Hudds up for awards from The Guardian

Thu, 31 Jan 2013 11:10:00 GMT

Uni shortlisted in the Inspiring Leader and Student Experience

Guardian short list awards logo THE University of Huddersfield is aiming for double success in a prestigious new awards scheme launched by The Guardian newspaper. 

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Bob Cryan, has been nominated as Inspiring Leader and the University’s innovative MyReading software is shortlisted in the Student Experience category.  The results will be announced at a ceremony taking place on 27 February. 

The Guardian runs an influential Higher Education Network and decided to institute new annual awards for the sector.  

“We are committed to covering education through regular expert coverage in print and online and with the Higher Education Network we reach thousands people working in the sector each month,” says the newspaper’s Head of Education, Wendy Berliner. 

“So we are delighted to introduce the Guardian University Awards,” she adds.  “They will recognise and celebrate the very best in universities whether it is in research, teaching excellence or facilities and everything else in between – all the things that make UK universities uniquely great.” 

‌Inspiring Leader 

Professor Bob Cryan Professor Cryan is one of a roster of eight leading figures from the sector nominated as Inspiring Leader. 

The citation for his nomination reads: 

“Bob Cryan is a Huddersfield man to his core with a deep commitment both to his university and to his community.  The dual evolution of the University of Huddersfield into an anchor institution in its community and a sector leader in business engagement has been recognised through the award of Entrepreneurial University of the Year 2012.  Bob is a leader in every sense of the word.  His financial stewardship is exemplary, taking the university out of debt whilst embarking on £100m of visionary developments without borrowing. 

“He is well known to staff at all levels and fosters in them a strong commitment to the University’s mission and to its business-engagement agenda, where students are kept at the heart of the institution, where the skills base of the local economy is fuelled by the University, and where the University is recognised as being a source of innovation and applied research.  Under Bob’s inspirational leadership Huddersfield has undergone a major transformation resulting in a tripling of postgraduate and international students and moving up a stunning 47 places in the Guardian University League Table.” 

Student Experience 

Voting for the Inspirational Leader took place on-line and the result will be announced at the 27 February ceremony, when the University of Huddersfield will also hope for success in the Student Experience category.  The prize here is awarded “to a university that has made an outstanding commitment to ensuring the best possible overall experience for students taking into consideration academic and social aspects”. 

My reading software logo It was decided to enter the University’s specially developed MyReading software for this category, and judges chose it to join a shortlist of three for the award. 

‌MyReading is innovative, interactive reading list software developed at the University of Huddersfield in consultation with academics and students.  It provides direct access to reading lists for students on all modules, including enhanced access to full text online and an assurance of sufficient copies of books within the library. 

Developing the software in-house meant that it could include many innovative features, including an option for academics and students to interact.  MyReading is now fully deployed, highly popular with students and staff and the objective of 100 per cent module inclusion will soon be achieved.

My Reading team

The team which developed MyReading was headed by Eileen Hiller, who is Head of Academic Services for the University’s Computing and Library Services. 

Pictured [left to right] members of the MyReading team: Chris Beevers, Dave Pattern, Eileen Hiller, Alison Sharman, Andy Raistrick and Andrew Walsh

She has paid tribute to her colleagues and thanked Professor Tim Thornton, the University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor for Teaching and Learning, who was a “driving force” behind the project.

‌It has already scooped one prize – the system received the Award for Excellence at the annual conference of the National Acquisitions Group (NAG) the major professional organisation for library management.

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