Weekly update from the Vice-Chancellor - 21/05/21

Posted in: Weekly Update

Dear colleague,

I hope this message finds you well and that you are able to benefit from the further easing of restrictions that we have seen earlier this week.

National Student Survey

I’d like to start by thanking all those involved in administering and promoting the National Student Survey this year. Appreciating this exercise is a lot of work even in a ‘normal’ year, I would like to underline my gratitude given the extraordinary circumstances in which we find ourselves. Now the survey has closed, I understand the response rate for our students is around 76% which is very good, and we hope the results themselves will also be positive when they are released in July.

Cybersecurity: an important reminder

Recent events have shown that phishing and other cybersecurity threats like ransomware attacks are on the increase. Universities are a target for those who want to steal sensitive information, from personal information to research data.

The impact of cyber-attacks can be significant with financial loss, capture of personal and business data, IT network outages, reputational damage and fines from the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Please be vigilant, particularly if you receive an unexpected email, asking for personal information or designed to make you concerned or take urgent action. Do take particular care to check who the email is from and don’t open attachments if you’re unsure of the source. Here is a reminder of some concrete steps we can all take:

  • Use the Report Message button if you suspect an email is fraudulent; in Outlook, this is located at the top right-hand side of your screen and you can select the category that your email falls into.
  • Please read our guide on identifying phishing scams and fake emails.
  • Please complete our information security training.
  • Avoid sharing sensitive information by e-mail; use OneDrive or Teams instead, or password protect documents if there is no alternative to using an attachment.

It is so important we safeguard our data and our intellectual property so please make sure you remain vigilant in the coming weeks.

New senior appointments

We are building the capabilities in our senior team to be able to deliver our new strategy, which we expect to be communicating more on next month. I am delighted that Council have endorsed the appointment of Dr Cassie Wilson as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Student Experience, an important development and recognition of the success she has had in the Vice-President (Student Experience) role over the last two years.

We are progressing well with recruiting to our other PVC roles and have decided to split the responsibilities in the current role of Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) into two elements. I am delighted that Professor Jonathan Knight has agreed to continue leading the enterprise element, alongside his academic work, in a new role of Vice-President (Enterprise). They will both take on these new positions in August this year.

Bath Master’s Experience

My sincere thanks to all those who have been involved with the Bath Master’s Experience this week. This new initiative seeks to enhance our outreach to prospective postgraduate taught students and I understand these events have been very well attended. Congratulations to all involved.

Institution of Civil Engineers' award

I was delighted to hear that Professor Emeritus Geoff Hammond (Mechanical Engineering/I.SEE), has been awarded the Institution of Civil Engineers' 2021 James Watt Medal for work to put forward and analyse ways in which the UK could transition to using more low-carbon energy, particularly in transport and as electricity for heating. I would like to congratulate Professor Hammond and his collaborators on this well-deserved accolade.

Sporting success

Finally, my congratulations to Bath-based athletes on their recent successes. As you may have seen, Bath-based swimmers at the European Championships have now won six medals. Great Britain women, including alumna Anna Hopkin, won the 4x100m freestyle relay, with Freya Anderson bringing the team home for their historic Gold in a new British record time. Freya also won bronze in the 200m freestyle and joined Tom Dean and James Guy to win the mixed 4x200m freestyle, while Tom and James swam with Matt Richards to win Silver in both the Men’s 4x100m freestyle and Men’s 4x200m freestyle. A GB quartet featuring Anna Hopkin and James Guy won gold and shattered the European record to win the 4x100m mixed medley relay.

Alumnus Kate French achieved a Gold medal and Tom Toolis a Silver for Pentathlon GB at the 2021 UIPM World Cup Final in Hungary.

Congratulations also to Michael Taylor for winning a silver medal at the 2021 World Triathlon Para Series event in Yokohama, Japan at the weekend.

Team Bath Netball also guaranteed a slot in the 2021 Superleague semi-finals on 26 June with matches to spare, with a win over Surrey Storm last weekend, the team’s 15th from 16 matches so far. Congratulations to all.

With best wishes,

Professor Ian White
Vice-Chancellor and President

Posted in: Weekly Update


  • (we won't publish this)

Write a response