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Ziggurat - The e-Newsletter of the UEA Alumni Association November 2018 View in browser
Credit: Michael del Rosario
Featured Stories
Global Gathering Beijing 2018

Global celebrations 2018

Thanks to the wonderful efforts and enthusiasm of our volunteer hosts, there will have been 56 Global Gathering events held all around the world this autumn!

Alumni hosts from as far afield as Abuja, Melbourne, Tokyo and Vancouver gathered to celebrate the 55th birthday of the University, with events still to take place in several locations including Bogota, Dusseldorf, and Guangzhou.

All the photos and video sent in from the events can be found on our Facebook page and a selection are on our website.

Each year these events, organised by alumni, demonstrate the connection that the alumni community feel with the University, and provide the chance for former classmates and long lost friends to reunite, as well as the opportunity to make new friends.

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UEA Library

UEA Library at 50

As part of the celebrations marking the UEA Library’s 50th anniversary, the team has been gathering stories and memories from alumni, staff and students, which are being published on their UEA Library at 50 blog.

You can still get in touch by emailing or post using #UEALibrary50 if you want to share your story.

“I guess I was aware that the Library was brand new when I first started making use of it in October 1968. But since everything in the campus was new or nearly new it didn’t really make much impression. Of course, the fact the thick carpets that covered every floor gave off electric shocks throughout that first year – and for some time after – was another indicator of its newness if I’d cared to think about it.

“For me – and I think a number of my friends – the great virtue of the Library was that it offered a retreat, a sort of cocoon, from the harshness and strangeness of much of the university life that swirled around it. Here you could just sit – in welcome warmth – and focus on work.” Andrew (EAS 68)

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Christmas LCR 2018

We've got your Christmas plans sorted

It's getting closer to that time of year again and we're already starting to get into the festive spirit!

Why not get your friends together and come back to campus to celebrate on Saturday 15 December at the Christmas LCR?

BOOK Your Tickets  
News in Brief
UEA signs commitment to BME students and staff

A commitment, on the final day of Black History Month, to ensure that students and staff from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) backgrounds have the best experience possible while studying or working at UEA.

Public invited to learn more about social sciences at interactive festival

The University is hosting three interactive events at this year’s ESRC Festival of Social Science, giving members of the public a chance to participate in and contribute to studies at the forefront of social science.

UEA and Colombian researchers work together for sustainable peace

Researchers from UEA are part of a new programme that will address issues facing Colombia’s transition from conflict to peace.

More Stories
Momodou Jobu

Meet UEA’s newly appointed Muslim Chaplain

UEA has appointed alumnus Momodou Jobe as its new Muslim Chaplain.

Momodou is a research scientist by profession, who has previous experience working with students in a pastoral role. As newly appointed Chaplain, he will provide support to the University’s Muslim students as well as playing a key role in the planning and coordination of Islamic prayer provision on campus.

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London Lecture series 2019

UEA London Lectures 2019

The University is delighted to announce the programme for its 2019 London Lectures. The UEA London Lectures give you an opportunity to hear about current UEA research and to meet and reminisce with fellow alumni, all at the Regent Street Cinema in the heart of London.

The series kicks off on Thursday 24 January with a lecture from Prof George McKay, who describes his research as ‘cultural studies with a soundtrack’. He will draw on his work from the past decade looking at ways in which disability is represented, explored, performed and sung about in popular music, with examples from fascinating video and musical extracts.

Then on Thursday 28 February, Prof Anne-Marie Minihane will explore the health challenges that arise from increased life expectancy and will explain how our diets could hold the key to improved brain vitality in later life.

Join Dr Robert Ferdman for a journey into the cosmos on Thursday 28 March, as he reveals how observation of pulsars has shed important light on our understanding of the Universe – from testing Einstein’s theories, to probing extreme conditions that we could never hope to reproduce on Earth.

Finally, on Thursday 2 May, Prof Mark Zeitoun will contrast the idea of water as the basis of life with the evidence that it can often be a source of pain and misery – when it is used to exclude and preclude in the Congo, lubricate ethnic cleansing in the West Bank, drown villages in Sudan, or clear the killing fields in Lebanon and Iraq. The lecture will be preceded by a free screening of Merowe Dam: A Shattered Dream, featuring the research that Prof Zeitoun worked on with Dr Nada Ali and Dr Mohammed Jalal.

Read More ANd Book  
Dr Darrell Green

Local action: global impact

Dr Darrell Green, a Senior Research Associate at UEA, lost his friend Ben Morley at age 13 to a rare form of bone cancer called Ewing sarcoma. Seeing what Ben went through made Darrell determined to help understand and find a cure for childhood bone cancers, such as Ewing and osteosarcoma.

Big C funded Darrell’s PhD in molecular biology at UEA and, today, he conducts research into metastasis, which is how cancer cells learn to spread and develop into secondary tumours elsewhere around the body.

To help Darrell continue with his research, Big C has part-funded a crucial piece of equipment that will be of benefit across the Norwich Research Park. The ClearCell FX System isolates cancer cells that have been shed into the blood from tumours. Molecular analysis of these specific cells provides a much more relevant picture of the patient’s primary and secondary tumours.

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Careers event

Award nominations open for UEA talent celebration event

Has an outstanding UEA student undertaken a work placement, or volunteered for you or your organisation? If so, CareerCentral want to hear from you.

Nominations are open for awards which will be presented at CareerCentral’s UEA Talent Celebration event on 7 May 2019 at the Sainsbury Centre. The event will recognise and showcase excellence in student and business engagement.

The Most Supportive Employer Award is awarded to an employer who has provided students a paid opportunity to learn and excel in a supportive work place, and who has built links with education to support the next generation of employees; Most Supportive Voluntary Organisation Award is awarded to an organisation for providing volunteers with a valuable experience, excellent training, and support; the Outstanding Student Volunteer Award is to recognise a student who has shown dedication and enthusiasm through volunteering and has gone above and beyond to make a sustained impact; and the Outstanding Student Employee Award will be awarded to a student who has made a significant impact to your business as an employee.

Watch the video of the Employer Celebration Event run by CareerCentral this year for a taster of next year’s event.

Scholars' welcome event

UEA welcomes new scholarship recipients

The University opened its doors to welcome this year’s 51 new scholarship recipients at its annual scholars’ welcome event last month.

Many scholarships at UEA are supported by alumni and friends of the University across a vast range of subjects, offering talented students the opportunity to thrive. MA student Lauren Mooney (pictured above, LDC), is the recipient of the David Higham Scholarship (Prose), and she describes the impact that the scholarship, and the donors, has made.

“Trying to save in London while earning just above living wage was an uphill battle. As much as I toyed with the idea of a postgraduate loan, it felt like taking a problem and kicking it down the road, where it would be waiting to trip me up in a year or two. Then, I ended up on UEA’s website. I barely read about the course; I was too pragmatic and too cynical to get emotionally invested in something I didn’t think I could have. Instead, I went straight to the fees and funding section - and found so many scholarships listed.

“I received a scholarship for my undergraduate degree, which made it possible for me to go to university without ever having to ask my parents for a penny - a life-changing feeling for a first-generation student. It was seeing those scholarships listed that made me think that this is a place that might want me as I am. It made me think maybe it was possible, or worth throwing my hat in the ring, at least. That you support people to attend this course is part of the reason I applied in the first place; that you supported me is the reason I am able to be here now. I was overjoyed to get my offer, convinced I would have to ‘make it work somehow’, but I honestly don’t know how I would have managed it without this scholarship. I’m more grateful than I can ever say.”

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Norwich Science Festival

Record turn-out for this year’s Norwich Science Festival

Nearly 100,000 people visited The Forum in Norwich over the October half-term, to listen to a variety of free talks and have a go at some hands-on science as part of the Norwich Science Festival.

Now in its third year, the Festival provides a unique platform for UEA scientists to engage the public with their research. This year, more than 100 UEA staff and students joined colleagues from across the Norwich Research Park, plus external organisations and charities, to deliver talks, workshops and interactive activity stands across the nine days of the Festival.

Vice-Chancellor Prof David Richardson said, “I’m very proud of UEA’s involvement in the Norwich Science Festival and I would like to thank the many students and staff who helped make it such a success. The Festival was engaging, thought-provoking, great fun and a brilliant way of showcasing the work scientists in Norwich are doing to build a better future for us all.”

UEA student Sarah Barnsley, who is currently working towards her PhD in the School of Biological Sciences, developed an activity to communicate her research on pollinators and precision farming. Visitors to her activity stand decorated cupcakes using ingredients from plants that rely on pollinators for successful fertilisation, while discussing with Sarah and her team the value of pollinators, and how to help them by planting a range of flowers in their gardens at home.

Speaking about her experience at the Festival, Sarah said, “The vast majority of people who passed by the stand were eager to learn and ask questions. It was incredibly busy and as a result we got the research message across to a lot of people, which was very encouraging.”

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Children's Christmas Lecture 2018

UEA Christmas Lectures for Children: Mudlarks and monarchs

They are as much of a festive tradition as mince pies and snowball fights and they’re back for 2018 – it’s the UEA Christmas Lectures for Children!

Join us as we embark upon a journey with Dr Brian Reid from the School of Environmental Sciences, on which we will explore the incredible services provided by soils. Along the way we will squelch our way through different types of mud, experiment with soils, measure soil properties, quantify soil processes, and discover that soil is alive.

And travel back to 1578 with Prof Matthew Woodcock from the School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing, to discover how the people of Tudor Norwich prepared the city for a royal visit and how they went about welcoming Queen Elizabeth I when she arrived in our fine city. If you think that modern royal events look lavish and spectacular, then think again!

The UEA Christmas Lectures are recommended for children aged seven and over. Tickets are free but will book up fast – book online now to secure your seats. If you can’t make it on the day don’t forget that the lecture will be live-streamed on our website.

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Choir and Orchestra of the University of Caen

UEA Choir and Symphony Orchestra perform Mozart’s Great Mass

UEA Choir and Symphony Orchestra will perform one of Mozart’s most celebrated pieces, as well as music from the nineteenth century’s greatest prodigy and a contemporary master, on Thursday 22 November at 7.30pm at St Andrew’s Hall, Norwich.

Massing more than 200 performers on stage, comprising students, staff and members of the local community, the choir and orchestra will perform Mozart’s extraordinary combination of wedding present to his new wife and peace offering to his dubious father, the ‘Great Mass’ in C minor K427. Mendelssohn’s youthfully dynamic Overture in C major Op. 24, and New Yorker Torke’s imaginative Bright Blue Music complete a vivid programme.

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Eylem Atakav

Global leadership role for UEA academic

Dr Eylem Atakav, Senior Lecturer in Film and Television Studies has been elected as Chair of the Teaching, Learning and Scholarship Knowledge Community at NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

Dr Atakav, who is also Associate Dean International (Arts and Humanities), is the first British academic to be elected into this role. She will take up the three-year term beginning on 1 January 2019.

NAFSA is the world's largest non-profit association dedicated to international education and exchange. NAFSA's 10,000 members are located at more than 3,500 institutions worldwide, in over 150 countries.

Dr Atakav teaches courses on women and film; women, Islam and media; and Middle Eastern media. She directed Growing Up Married – an internationally acclaimed documentary about forced marriage and child brides in Turkey. Her film was a selected feature at the 2017 NAFSA Annual Conference film festival held in Los Angeles, which attracted more than 10,000 international educators from around the globe.

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Champagne in Essex

UK wine-making areas to rival Champagne revealed

Research from the University has identified areas of the UK which could rival the Champagne region of France.

Climate and viticulture experts have identified nearly 35,000 hectares of prime viticultural land for new and expanding vineyards - much of it in Kent, Sussex and East Anglia.

Prof Steve Dorling, from UEA’s School of Environmental Sciences, said: “English and Welsh vineyards are booming, and their wine is winning international acclaim. This summer’s heatwave has led to a record grape harvest and a vintage year for English and Welsh wine, prompting great interest in investment and land opportunities.”

Lead author Dr Alistair Nesbitt said: “Interestingly, some of the best areas that we found are where relatively few vineyards currently exist such as in Essex and Suffolk - parts of the country that are drier, warmer and more stable year-to-year than some more established vineyard locations.”

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Inaugural lecture series

UEA inaugural lectures continue

The autumn UEA inaugural lectures continue this month, with talks exploring antibiotic resistance, counter-terrorism and international development by some of UEA’s newest professors.

Many of the antibiotics in use today are derived from natural products made by bacteria and fungi, but their misuse in medicine and agriculture is now leading to widespread drug resistance. In Prof Matt Hutching’s inaugural lecture on Tuesday 13 November, he’ll explain what he and his fellow scientists at UEA are learning from previously undiscovered examples of antibiotic production in nature, including the small but mighty leafcutter ant.

It's hard to imagine our social, political and cultural existence free from terrorism and counter-terrorism. In his inaugural lecture on Thursday 20 November, Prof Lee Jarvis will draw on examples from parliamentary debate, activist campaigns, dissident art, media commentary and academic critique as he discusses how, where and when we should challenge the paradigm.

Then, on Tuesday 4 December, Prof Laura Camfield will give an insight into her career in international development and discuss some of the big questions that a research career in this area throws up. What counts as knowledge? Whose voices should we listen to? And most importantly, what really matters to people in countries characterised as ‘developing’?

Inaugural lectures recognise and celebrate the promotion of UEA academics to the position of professor, while giving audiences the chance to hear about their research and its impact on society. These lectures are free and there's no need to book; simply turn up on the night, or watch live on our website.

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Pharmacology event

Pharmacology careers conference

If you have worked or have experience in pharmaceutical research and development, regulation, or publishing for scientific journals/articles, UEA wants to hear from you.

A pharmacology careers conference is being launched to help establish relationships in the sector, and to provide students with an insight into the possibilities open to them after graduating.

Aimed at both business and pharmacology students, the event will be held on Monday 4 February from 5-7pm, with refreshments provided. As a speaker, you will be expected to deliver a 10 minute presentation concerning your experience and career path which will be followed by a brief Q&A with students. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Emily Bone by emailing

Revision bootcamp

Could you help prepare GCSE and A level maths students for their exams?

The University is looking for teachers who could run revision bootcamp sessions on campus. You will be responsible for designing and delivering a 2-day subject-specific revision programme that’s linked to the curriculum to ensure inclusion of core content, alongside development of general revision technique.

Activities at the bootcamp will include working with students in groups and on a one-to-one basis to develop their maths skills and confidence, as well as monitoring and reporting on their progress during the sessions.

If you are a qualified maths teacher with a year minimum experience of teaching in school, please get in touch.

Read more and apply  
Masters level CPD

Master’s level CPD for teachers and educationalists

The MA Educational Practice and Research aims to build on participants' existing interests and expertise, and is specially designed for school teachers, further and higher education lecturers and other practitioners working in the UK who wish to extend their continuing professional development activities through Master’s level study.

The course starts in January each year and is offered on a part-time basis. Participants can study for up to three years to complete the full MA. There is also opportunity to apply for Accreditation for Prior Learning that could significantly reduce study time.

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PhD funding

Bring your research to life

The University's Faculty of Science are offering five studentships to support PhD projects in mathematics, computing, chemistry, pharmacy, physics and engineering. To be considered for the studentships, candidates are encouraged to make their application by Monday 26 November.

The studentships are funded for three years and comprise home/EU fees, an annual stipend of £14,777, and £1,000 per annum to support research training.

Find Out More  
Elisabeth Frink

Elisabeth Frink: Humans and Other Animals

This autumn, the Sainsbury Centre is hosting a major new exhibition of Suffolk-born artist Elisabeth Frink.

Elisabeth Frink: Humans and Other Animals features over 150 works by the artist, and will be the largest showing of Frink’s work in 25 years. The exhibition will explore Frink’s enduring preoccupation with human and animal forms and the symbiotic relationship between them.

Shown alongside Frink's highly expressive work are pieces by artists including Pablo Picasso, Alberto Giacometti and Louise Bourgeois, creating juxtapositions and highlighting stylistic connections.

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Save the date #EJ2019

The Global Environmental Justice group are excited to announce the 2019 Environmental Justice conference, on the 2 - 4 July 2019 at UEA.

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What's On

Language classes at UEA

October to December (autumn)
January to March (spring)
April to June (summer)

Learning a language at UEA couldn't be easier. With a great reputation in the field of languages, the University tutors are friendly and approachable, giving you a positive learning experience.

The University language programme run classes three times a year, on campus.
For more information please contact

Grapes of Wrath / The Caucasian Chalk Circle

Tuesday 4 December – Saturday 8 December, 7pm
Drama Studio, UEA
Ticket price vary

The School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing presents ‘Exodus’, allowing audiences to see two iconic plays wrestle with power, refuge and family.

Final year drama students will produce and perform two epic works of dramatic literature, set during the 20th century but inspired by legends of antiquity - Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, adapted by Tim Baker, and The Caucasian Chalk Circle by Bertolt Brecht, Translated by Frank McGuiness. The studio space is being reconfigured so that the plays can be presented in the round, offering audiences the chance to experience multiple perspectives on these increasingly relevant stories.

Christmas Old and New

Sunday 9 December, 6.30pm
St George's Church, Tombland, Norwich

UEA Chamber Choir will perform a selection of Christmas music spanning five centuries.

The 35-strong chamber choir, under the direction of UEA Choirmaster Tom Primrose, will guide us through an eclectic selection from medieval carols to modern poems, from the well-known to the undiscovered.

Highlights from the programme will include Judith Weir’s exciting Illuminare Jerusalem, Pierre de la Rue’s evocative Gaude Virgo, and Tomás Luis de Victoria’s powerful and intense O Magnum Mysterium. The chamber choir will also give a rare performance of Alan Rawthorne’s setting of Hardy’s The Oxen, and motets by Heinrich Schütz, and Samuel Scheidt, as well as some better-known Christmas favourites.

The concert is free to attend and all are welcome.


In the past month the University has sadly been informed of the death of the following alumni and former staff:

Matthew Baynes (EAS80)

Patricia Hollis, Baroness of Heigham, former Dean of the School of English and American Studies (1988 to 1990) 
An obituary has been written for Baroness Hollis which can be found here online.

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