I hope this message finds you well and that you are staying safe during Storm Eunice.
I have been most grateful for the dedication of all involved in the starting of semester 2. It is always a pleasure for me to see University activities build up as teaching returns, and I am most grateful to all who have worked directly and indirectly, within both academic and professional service departments, to make this possible. I have also been grateful for the continuing courtesy shown by all at the University during the current period of industrial action. You will have received my last email last week about this matter and I hope to be able to update you more fully when we hear more about developments at a national level, including from the Joint Negotiating Committee.
Bath becomes full partners in 4MOST
I am delighted that we have become a major consortium partner in 4MOST, a new super-powerful telescope facility in Chile. Congratulations to Professor Carole Mundell and her group for championing this important international partnership that is set to make an enormous contribution to astrophysics research over the coming years.
International Day of Women and Girls in Science
Friday last week was International Day of Women and Girls in Science. I am constantly inspired by those who work and study here at Bath and was pleased to read Professor Sarah Hainsworth’s blog published on the day, building on existing stories celebrating women in STEM. Of course, this is both a day to be proud of our colleagues, as well as an opportunity to ensure that talented female scientists know our University to be a place where they can thrive and which helps them succeed both whilst they are here and in their future careers.
Covid and health measures
Although most national Covid measures have lifted, it is still vital that we operate as safely as we can and look after one another over the weeks to come. Please remember:
- If you are holding an event, please conduct a risk assessment in a timely way; there is guidance and further information in our risk assessment library.
- Colleagues who have not yet been able to get fully vaccinated or boosted can use the NHS clinics on campus as walk-ins, without the need to use the student booking system.
- Take a rapid LFT test at least twice a week, before coming into University buildings. You can order them online for free; we await further information from Government about the ability of universities to distribute free LFT kits in future and will update you when we know more.
- Face coverings are still strongly recommended indoors, including when moving around and in teaching settings. Please read our guidance for full information.
I would also like to acknowledge the hard work of departments in continuing to respond to Covid, which does still add to our workload and affect our capacity. I also want to send my very best wishes to anyone who is currently poorly with Covid, or who is still suffering the effects of the virus, or who have family members affected. As we learn to live with Covid, we must still be mindful of those who may be struggling and to retain the real compassion we have demonstrated towards each other over the last two years.
At the Ahs showcase last month, I was deeply touched to read a thank you letter from a student to a member of our Security team. The Security staff member had played a game of noughts and crosses with the student on the other side of their door when they were self-isolating with Covid. It was clear that this meant a very great deal to both the student and their family. If it is true that people remember most how you make them feel, then it is clear that a great many people in our community have very much of which to be truly proud.
Dave McNulty inducted into Hall of Fame
I was honoured to participate in the induction of David McNulty into the Hall of Fame last week. Dave has overseen huge success as swim coach at the University’s Sports Training Village (STV) for the past 14 years. During this time, he has developed the British Swimming National Centre in Bath into one of the world’s leading training programmes. He has guided many British stars to Olympic, World, European and Commonwealth success, and it was wonderful that double Olympic Gold medallist and Bath student, Tom Dean, was also present to celebrate the occasion. Congratulations, Dave.
And finally, I would like to warmly congratulate Kate Robinson, University Librarian here at Bath, for becoming President of CILIP, the library and information association, as well as being appointed as a Board member of IATUL, the International Association of University Libraries.
With best wishes,
Professor Ian White
Vice-Chancellor and President