Tag Archives: Front-Page

‘Is Voluntourism Ethical?’

On Monday evening, as part of our ‘Perspectives’ lecture series, Chad’s was delighted to invite DUCK and COCO Charity as well as students from all over the university and members of the public to discuss the topic ‘Is Voluntourism Ethical?’

Many people venture all over the world to volunteer and this can provide much-needed support to communities. But can this also result in a debilitating reliance? Is it sometimes even damaging?  Should we be travelling abroad when we could be volunteering locally instead?  Will the help last a lifetime or is it a temporary fix?

It was fantastic to see so many people engage and collaborate in exploring such thought provoking questions and thank you to all the speakers for attending. 

 

Celebrating Chad’s Women at the Ladies’ and Friends’ Formal

Last night at ‘Ladies’ and Friends’ formal’ we marked 30 years since women were first admitted as students to St Chads.  Thank you to our guest of honour, Chad’s alumna Sherin Gerami (who is the first woman to be permitted to represent Iran in the Triathlon) for such a motivational talk.  Your work is so inspirational and really encompasses our Chad’s ethos.

Dr Margaret Masson, our (first female) Principal, gave a brief account of the history of women being admitted in 1988.  She also paid tribute to the many female members of staff who have enabled the College to run from day-to-day since its founding in 1904 and expressed our gratitude to current female members of staff – Vicki, Linda, Catherine and Lesley – who were guests at the formal.  At the end of the meal, Julia Atherley, co-chair of Chad’s FemSoc  invited guests to contribute to ‘A Way Out’, an outreach and prevention charity which aims to engage, empower and equip vulnerable and excluded women, families and young people to live lives free from harm, abuse and exploitation and to reduce life limiting choices and behaviour.  We hope that everyone attending the formal had a great time celebrating the ladies and friends of St Chad’s…

 

 

JCR exec husts

The JCR exec husts are well under way now.  Congratulations to everyone who has run for a position; as always in Chad’s, this year’s candidates have been very strong and the husts have been a pleasure to watch, with many thought provoking topics being discussed.  With each new post elected, it’s exciting to see the new executive committee gradually emerging, and getting ready to lead their JCR through the next year.  During these times of change it’s reassuring to see Chad’s students come together, to strive towards their goals and to embrace this dynamic environment.

Chad’s Christmas Panto

Chad’s is well and truly in the Christmas spirit and what better way to kick off the festive season than with the pantomime.  Completely student led, each year the pantomime showcases the wonders of Chad’s and its exec. Congratulations to the cast who put on such a fantastic show on Friday night and had everyone in the Quad crying with laughter.

   

Bishop David Stancliffe

On Friday, St Andrew’s Day, David Stancliffe, St Chad’s Fellow (and former Bishop of Salisbury) celebrated the 50th anniversary of his priesting, and the 25th of his being ordained bishop. David  presided at a Eucharist at the shrine of St Cuthbert in Durham Cathedral. A number of Chadsians (including our chaplain, David Rushton) were delighted to share the occasion.

Postgraduate formal and MCR research forum

It was so great to see so many postgraduates at Thursday’s formal. Here at Chad’s we aim to celebrate every common room and what better way to do that than with some delicious food and wonderful company. At this time of year it is easy to get wrapped up in work but it was lovely to see so many 4th years and postgraduates, as well as guests, enjoying the evening.

The formal followed the MCR research forum. This week’s presentations were on two interesting topics: Claire Cooper spoke about nature based solutions to urban resilience and Matt Shahin Richardson discussed his research on the way Islamic State has used Twitter. Thank you to both for delivering such interesting topics, and for everyone who attended and asked such excellent questions.

Novice Cup

This weekend brought Durham’s annual Novice Cup, in which all college novices compete for the winning title. On the first day, crews have a time trial of 800m on the racecourse with a 360 degree spin in the middle. On the second day, depending on their time, crews are pitched against another in a head race. The weekend saw over 40 crews race with one another. It was a weekend full of splashes, crabs, some broken boats, but, mostly, team spirit. It is events like these which truly reflect the teamwork and effort contributed by not only crew members, but also coaches, the Boat Club exec, and beyond. It’s an opportunity for Chad’s ethos to be represented, it shows all members of the Boat Club, regardless of experience, pulling together to ensure a rewarding weekend was had by all.

Chad’s was lucky enough to have three excellent times, with the novice men’s crew finishing 4th, and the women’s crews finishing 15th and 34th respectively. It’s been a great weekend for St Chad’s College and our Boat Club. It’s fantastic that the novices get the chance to participate in this event so early into the academic year; and so early into their rowing careers! What’s also so rewarding about the weekend is seeing how far last year’s novices have progressed: now senior crews are focusing on WeHORR and HORR, both 8 kilometre head races in March which will take us down to the Thames. Who knows where the novices will be this time next year; a huge well done to all involved.

St Chad’s – volunteering in South Africa

What’s more terrifying? A cheetah 5 meters away from you or teaching 50 13 year olds? We ponder this whilst we recover from leading a 3 hour maths lesson at 8am on a Saturday morning. (Yes, 8am lectures, one thing Keiskammahoek and Durham University now have in common). But our time in South Africa did not begin here.

As three students, weary from a 10 and half hour flight, stumbled out of Port Elizabeth airport they were met by a knight in shining armour, Tim Bernard. Tim is a grizzled veteran of the South African education system (though he is not yet 51, Happy Birthday for Tuesday Tim!) and he would be our primary life support as we found our feet in South Africa. One could say we had a gentle start, braais, beaches and bitches (shout out to Molly, Tim’s dog). Tim and his wife Michelle gave a great insight into both the history and culture surrounding South Africa and the expectations upon us on the classroom.

By Sunday we were back in a small town dominated by a large Church and a university, yes we were back in Durham or something quite like it – Grahamstown (soon to be renamed Makanda – locals are joking that the government wanted to tie the town to Wakanda of the Black Panther films).

The first job was to learn isiXhosa. We bet you pronounced that wrong, we are still learning to perform an ‘aspirated lateral click’ to give but one example.

Wednesday and Thursday mornings saw our first taste of teaching. We observed some incredible teachers who showed us how it could be done, but our first attempts were perhaps less than inspiring, Ermos forgot what a verb was, Andy let a cow loose in his classroom and Sarina somehow lost the number between 7 and 9 – I would ‘eight to be her.

Fortunately, Tim’s son Eric took pity on us and rewarded our efforts with a game drive. This is where the cheetah became involved, we got a once in a lifetime opportunity to be next to a cheetah and him not want to bite our heads off, thanks to Steve the Wildebeest for taking one for the team.

After that it was time to go to St Matthew’s, where we will be spending the remaining 6 weeks volunteering. The drive here was rather uneventful, for once, no pedestrians were in danger from Andy’s driving, no passengers were in danger from Ermos’ and no driveways were in danger from Sarina’s driving.

Having met the staff and already started teaching here we are all incredibly excited for what the next 6 weeks will bring. Not missing you guys at all, for the final time Mum, I’m fine! (from Ermos)