This is our third KPA Weekly Roundup - our apologies, we have had some trouble with our software that allows us to put subtitles over the video. Instead, we have written audio descriptions of each video underneath each file! We will work to correct the error, but wanted to share these with you in the meantime!
Our first check in is from Amy Blaney, our current student trustee! She will be updating you on what her week in isolation has consisted of, what work she has been getting up to, and to let you know that our KPA bursary is still open for applications!
["Hi, I’m Amy and for those of you that dont know me, I am the current student trustee for the KPA. I am here to give you a little round-up of my week this week!
So I have been doing a little bit of my PhD work and trying to vaguely stick to my study routine. What I tend to do is set myself one task for the day, like reading a book chapter or an article. If I feel like I want to continue after that then I will, but if I don't, I will go and do something else. These are strange times that we find ourselves in, so it is absolutely okay to go and do something else!
I have been doing a lot of yoga and have been following an online video called Yoga with Adriene. She has quite a few playlists, and I have been following one called ‘Home’ which is an introduction to yoga.
I have also been getting back into running. I used to do a lot of running but I developed shin splints in my left leg, so I had to take a break! I have also picked up the Zombies run couch to 5k app on my phone to start getting back into running again. This is really good fun because it tells you a story that is all about a zombie outbreak, as you are getting back into your running as well. So I would recommend that for anyone who wants to try and get outside!
I have also been reading! I have been reading quite a bit of the women’s prize shortlist. I finished Maggie O’Farrell’s Hamnet last night! I really really enjoyed it, an absolutely brilliant book! Would definitely recommend checking it out!
That has been about it - other than eating the Easter chocolate, hence the running. So there hasn’t been a huge amount else!
Oh, before I go though, I do want to remind everybody, that the KPA Bursary is still open! So you can still apply to the KPA bursary, we have not closed that yet - and we would really love you to do so! So if you are starting to look forward to things that you want to do, for your studies, after, we are out of lockdown, then go ahead and check out the website. All of the details of applying can be found on our website.
So until next time, I hope that you are all staying safe and well, and taking care. Stay indoors, look after yourselves, and we will hopefully see you at some KPA events soon! Bye!"]
Our second check in is with Katie, your President, who will be updating you on University communications. Particularly on the new PGR guidelines issued by the University late yesterday afternoon and updates to work around PGT Students.
[Hi everyone, so I am just going to give you a quick update on University communications. So, obviously the PGR guidelines were released by the University yesterday in the late afternoon. I was hoping it was going to be sooner, but it wasn't - however, we now have at least something. So it very much appears as though they are going to be working on a case by case basis. I think in the first instance you probably will want to get in touch with your supervisors, who will have those conversations with the heads of schools. Obviously they are looking at opportunities for extensions and putting things on freeze, so stopping tuition fees etc, dependent on your case. It seems as though its very much a "pressing pause" sort of situation. But I am collating some feedback so if you have any issues with the policy or a concern about anything, please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Just to give me a clearer idea of how this is likely to impact our current PGR students. I am also already drafting an email to your PGR reps, so please talk to them if you have any concerns. I think that a collaborative approach is the best way to deal with things now. Also please talk to the committee, if you have any concerns. I can draft up these concerns and share them with senior management. If you have any further concerns, get in touch with the Keele Doctoral Academy as they may be able to offer support on an individual level. So please let me know your thoughts. I have already had a few emails. I will be able to gather concerns and feedback to senior leadership.
In terms of PGT students, I have shared your concerns with the Education Committee, about what extensions look like and the process of applying for them. How this may also create a detriment to your wellbeing. So we are looking at what extensions look like and the process of applying for them. They have also adapted the hardship fund so that it is much easier and smoother to apply in light of covid-19. Your wellbeing concerns have also been passed on to the directorate of student academic services and support. So if you have any more queries, please do let me know. I hope to share some further explanation and updates as soon as they are available.
In terms of the KPA, we currently have our elections happening at the moment. Voting closes at 5pm today so please do vote and shape your union. Your e-voting cards should have been circulated to your email addresses. If you have not received this please do get in touch. We held a virtual Hustings on Wednesday which was very interesting as we have never had one in this virtual space before. Those videos have been put up on our website so you will be able to access those. So please do cast your vote before 5pm - you really do have the power to shape your student union.
I believe you have heard from Amy this morning who has shared some insights on her week. We will continue to do these weekly check ins and updates about University communications to keep you in the loop!