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October 15th 2017 Breaking the Silence

The University of Cambridge has launched a campaign to promote zero tolerance of sexual misconduct.

Called ‘Breaking the Silence – Cambridge speaks out against sexual misconduct’, the campaign will highlight a range of new prevention, support and reporting measures coming into effect in 2017.

It launched on October 24th with a new website and film showing CUSU’s women’s officer Lola Olufemi, who graduated from Selwyn this summer, and senior leaders including Vice-Chancellor Professor Stephen Toope advocating zero tolerance of all forms of harassment.

The website www.breakingthesilence.cam.ac.uk gives contact points for help, advice and support as well as setting out expectations around mutual respect and consideration and the zero tolerance approach to sexual misconduct. Staff and students are also given information about the university, college and external reporting options via the website.

The campaign has been developed by CUSU, the university and colleges and will be supported on social media using the hashtag #breakingthesilence.

A number of colleges, including Selwyn, are piloting the Intervention Initiative, a staff-facilitated bystander training programme. This aims to equip those who may witness harassment to step in and intervene in a safe and effective way. Studies have shown sexual harassment dropping by significant levels on US university campuses where the programme has been introduced.

Selwyn alumna Lola Olufemi as she is seen in the campaign film.

October 2nd 2017 Hugh and Us

The actor Hugh Laurie visited Selwyn on September 25th and took part in a question and answer session with students. Hugh is a Selwyn alumnus (SE 1978) who studied archaeology and anthropology, and he is now an Honorary Fellow of the college.

There was a packed Master’s Lodge for his session with current Selwynites. Hugh talked about his family connection with Selwyn: his father, an Olympic gold medallist, studied here – as did his brother. He spoke about his rowing – he was in the 1980 Boat Race – and how during his time in Cambridge he moved into acting and writing, and met Stephen Fry.

He also talked about the roles he’s played – moving from comedy to drama, though he said he thought there was a lot of humour in the series ‘House’; and about how pleased he is that today’s students also enjoy his comedy from two or three decades ago. He finally mentioned that he’s back in a recording studio later this year to make another album as a musician.


October 2nd 2017 Students from home and away

Selwyn’s new students took part in the matriculation photograph in Old Court on October 2nd to mark the start of the academic year. Freshers were formally welcomed the previous afternoon by the Master and Senior Tutor, and this week they have induction sessions in the college and across the university.

Most of our 123 new undergraduates are from the United Kingdom, but we now have the full list of nationalities which shows the global reputation of the university and the college. Countries represented in addition to Britain are Australia, Austria, China, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Italy, New Zealand, Romania, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden and the USA. Of the 94 UK students, 71% went to state-maintained schools.  

Our new graduates represent an even greater range of countries: the United States, Azerbaijan, Italy, South Africa, Netherlands, Spain, Mexico, Ireland, China, Lebanon, Latvia, Germany, Cyprus, Turkey, Singapore, Spain, Belgium, Hungary, India, Norway, France, Canada, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, Austria, South Korea, Syria and New Zealand. They joined together for the first time in their matriculation dinner in Hall on September 30th.

We wish them all every success in their time at Selwyn.


September 13th 2017 Language Centre

Selwyn has a tradition in Japanese studies through its former Master, Professor Richard Bowring, and also retired Fellow Haruko Laurie. We’re therefore particularly pleased to welcome Dr Vicky Young to the Fellowship this autumn. She is the newly-appointed University of Cambridge Kawashima Lecturer in Japanese literature and culture.

Vicky completed her undergraduate degree at Trinity Hall, holds an MA in Japanese Cultural Studies from Birkbeck College, University of London, and received her PhD from the University of Leeds in 2016. Her doctoral thesis focuses on the writings of Sakiyama Tami, Yi Yang-ji, and Tawada Yoko: three writers whose work represents her broader interests in Okinawan, resident Korean, and ‘transborder’ literature respectively. 

The college now has a considerable strength in modern languages. There are Selwyn Fellows or bye-fellows in German, Italian, Russian, Spanish and French – and we’re delighted to strengthen our links with the Faculty of Asian and Middle East Studies. Vicky Young will be formally installed as a Selwyn Fellow at the start of October.

August 28th 2017 Who’s next in line?

Our freshers arrive at the end of September, and in the past few days we’ve confirmed the places of those who’ve been accepted – and they’re now getting all the information they need about the new academic year.

So here’s what we know about our 2017 undergraduate intake. There will be 123 of them – 62 men and 61 women. Of the UK students, 94 in total, around 70% went to state schools. 12 of our new students come from the EU (up 1 on last year); and 17 come from overseas (up 3 on last year). The countries represented in addition to Britain are Australia, Austria, China, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Italy, New Zealand, Romania, Singapore, Sweden and the USA. 

We look forward to welcoming them all to Selwyn.

August 10th 2017 Brilliant Prospects

Selwyn has an extensive outreach programme to show young people from all backgrounds that Cambridge could be for them. We visit schools across the United Kingdom, and we host a number of groups who explore the college and the city. Much of the activity is focused around years 11 and 12, but we also welcome younger children for their first experience of what a university is like.

This summer we particularly enjoyed meeting 36 Year 5 pupils from Bonnygate Primary School and Cranbrook Primary School (both in Essex) and Dersingham Primary School in East London. The pupils were here at Selwyn in association with the Brilliant Club for their ‘launch’ trip to mark the beginning of a Scholars’ Programme where they have weekly tutorials and produce a final research assignment. Our photo shows some of the children from Dersingham outside the college.

Read more about the Brilliant Club here: http://www.thebrilliantclub.org/. There’s more information about our access and outreach work online: http://www.sel.cam.ac.uk/prospective-students/undergraduate/access-outreach/.

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