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Public Engagement at Manchester


The Public Engagement blog is a forum to share views, thoughts, feedback and generally chat about how the University of Manchester interacts with the public.

Join the ReachOut Leadership Programme (paid roles)

ReachOut is a mentoring charity. We work with young people from disadvantaged communities to help them achieve their potential and go on to lead good, happy and successful lives. Our Project Leaders lead a ReachOut project for one academic year.

We are looking for students from The University of Manchester to join the Reachout programme. 
ReachOut are running two online information sessions for individuals interested in applying tobecome part of the ReachOut Leadership Development Programme 2021-22. The sessions willinclude more details about the role and what we’re looking for in an ideal candidate!

Book your ticket below:

What is a ReachOut Project?
ReachOut projects are made up of weekly sessions with young people aged 9-16. Sessions consistof the same 10-16 mentees and 10-16 mentors each week who meet to take part in characterbuilding activities. Mentors support their mentee to build their confidence and raise aspirations. Project Leaders plan and deliver these sessions each week providing support to both mentors and mentees.

What does the role entail?

  • Delivering a weekly mentoring project in London, Greater Manchester or Liverpool (all sessions are currently being delivered online but will return to face-to-face once it becomes safe to do so)
  • Planning exciting and engaging sessions within the ReachOut Curriculum
  • Be an inspiring to young people and volunteers

What’s the commitment?

  • Four hour a week paid role which includes planning and delivery of your ReachOut project
  • Be able to deliver a session at the same time each week between September 2021- April/June2022
  • Attend all ReachOut training to prepare you for the role
  • Undergo an Enhanced DBS check

How will I benefit?

  • Develop your leadership, management and communication skills
  • Have access to exclusive development opportunities including your own Career Mentor
  • Receive regular and ongoing feedback from your own line manager
  • Make a genuine difference to the lives of young people

If you would like more information, get in touch with us:
E: becky.sutch@reachoutuk.org
W: www.reachoutuk.org

SHS International Women’s Day Event – 8 March 2021

We are very excited about our upcoming event for International Women’s Day, and hope you can join us on Zoom for what is sure to be a fascinating afternoon. 

Our first keynote speaker (4.10pm) is Dr Heather Williams (Consultant Medical Physicist, The Christie Hospital, Honorary lecturer in SHS) who has recently been awarded an MBE for her work as Director of ScienceGrrl, whose vision is to pass a love of science onto the next generation.

Two inspiring undergraduate students are also speaking. Third year Psychology student, and winner of a 2020 Making a Difference Award for ‘Want Not Waste’, the student run zero waste shop on campus, Holly Smith, will be speaking on the subject of “The role of the ordinary woman in sustainability” at 4.40pm

At 4.55pm, we have Ejiro Melkam – a former Biochemist, newly-qualified community midwife, and mentor for young black women who wish to work in music, midwifery or healthcare. Her talk is “The Bumpy Road to Becoming a Midwife, and the Rich Rewards of Serving Your Community”.

We are delighted that our closing keynote speaker at 5.10pm will be Prof Ijeoma Uchegbu (Pro-Vice Provost – Africa and The Middle East, Chair in Pharmaceutical Nanoscience, UCL School of Pharmacy), an outstanding scientist with a significant interest in the importance of race equality.

Children are very welcome as the event aims to inspire them with science. If you are restricted for time, please feel free to come along to part of the event (times of speakers given).

Tickets are available here.

Posted on behalf of Katharine Wright, School of Health Sciences, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, The University of Manchester

NERC Impact Development Programme

If you would like to increase the impact of your environmental science research, and want to improve your skills in using public engagement to achieve this, then the NERC Impact Development Programme is for you! We will cover the breadth of issues you might encounter, from choosing the best type of public engagement for your specific research; to working through practical issues; to considering how to evaluate your public engagement to find out if it was worth it.

The programme

The Impact Development Programme is a dynamic nine-month professional development opportunity for 40 environmental science researchers to work with the National Coordinating Centre for Public Engagement (NCCPE) to develop their skills in delivering high quality engagement with impact.

The programme includes:

Two online events (31st March and 24th June 2021)

These engaging and specifically tailored events will provide the chance to:

  • Receive expert input on engagement and impact from public engagement experts
  • Participate in interactive group discussions to improve your work and share your feedback with others
  • Hear from other researchers about their engagement and impact work
  • Dedicate time to developing your research and engagement projects, including evaluation plans

The online workshops will be accessible and recorded with regular scheduled screen breaks.

Building connections and expanding support networks is key to navigating the engagement world. The Impact Development Programme will facilitate formal and informal discussions with peers and mentors to help you along the way.

Peer learning
Through small learning groups. The NCCPE work with a pool of experienced mentors from the engagement sector, each learning group will be allocated a mentor to support you in developing your engagement skills.

Is this programme for me?

Applications will be accepted from researchers who are working in NERC remit, based within eligible UKRI eligible research organisations. This includes current and past grant holders, and potential future grant holders, those working across disciplines but linked to environmental science and those who work on NERC funded projects but may not be named on the grant.

Proposals from applicants with diverse backgrounds and experience are encouraged, and there are no limits on amount of postdoctoral experience.
Priority will be given to researchers who can demonstrate that they do not have access to free engagement and impact support and/or networks of those involved in environmental science engagement within their institution or project.

Support to enable researchers to take part

NERC are offering small grants to individuals from UKRI eligible research organisations, who take part in the Impact Development Programme:

  • Small grants will be available to cover time spent participating in the programme, when this is not part of normal work duties, as set out by your employer organisation or company. Grants do not cover time spent planning and development of engagement activity, which is considered part of your responsibilities as a researcher.
  • NERC will also cover reasonable costs where relevant, according to the UKRI Travel and Subsistence policy.

Find out more

Click to find out about the Impact Development Programme.

How to apply

The Impact Development Programme cohort will be selected by NERC, following an application process. Please follow the link to complete your application.



NCCPE contact – stephanie.todd@uwe.ac.uk
NERC contact – hannah.king@nerc.ukri.org

Help disrupted learners be brilliant!

Are you a PhD researcher or doctoral graduate who wants to help a young person realise their academic potential?

With every day of the pandemic, and lockdown, young learners are disrupted. Pupils from underrepresented backgrounds face an even greater education challenge that grows by the day. We need your help now to recruit brilliant tutors to help those disrupted learners.

The Brilliant Club works with PhD students and PhD graduates, who work across three core programmes, from catch-up in key subjects to sharing PhD research to inspire specialist subject learning. With the guidance of the PhDers we work with, over 65,000 learners from underrepresented backgrounds have graduated from our programmes.

The pandemic presents pupils from underrepresented backgrounds with an unprecedented disadvantage reaching further education. A generation of lost learners would have serious implications for university access, so we have pledged to do all we can to support the catch-up effort in schools. We are a National Tutoring Programme approved Tuition Partner and our PhD tutors will be delivering catch-up tutoring to schools through the recently launched Brilliant Tutoring Programme.

Find out more here – https://thebrilliantclub.org/the-scholars-programme/for-researchers/the-opportunity/

Tutor Trust Information Session, Wednesday 3rd March, 1pm – 2pm

The University’s Widening Participation team is organising a webinar with the Tutor Trust. This paid tutoring opportunity is open to undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Tutor Trust Information Session, Wednesday 3rd March, 1pm – 2pm

We would like to invite you to learn more about the work of Tutor Trust and how you can apply to become a tutor. You can sign-up to the webinar via the following this link.

Tutor Trust are an award-winning charity who deliver 1:1 and small group tutoring to children and young people across Greater Manchester, Leeds and Merseyside. Established in Manchester in 2011, they work in schools and alongside teachers to support those pupils who are unlikely to benefit from a private tutor: over two-thirds of the children they work with receive Pupil Premium, are Looked After, or are in Alternative Provision. Tutor Trust works in close partnership with the University of Manchester, with most tutors in Greater Manchester being UoM students.

The charity has gold-standard evidence of impact, with a large-scale Randomised Control Trial (RCT) finding that Year 6 pupils who received twelve hours of Maths tutoring from Tutor Trust made three months additional progress compared with their peers. They are one of the delivery partners of the National Tutoring Programme (NTP), a government-funded programme to help children and young people catch up the lost learning from the period of school closures.

Tutoring with Tutor Trust offers:

  • A flexible, part-time role working for an award-winning charity
  • Socially meaningful and high-impact work supporting children and young people
  • Opportunities to tutor primary Maths and Reading and secondary English, Maths and Science
  • Average pay £19 per hour
  • A wealth of transferable skills for your CV
  • Full training and ongoing support

The role is offered on a self-employed basis, which means you need to be eligible to register in the UK as self-employed in order to apply. Unfortunately, this means we cannot accept applications from students on a Tier 4 visa.

While there is some online work available, Tutor Trust are currently recruiting for tutors who will be available to deliver face-to-face tutoring in Greater Manchester schools. Once schools have reopened after lockdown, there is likely to be very high demand for in-person tutoring. They are particularly keen to recruit more male tutors, more tutors from the local area, and more tutors who have engaged with Widening Participation programmes. WP students often have considerable insight into the challenges that may face schools and pupils in Greater Manchester, and can act as inspiring role models to children and young people.

At the information session, you will learn more about how tutoring can help close the gap for disadvantaged pupils, how to apply to become a tutor and what it’s like to tutor with Tutor Trust. You’ll hear from the Tutor Trust team as well as students from UoM who currently tutor with the charity.

You can find out more about Tutor Trust at www.thetutortrust.org. A great place to start is by reading the 2020 Impact Report. You can also learn more about the National Tutoring Programme.

Posted on behalf of Jenny Muter, Director of Tutor Recruitment and Impact and Roz Webster, Student Recruitment and Widening Participation Officer, Student Recruitment and Widening Participation Team, The University of Manchester, 

Call for Speakers for New Scientist Virtual Events

Live events may still be on hold, but here at New Scientist we are continuing to plan an exciting programme of virtual events throughout 2021. We’re getting audiences in excess of 1,000 for our evening talks with ticketholders from every corner of the world. Our 2021 line-up already includes speakers such as Carlo Rovelli, Ella Al Shamahi, Susan Schneider and Aubrey de Grey.

And at our recent one-day virtual event more than 4,100 viewers heard talks about the future of food and agriculture and engaged with a wealth of workshops, live science chats and activities run by partner organisations.

We’re now expanding our programme of virtual lectures and one-day events, as well as re-imagining our award-winning festival New Scientist Live. The themes of our one-day events this year include Science for good, sustainability, and the future of medicine …. we’re always open to ideas!

We’re on the lookout for inspiring speakers and performers, stimulating experiences and engaging activities. If that’s someone in your place of study and education, we’d love to hear from you! We particularly welcome applications from early-career and underrepresented scientists and communicators.

Please return your New Scientist Events 2021 Speaker Submission Form (doc) by Friday 5th March 2021 to New Scientist Live at: nslspeakers@newscientist.com

Posted on behalf of Jacqui McCarron, New Scientist.
Email: Jacqui.McCarron@newscientist.com
Web: https://www.newscientist.com/science-events/

BIG’s Sci Comm Social, Tuesday, 23 February, 7:30pm

BIG, the Skills Sharing Network for people in STEM Communication, would like
to invite you to our next BIG Sci Comm Social on Tuesday, 23 February, 2021

BIG’s Sci Comm Socials are a regular social gathering of people who work in,
or are interested in, science communication, outreach or public engagement
in STEM. The sessions run approximately every two weeks and each session is
hosted by a different group/person/organisation. These are primarily social
in nature, but it’s also a chance to share news, ideas, upcoming events and
thoughts on STEM communication.

Sessions are free to attend and you do not need to be a Member of BIG to

The upcoming session will be on Tuesday, 23 February, 7:30pm – 9pm.

To receive the Zoom link and passcode, please visit http://www.BIG.uk.com/Socials where you can sign up to our mailing list.

Posted on behalf of  Ashley Kent, BIG – STEM Communicators Network


Standing up for Science workshop – 26 March 2021

Do you want to learn how to effectively engage with the media, understand how evidence is used by policymakers, and confidently communicate your research?

Sense about Science are hosting their first Standing up for Science online workshop of the year, on Friday 26 March, 10:00-13:30.

As part of the Voice of Young Science, a 4000+ network of Early Career Researchers from across Europe, this workshop encourages early career researchers to make their voices heard in public debates about science. During this half-day event, you will meet scientists who have engaged with the media and learn from respected science journalists, hear from policymakers on how to inform policy and talk about involving the public in communicating research with public engagement experts.

To apply for your free place, fill out the application form by 17:00, Monday 1 March.

Celebrate International Women’s Day 2021 #ChooseToChallenge

Please join us to celebrate International Women’s Day 2021 #ChooseToChallenge Monday, 8 March, 12.30pm – 1.30pm

This special event is open to everyone – we look forward to seeing you there!

The Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health (FBMH) is delighted that Dr Nicole Brown, Director of Social Research & Practice and Education Ltd. and Lecturer in Education at the UCL Institute of Education, London will join us to mark International Women’s Day (IWD) 2021.

Nicole’s research focus over the past few years has focussed on the experience of disabled, chronically ill and/or neurodivergent members of higher education staff. She has presented extensively on cost-benefit analyses of disclosure as well as strategies and initiatives individuals and institutions may employ to bring about attitudinal changes regarding ableism.

In this keynote titled, “It’s all in your head”: The experience of disabled women in higher education’, Nicole will draw on her research with academics with fibromyalgia.

Nicole will be joined by Dr Hema Radhakrishnan, Associate Dean for Social Responsibility, and Vikki Goddard, University PS Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and Faculty Director of Operations, FBMH for a Q&A session.

Event details:

Monday, 8 March, 12:30pm – 1:30pm

Venue: Live streamed on the Faculty’s Facebook account – Facebook account not required

Register via Eventbrite

If you have any queries about this event please contact srbmh@manchester.ac.uk.

Posted on behalf of Social Responsibility and Public Engagement Team, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health

New Fund to support community engagement

Tap into the power of IF: The Ideas Fund launches in Oldham

A unique opportunity to work with communities to explore mental wellbeing in Oldham.

The British Science Association (BSA) and the Wellcome Trust have launched The Ideas Fund – a new grants programme to enable people in the UK to develop and evaluate local projects that aim to help to improve mental wellbeing. The Fund is designed to help people tackle issues that matter to them by connecting them with researchers who can help bring their ideas to life. Initially the Fund is focusing on mental wellbeing, with £3.29m funding to support community initiatives in four UK locations including Oldham in Greater Manchester.

The Fund is prioritising support for people who may not have had the opportunities to play an active role in research before, including people in rural locations, people from minority ethnic communities, and young, marginalised people who are socioeconomically disadvantaged.

Vocal is working in partnership with the BSA to help researchers and community groups to create partnerships and develop ideas for the Fund.

Are you a researcher or support researchers in their work?

We are interested in hearing from researchers from a wide range of disciplines. You don’t have to specialise in mental health, but your area of work needs to be linked to mental wellbeing (e.g. psychology, physical health, nutrition etc).

Whether you already have an idea, connections with community groups in Oldham, need some help forming a partnership or even if you want to find out if your research area fits the Fund, please get in touch with us.

If you want to know more about the Fund:

1. Visit The Ideas Fund website: https://theideasfund.org
2. Attend the pre-application workshops, the first one is on the 18th of February at 2pm.
3. Get in touch with us here.

Posted on behalf of Paolo Arru (he/him), Project Manager, Vocal (formerly called the Public Programmes team)