All posts by Naomi Ireland-Jones

2017-18 Scholarships and Bursaries Awards

Leah Kadima-Muntu is a first year student, and is the 2017-18 recipient of the Shattock Family Scholarship. For Leah the financial support this award provides is very much appreciated, as not only will it allow her to buy textbooks and other academic paraphernalia, but it also enables her to experience a wider range of the cultural and extra-curricular activities that Durham University has to offer.

Since arriving in Durham Leah has joined  Durham Action on Singular Housing (DASH), a charity which aims to provide housing and support for those who are homeless or are at risk of being made homeless. She believes charities such as DASH are extremely relevant and much needed in our current socio-political climate: with homelessness on the rise, housing shortages and dependency on foodbanks she believes that many different groups are at risk, young people in particular. Leah says she is keen to do her bit to support others because she believes that it is reductionist simply to believe the aforementioned problems are a result of a meritocratic society – many people end up in bad positions merely due to chance, and it is very humbling to realise that she could just as easily be amongst the many thousands of young people forgotten and neglected by ‘the system’.

Following her degree, Leah is considering continuing in academia – her area of particular interest is Latin America during the Cold War – or to begin a career in political research or for a think-tank as a way to get involved in policy making.

Leah says:

St Chad’s has made me feel unbelievably welcome and I am glad to be a member of this college. What drew me to St Chad’s was how outward-thinking and conscientious it is, as well as the fact that the various charity societies will enable me to further expand my social outreach….

I am extremely grateful … for being a recipient of [this] scholarship; many… are not necessarily aware of financial help which is provided by colleges like St Chad’s through generous benefactors like [Matthew Shattock and his family]…

I am most grateful to be a recipient of a Shattock Family Scholarship at St Chad’s; this award will allow me to put 100% of my effort into my studies and worry less about living expenses, as well as giving me the opportunity to have a full experience of university life, which in turn will allow my views to become more nuanced as I meet and get to know people from outside my particular bubble.  All this experience will hopefully make me a more well-rounded individual.

 

Chapman Hau is a first year student in Chemistry and is the newest recipient of the Cassidy Scholarship for 2017-18.

For him the Cassidy Scholarship provides the financial support he needs to pursue his dreams. In addition it has inspired him to give back to the community. He has already signed up to various volunteering opportunities in Durham – secondary and sixth form tutoring, maths club and dog walking to name a few! Having tutored and helped children from his community in order to weaken their generalisation that success is unachievable for those from less privileged backgrounds, he hopes to be able to serve in an educational position sometime in the future so that he may be of benefit to the less fortunate and under-represented social groups.

Chapman says:

Even though I have just begun my undergraduate studies at St Chad’s College I am thoroughly enjoying College life and my course. During my first few weeks here I have delved into a new world of learning. I have already participated in many events at St Chad’s and at Durham University as a whole – I got matriculated (twice!), visited the Fresher’s Fair where I had a taste of the many societies Durham has to offer, and in my first lab session I synthesised cyclohexene.

The very generous Cassidy Memorial Scholarship will only continue to make my time at Durham more enjoyable without the worry of financial difficulties. My academic pursuits would not be possible without the kind support from the College alumni, friends and fellows. I would therefore like [say] a massive thank you [to everyone who has helped to contribute towards this scholarship and the College community].

2016-17 Scholarships and Bursaries

 

Ermos Chrysochos is a first year Liberal Arts student, in his second term at St Chad’s.  He has already been making his mark: he gave the ‘Toast to the Immortal Memory’ at the College Burns’ Supper in January and is already a passionate Chadsian.  He has been awarded a Shattock Family Scholarship worth £3,000 for each year of his undergraduate degree course. Ermos is an accomplished violinist who started to play at the age of eight and was a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain for four years.  One of his challenges is the cost of combining his degree with his musical ambitions; a student loan does not cover violin lessons. Being awarded this scholarship, however, will mean that Ermos will be able to study with the co-leader of the Northern Sinfonia at the Sage in Gateshead and continue to be a leading member of the Durham University Orchestral Society.

“Music to me”, comments Ermos, “whether listening or making it, brings people together whatever their background. So, whilst the scholarship will immensely benefit me personally, I also know I will use it to live up to our College motto: ‘Non vestra sed vos’ – ‘Not what you have but who you are’.

 

This award has been made possible through the generosity of St Chad’s alumnus Matthew Shattock and his family.

“I am convinced that this is a very worthy cause … the creation of this scholarship programme to supplement those without the full means, but with the unquestionable ability, to benefit from the collegiate education which has shaped my own life and career indelibly. I had the benefit of a fully funded education at Durham and this turned out to be a life changing experience for me.  I hope to contribute to the same opportunity for others.”

-Matthew Shattock (Politics, 1980-83)

 

 

Third year Law undergraduate Marianne Holbrook has been awarded one of our first three Joe Cassidy Memorial Bursaries of £1,000 which honour the memory of our late Principal, Dr Joe Cassidy. Marianne has been a volunteer teacher in Malawi, Senegal and South Africa where, she says, her “interest in promoting human rights and justice in the face of political instability and in socially complex environments developed.”

She is hoping to pursue a career in economic and foreign aid policy development with the UN. Marianne applied for this Joe Cassidy award so that she can further her interests in social justice and continue to undertake volunteer and internship positions.

 

 

Stephanie Higgins, a first year Liberal Arts student, also receives a Cassidy Memorial award.  For Stephanie, receiving a scholarship from St Chad’s means that she can be fully involved in College and wider university life and work, and not have to take on yet more hours in her part-time on-line tutoring job.

Stephanie said, “I recently participated in a ‘Rice and Beans’ challenge where we ate only plain rice and beans for a week to raise awareness of food poverty and money for Tearfund. Being the recipient of a scholarship will help me to do more volunteering in social action projects within Durham”.

 

 

 

Nathaniel Attenborough is the first member of his family to attend university and wants to make the most of the opportunities that both his Cell Biology degree and being at St Chad’s can offer.  He volunteers in a local youth club when at home and is fully involved in College life at St Chad’s during term time: “I greatly enjoy everyday life around College and genuinely feel a part of a college family in ways friends at other universities cannot experience.”  Like too many students today, Nathaniel is worried about being able to afford living out of College next year; he said

 

“This Joe Cassidy Scholarship will make a significant difference to my time at university, in relieving the distraction of financial worries and allowing me to truly embrace what Chad’s has to offer.”

 

Dominic Birch is our 2016-17 Elizabeth Griffiths Scholar. He is a returning Chad’s student, having just completed his undergraduate degree at Durham. Since his return, now as part of the Middle Common Room Dom has been  the MCR’s Academic Affairs Officer – promoting interdisciplinary discussion in the College, organising several research forums, and publishing Foundation, our research journal. He says:

It’s been a great role to have; proving that Chad’s is a place where we still value expertise, learning and conversation.

He was delighted to be given the opportunity to continue his studies at Chad’s this year through an MA in Economic and Social History. His thesis focuses on how ordinary people in the 16th, 17th and 18th Centuries argued with each other, and what this can tell us about early modern legalism. At this time ordinary people appealed to authorities locally – older, richer, male members of the parish – to resolve arguments. They also, understandably, tried to avoid long journeys to the local court. Thus, there existed a set of parish customs that stressed order and local reconciliation. We could call these customs an ‘alternative legal culture’; alternative, that is, to the more centralised court system.

The Elizabeth Griffiths Scholarship: The Revd Alec Griffiths, who celebrated 50 years as a priest in 2016, has very generously provided a scholarship fund at St Chad’s in memory of his late wife, Elizabeth. In the last few years the scholarship has been awarded to post-graduate students studying for a one-year taught or research Masters in the Faculty of Arts. Fr Alec trained for ordination at St Chad’s before parish ministry in Glasgow and Greenock, and then hospital chaplaincy in London. In retirement he lives in Largs.

Intern:NE Launch

On Monday 20th November 2017, staff and students at St Chad’s College were joined by the North East England Chamber of Commerce and leaders of the North East business community for the launch of our new regional graduate retention initiative, Intern:NE.

The talent and energy of Chad’s graduates is often unfortunately lost to the North East when the vast majority of these students leave the region to begin their careers, most often in the South East. The new Intern:NE program aims to challenge students’ assumptions that you can begin or progress your career only in the South East by connecting our current students with exciting opportunities in the North East business community.

Through engagement with a North East business or organisation via internships  graduates are more likely to consider working in the region after graduation. This helps the region to retain prized talent and energy, and gives North East businesses valuable early access to some of the most accomplished graduates in the UK.

The College is proud of its location and heritage in the North East, and is committed to contributing to the region’s economic and cultural success. Over the past six months, College staff have been building relationships with some of the most prestigious employers in the North East to secure offers of internships or work experience placements exclusively for students at St Chad’s. We were joined at the launch by partners, CEOs and Trustees of many of these employers, who had the opportunity to mix with and speak to our students.

James Ramsbotham, Chief Executive of the North East England Chamber of Commerce, addressed guests at the launch and said:

‘Improving our graduate retention rate is a key challenge for the North East. As a region, we are relatively successful at retaining students from the North East who go on to work here after graduation. However, we can do more to improve our attraction and retention of students from outside the region.

We know there are many great reasons to build your career in the North East, and we want to support businesses, particularly SMEs, to raise awareness of the opportunities they offer to graduates. The Intern:NE initiative developed by St Chad’s College at the University of Durham will help to address this issue by giving students an introduction to employers in the North East and providing valuable work experience.’

Chapel Choir sings Cathedral Evensong

On Monday 13th November the Chapel Choir sang evensong in the cathedral for the first time this academic year.

The choir and other members of College. It was great to see Canon Dr Margaret Masson in her new red Lay Canon robes, and we were delighted that the Dean of the Cathedral, Andrew Tremlett, who is also the College Rector, was able to attend the service.

The highlight of the service was undoutably the Vaughan Williams anthem: Lord, Thou hast been our refuge for choir, organ and trumpet, the final chords of which shook the building. Many thanks go to Tom Rickard, 3rd year Economics, for his trumpet playing and to Peter Swift, the College Organist, for playing the organ.

The rest of the music for the evening was:

Preces and Responses – Bernard Rose

Psalm 69 vv 1-4, 13-19, 31-37 – chant by J Battishill

Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis – Herbert Murrill

 

 

Alice Barber – Producer and Theatre Maker

Alice graduated from St Chad’s in 2016, having studied English Literature, and is currently working as a Theatre Producer across Yorkshire and the North West. She is currently the Resident Producer for two companies: Knaive Theatre and Front Room Productions. Knaive Theatre creates bold, controversial and political theatre and is currently touring the acclaimed Bin Laden: The One Man Show, while Front Room specialises in intimate site-specific productions. Most recently she has produced an outdoor version of Twelfth Night set on a Yorkshire farm, and later this year will produce an immersive production of A Christmas Carol that is to tour venues in Leeds, York, Bradford and Manchester. 

Earlier this year she took her first Arts Council funded project, Unsung, into Research and Development. Unsung explores the untold and under-acknowledged stories of four pioneering female figures from British history – Ada Lovelace, Sophia Jex-Blake, Lilian Bailey and Andrea Dunbar. She and the ensemble had two key objectives: to devise something that interrogated in a lively and modern way the underrepresentation of women in history, the theatre, and society at large, and to develop four complex female protagonists.

Research and Development Team for Unsung

By creating Unsung, they intend to question why these inspirational figures, and hundreds of others like them, are so absent from what Britain, as a nation, is taught of its history. In collaboration with the writer Lisa Holdsworth (Midsomer Murders, Waterloo Road), the show is undergoing further development at the moment, with the intention to tour regionally in 2018. 

The trailer for Unsung can be found here

Louise MacMorran – Acting Governor of St Helena

 Former MCR Secretary and current Head of the Governor’s Office, Louise MacMorran, was sworn in as Acting Governor of St Helena on Monday 30 October 2017.

Louise took the prescribed Oaths in the presence of the Sheriff of St Helena, Mrs Ethel Yon OBE, partner Dave Mothershaw, and colleagues, in the Governor’s Office, The Castle.

Whilst the role is only for the temporary absence of Her Excellency Governor Lisa Phillips, who departed the Island for a period of overseas business, it is great to see news of our Alumni, wherever they are and whatever they may be doing!

 

 

New College Fellow – Professor Bryan Morton CBE

On Tuesday evening, in the context of the Postgraduate Formal dinner, our newest College Fellow, Professor Bryan Morton CBE, was presented with his (very green) St Chad’s Foundation Fellow’s hood.

Before presenting Bryan with his hood, Dr Masson said: “We are honouring with our College’s highest award, our College Foundation Fellowship, someone who has made a significant contribution to Chad’s over a number of years. It is our way of saying thank you, because actually, when someone accepts a fellowship, the real honour is ours. It’s a way of saying: “this is someone we admire, and who is making a very distinguished contribution in a number of areas that we think are very important – someone in whose glory we want to bask, just a little”.

Dr Masson highlighted three reasons for St Chad’s decision to honour Bryan Morton in this way: first for his outstanding success as an entrepreneur and for his commitment to sharing his experience with Durham University and students of St Chad’s; second for his work in the healthcare industry, developing drugs to treat a range of terrible diseases and alleviate suffering all over the world; and finally St Chad’s is hugely grateful for Bryan’s generosity in supporting the College’s Joe Cassidy Scholarship Fund which helps to help ensure that no student with the talent is excluded from a Chad’s education because they cannot afford it.

Special guests at the dinner included the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Stuart Corbridge, the Dean of Durham Business School, Professor Susan Hart, President of the North East Chamber of Commerce, John McCabe, and a number of other North East business leaders and champions of enterprise.

It was a wonderful evening abounding in good conversation, great food, and new friendships. Not only was our newest College Fellow hooded and welcomed, but St Chad’s relationship with the University and with the North East was toasted and celebrated.

Alumni Choir in Leicester

On the weekend of 21st-22nd October, several of the St Chad’s College Choir Scholars joined the St Chad’s Alumni Choir for a weekend of singing at the prestigious Leicester Cathedral. Although the Scholars were very generously treated to a four-star hotel and a lovely meal, the weekend was no jolly and lots of hard work was achieved!

The student contingent

Having left Durham at 7am in a minibus for Leicester, upon the arrival of the Durham cohort, rehearsals started straight away led by Philip Drew. The repertoire for this weekend was a treat, featuring some great British choral classic such has Howell’s Collegium Regale and Stanford’s Beati Quorum Via. The choir sang two services: Choral Evensong on Saturday and a Eucharist Service on Sunday morning. Both services were a success, especially considering the short rehearsal time that all the members had together. Notably, the choir did very well to get to grips with pesky Psalm from Saturday’s evensong which was extremely long with difficult moments!

The choir felt very welcome at Leicester Cathedral by the staff and by the people of the parish. The whole weekend was highly enjoyable, and I would like to thank the Alumni for asking the scholar’s to join them at their reunion and also thank them for their extreme generosity! 

Catherine Bench

Third year, Music, Choral Scholar

 

Thanks to Philip Drew for directing, to Peter Swift for playing the organ, and to everyone who came and sang, or supported us!