Monthly Archives: September 2015

18Sep/15

GRADnet Virtual Research Environment (VRE) – Logins and Access to Training Opportunities

With the start of the new academic year upon us and the GRADnet training programme being launched for the coming year, we must ensure that all PGR students in SEPnet have ensured they have logins for the GRADnet Virtual Research Environment and that these logins are functioning. Your login (also called an OUCU) is of the form AB12345 where AB is normally your two initials.

It is vital that all students are able to login to the VRE and regularly check it for information and enrolment on GRADnet offerings. We have implemented a system for enrolling on GRADnet offerings via the VRE and for most offerings enrolment will only be possible via the VRE. Eventbrite or other registration sites will only be used in exceptional circumstances.

This same system on the VRE allows you to find and search for courses, workshops, residential schools etc that you may be interested in attending or required to attend. It is important that you are able to access it and to ensure you are able to use it. These can be found under the Training tab when logged onto the VRE and the GRADnet Training Catalogue entry on that page.

The VRE is accessible via www.sepnet.ac.uk/vre . It can also be found via the SEPnet website (www.sepnet.ac.uk) under the “SEPnet Graduate Network” menu: SEPnet Graduate Network -> GRADnet’s Virtual Research Environment.

For:

  • New Students (or unregistered current students): you will need to register and can do so on www.sepnet.ac.uk/vre At busy times this process may take up to 5 days, if you have not received account details within 5 days please contact your local GRADnet administration contact.
    • Herts: Kathy Head
    • Kent: Helen West
    • The OU: Georgina Vizard
    • Portsmouth: Emma Bain
    • QMUL: Karen Wilkinson
    • RHUL: Carmella Froggatt
    • Southampton: Ceris French
    • Surrey: Karen Graham
    • Sussex: Rebecca Foster
  • If you have an existing account but have forgotten the password you can reset your password by calling the helpdesk on 01908 654321 and ask for your “visitor SAMS password” to be reset. You will need to know your username (OUCU) and may be asked to confirm your date of birth. If you are unable to call the helpdesk then you can email vre-webmaster@open.ac.uk but please note that it can take longer to reset your password by email. DO NOT use the “password reset” link on the OU sign on screen. 
  • If you have forgotten your username (OUCU) then please contact the GRADnet administrator at your university. Before doing so please check historical emails and other sources that may include your OUCU.
  • Expired access: in some instances it is possible that access has expired (depending on when the account was created and last accessed). If you are using your username and password and unable to log in or not seeing what you expect then you should email vre-webmaster@open.ac.uk  to investigate. This process will always take longer to investigate than a password reset so if there is any chance that you are using the wrong password then you should take the password reset option first.
  • Non-SEPnet accounts: some students have created accounts from the main OU website. If this is the case then you won’t have a username made up of your initials followed by some numbers. Depending on the information that you provide it can take a while to get to investigate these so it would be important to include this in any communication so that you can be instructed to register using the SEPnet VRE registration.

 

Having validated that your account works and that you can sign in, please ensure that you keep your account information with you so that it does not become necessary to reset the passwords because of infrequent use. Web-browsers often enable the automatic storage of passwords and account details and help make logging in much easier but you may find this gets lost in some circumstances.

As we anticipate that the new cohort of students joining this term will be registering for the VRE when they have been to the GRADnet Roadshows, you may find that it takes longer to reset your accounts if you wait until this period, so we would urge you to act now.

17Sep/15

Successful GRADnet “Meet the Employers” event for Physics PhD students

Last night at the University of Southampton SEPnet’s Graduate Network (GRADnet) held a networking evening to facilitate collaboration and links between industry and physics with postgraduate research students and researchers (PGRs).

Attending the event were:

  • SEPnet PGR students who wanted to meet employers from physics-related industries to find out about career opportunities, make contacts and explore research and business ideas.
  • SEPnet partner researchers who wanted to build links with industry to explore how their research can create impact.
  • SMEs, businesses and employers in physics-related industries interested in developing links with universities and recruiting physics graduates.
Panel session

Introducing the Panel session

During the evening we heard from panellists Simon Crook of EPSRC; Anke Lohmann, KTN Head of Photonics & Quantum Technologies; Julian Potter of WP Thompson IP; Nick Walker of eOsphere; Andrew Witham of Symetrica; Maya Dillon, Community Manager of Pivigo Academy who talked about the benefits of knowledge exchange and what physics postgraduates and postdocs can offer industry.

This was followed by a “speed networking” event in which PGR students, academics and employers discussed how to build ongoing relationships between industry and researchers through placements, mentoring or research collaboration.

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Speed Networking

Speed Networking

Speed Networking

At the end of the evening there was an opportunity for informal networking over refreshments. Feedback from students, employers and academics was that the events was extremely successful and enjoyable. The next event is being planned and is likely to be at The University of Kent on the 27th January 2016. Details will be posted on the GRADnet VRE.

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More photos from the evening can be found on Google Photos:


09Sep/15

SEPnet sponsors the WISE ‘People Like Me’ Resource pack and app

SEPnet is delighted to support the launch of new resources by Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) who have produced a set of training and teaching resources for teachers, STEM Ambassadors and an interactive app for girls to help educate and inspire.

At the British Science Festival in Bradford yesterday, Stephanie McGovern, journalist and broadcaster, hosted the launch of the ‘People like me’ resource pack and app which is is the first novel approach to increasing the number of girls in science in 30 years. Research conducted by WISE in the Not for people like me report, found that talking about scientists and engineers and what they do often doesn’t attract girls. Instead, allowing girls to look at the sort of person they are and how their attributes correspond to roles in these sectors does.

AverilMacDonaldSEPnet’s Professor Averil MacDonald produced the Not for people like me report and spoke at the launch of the new resource packs.

The resource packs are available from  here: PeopleLikeMe_SEPnet_mainpack

PeopleLikeMe_SEPnet_leaflet

PeopleLikeMe_SEPnet_poster

07Sep/15
GRADnet Summer School

SEPnet shortlisted for Times Higher Education award

We are delighted that SEPnet has been shortlisted for the Times Higher Education (THE) Award for Outstanding Employer Engagement Initiative for our work with postgraduate research students.

 

Hundreds of nominations from institutions, departments and individuals were submitted across 18 categories covering the full range of university activity.

 

The full shortlist for all 18 categories is published in Times Higher Education and is also available on the awards website: www.the-awards.co.uk   The winners will be announced on Thursday 26 November 2015 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.