engagement with them last year: including refurbishments in Ramphal and Milburn House to integrate teaching and learning technology, plus the development of social study space, improved café facilities and performance space at Westwood. Work continues – as always! - on other major developments across campus: the Goose Nest temporary theatre opens later this week and the Sports and Wellness Hub, NAIC and Mathematical Sciences buildings are progressing well.

For staff, we have a packed term ahead. We can look forward to our new Education Strategy being finalised and consultation beginning on our new Research Strategy. Both of these are key pillars in our institutional aspirations. I hope to be able to reflect further on our future goals following discussion at the University Council in October – the first meeting to be led by our new Pro-Chancellor, Sir David Normington.

We will learn the results of our submission for the Race Equality Charter Mark, and the results of Coventry’s bid to be UK City of Culture, and we will continue to engage in discussions in Brussels and Paris on research collaboration and mobility opportunities.

We will welcome a number of new senior colleagues including Professor Patrick Tissington as Academic Director (Employability and Skills), a new Chair of the Faculty of Arts, Academic Registrar and a new Director of Strategy and Policy and our new HR system, SuccessFactors will be ready to go online in the coming months.

All-staff meeting dates for the year are now confirmed, and Rachel Sandby-Thomas will also be holding coffee mornings around campus this year. We hope to see as many of you as possible at these events.

Best of luck for the term ahead.

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