English PhD students win awards at RSSC2021: An International Research Gathering

On 23rd of June 2021, we gathered online to celebrate the research carried out by Middlesex University researchers. 2021 marked the 10th year of the Research Students’ Summer Conference, with 120 presenters from research students and early career researchers from Middlesex overseas campuses, our Partner Institutions and our London campus.

More than 300 attendees and presenters registered for RSSC2021, from 29 countries. 32 prizes were presented by Dr Onatade to the best presentations and posters and the details of winners can be found here.

One of the prize winners for outstanding oral presentation was first year MPhil/PhD in English student Thanh Nguyen for her presentation on the ‘Effects of Metacognitive Reading Strategy Instruction on L2 Reading Comprehension and Motivation: A Meta-Analysis and An Empirical Investigation’. Congratulations also to second year MPhil/PhD in English student Thitinart Khamyod for her presentation: ‘From Verbal to Online Interactions: Requests in One-to-one Facebook Chats in Thai Educational Settings’ and to finalist PhD student Ramona Pistol for her presentation ‘Aesthetic experience in metaphorical comprehension’. Congratulations to all presenters and winners!

25 poster presentations and approximately 90 oral presentations were delivered, across three time slots of 8 parallel sessions each. It was a remarkable demonstration of the diversity of disciplines and the multidisciplinarity or research projects carried out in MDX Research Community: sports science, psychology and psychotherapy, English, performing arts, natural sciences, computer science, business and management, law and criminology, covid-19 related studies, organisational theology and theological studies, design, engineering and mathematics and so much more that can be viewed in the RSSC2021 Programme and Book of Abstracts.    

Our Vice-Chancellor Prof Nic Beech delivered the opening keynote speech, setting out the position of research in the University’s strategy and in the years ahead. MDX professional doctorate alumna Dr Raliat Onatade, Group Chief Pharmacist and Clinical Director for Medicines Optimisation at NHS Barts trust – who played a central role in setting up pharmacy services at the NHS Nightingale – gave the closing address. Raliat was introduced by Prof Hemda Garelick and another engaging conversation followed her inspiring and thought-provoking speech.  She talked about her journey as a researcher: making the transition from being a medical professional to a doctoral student, her approach to translating academic research into effective practice, and giving advice to early career researchers from her experience.

Find more about RSSC2021 here.

2021 Virtual Graduation and Graduation Awards

On the 15th of June 2021 we celebrated (virtually) the graduation of our fantastic class of 2021.

We will of course have the opportunity to participate in a fully-fledged graduation ceremony in the future on campus and will get to wear your graduation gown. For this online celebration, however, there was no dress code, and everyone was invited to bring along a brightly coloured drink of their choice.

At the party, English, Creative Writing and Journalism programmes announced their graduation PRIZES for academic achievement and best project.

The English graduation award winners are:

Outstanding Academic Achievement in English: Jodie Louise Hammond

Best Independent Project in English: Marisa Sonay Pavli

Each prize comes with a certificate and a generous voucher.

Huge congratulations to the two deserving winners and all out great 2021 English graduates!

MDXSU AWARDS 2021: Double win for BA English

Last Friday the winners of the 2021 MDXSU Awards were announced. BA English achieved not one but TWO impressive wins! These annual awards celebrate the extraordinary work and achievements of Middlesex University students and staff over the past academic year.

Student Voice Leader of the Year: Yasmin Al-Sahar 

This award recognises the work of a Student Voice Leader within each faculty who has spent the year working hard to make changes for students at Middlesex.   

Yasmin received a high number of nominations from her peers and staff due to her high-quality work and efforts towards nurturing a community within the faculty of Arts & Creative Industries. Her strong communication skills when sharing academic and industry updates were regular and accessible to all. Additionally, Yasmin received 100& completion rate on the NSS.

Academic Staff Member of the Year: Dr Adam Dalton 

This award recognises an outstanding member of academic or teaching staff within each Faculty who has had a positive impact on the learning and student experience. 

Adam received a high number of nominations from students sharing their positive experiences with him. As one nomination saw Adam as “a model of student-centered, innovative, and impactful teaching” and another saying “Without a doubt, Professor Dalton in this way impassions his students to pursue their dreams. He is a remarkable person above all, and by far the best educator I’ve known in my lifetime of learning”. His work has been impactful and deserving as the winner of Academic Staff Member of the Year for ACI.

Huge congratulations to Yasmin and Adam for their outstanding achievements! Thank you also to all the colleagues and students who have taken the time to submit their nominations.

You can check the winners in all categories here.

BA English student wins Fairtrade Poetry Competition

We are thrilled that our third-year BA English student Marisa with her poem ‘Mirage of Eden‘ won this year’s Fairtrade Competition.
‘FAIR PAY FOR FARMERS’ BY JENSON, AGED 9

This year’s Fairtrade fortnight celebration supported the awareness of Climate Change. Students submitted poetry or spoken word pieces applying in some way the concept of: ‘Your vision of the world you want for farmers and workers worldwide, and the planet we share’.

All shortlisted poems, including Marisa’s winning entry can be found here: https://haringeyunchained.com/haringey-unchained-and-creativityunleashed-editors-judge-2021-spoken-word-competition/

The judges felt that Marisa’s piece ‘Mirage of Eden‘ was a clever read in that it told a Climate change story in a realistic fairy tale way. The title alone, captivated the judges to want to know more and felt lured in during the read:

‘MIRAGE OF EDEN’ BY MARISA

To this vision I am bound:
the wasp buzz of a wave;
life and colour all around;
the blessings mother gave.
I am – choking – on dreams
of a rich, safe Eden –
a world serene at its seams,
uncut by cords of freedom.
Inhale fumes – exhale smoke –
a star – with wings
interrupts my hope –
and the – breath – it brings.
Fair trades and honest tongues,
sustainability will suffice.
Cemeteries of – uprooted lungs –
replaces paradise…
reward! – to those who stab-
at our womb –
and for those who tend, not grab,
the creatures, fruits, and bloom?
This rot – is in – my veins –
consume, consume, consume
we must – burn these chains
to kill – our barren doom.
Touch life beyond the computer,
rain and jungle dew,
a cleaner, greener future,
peace not just for the few.
My throat – burns
satisfaction slips my fingers
and to the past returns,
so only faith now lingers.
For libraries of celestial stories
Sun and Moon chase each other
Over unpolluted territories.
Tree nymphs will rediscover
their legs to dance and play
among skyscraper trees and towers.
Ink-free mermaids visit the bay
threading crowns of flowers,
never to know a plastic hell.
Fair costs and full cheeks
Nature, cast your spell!
Sung from mouths and beaks.
Imagine bellies full of berries,
imagine poverty, illness ended,
imagine trees alive with fairies,
imagine our earth, tended.

Marisa’s prizes includes interviews in print publications by Haringey Unchained, Russell Sage College in upstate New York and Barnet TV!

Congratulations also to second-year BA English student, Leonardo Simoes, whose poem ‘A Product of the Here and Now‘ was shortlisted. All the shortlisted poems from young people around the country have featured in the Fairtrade Foundation’s Youth Online Exhibition Hall: https://www.fairtrade.org.uk/choose-the-world-you-want/exhibition-hall/