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Graduation Day at The Dome, Brighton. MA ODE

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Saturday, 27 Apr 2013, 15:34

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I'd just paid £50 to hire a gown so I thought I'd save the £65 to £195 on the 'Official Graduation Photo'. This is the one that gets put in a frame with my certificate then. A positve, even emotional experience and a reminder of what the OU stands for and what it means to all of us to do this journey. This should be 2003, but never mind ... got there in the end!

Applications go out in various directions for funded doctoral research ... and one curiosity, an MA in History at Birmingham on 'The Great War' to try and finish a project I started over 22 years ago on the Machine Gun Corps.

I thanked my 14 year old son for coming along as I drove him around to a friend's house and he said, 'No, thank you for inviting me'.

Meanwhile, back to H809.

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Design Museum

Meeting of worlds: universities and small businesses

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 1 Apr 2012, 07:58

Back in 'civvy street' having left the OU after a year in Milton Keynes I got chatting with someone now at the University of Brighton who had 20 years at th OU; he laughed at the degree of truth in my calling it (with love) as 'the priesthood' not least because onarrival for interviews in February 2011 I felt as if I was visiting the Vatican.

There were five others from the University of brighton st this evening event at The Skiff in Brighton's ubber trendy North Lanes.

Phil Jones the MD of Wired Sussex did the introductions.

This was to be a shared conversation on how Brighton and Sussex Universities could work with the 'wired' Brighton sector.

Miltos Petridis, New Head of School, Computing, Maths & Engineering. Brighton University gave the presentation.

I was lucky to spend a goid 15 minutes with him before the presentation and heard some fascinating ideas on how algorithms are used to look at vast quantities of email and social media conversations.

Miltos is from the University of Grenwich where he developed an interest in AI, essentially doing clever things with v. large amounts of data.

He said that Universities tend to thrive in times of recession; I should have asked him why?

More people seing security in a qualification?

There is a desire to hook up with alumni long term, especially as so many choose to stay in the area. I liked what one contributor described as 'fine-grained collisions', sandwhich courses and internships for example where undergraduates with desirable niche skills cab put them to good use' in industry'.

Miltos made the point that 'What we are calling clouds a few years ago used to be mainframes'.

Another contibutor with a music degree said that this taught him the value of collaboration, a skill too many graduates lack. I wonder if proof of collaborating online couldn't be offered in evidence?

  • There was talk abput apprenticeships.
  • Being mentored.
  • Creating a sense of accomplishment over a week.

I plan to attend Wrired Sussex events in Brighton regularly, also IVCA meetings in London; networking online isn't enough, it is relationships made face to face that lead to something. So I've rejoined the Institue of Swimming and in constract, the Royal Academy.

(I have always thought the the sides of swimming pools would make a fantastic gallery for art; has anyone to your knowledge done this outside the private home of the very wealthy?)

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Networking

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 29 Aug 2011, 17:02

The old fashioned kind ... off-line.

Evenings & weekends I'm a swim coach. Chatting to a parent last night about her son's crisis over course work and exams for GCSEs I mentioned the OU course I was doing. Before I know it I've got an introduction to the person responsible for training at a large county council. I was also able to get some insights into how 'e.learning' has gone. The greatest memory was of too many poor links in the early days so that anyone on a course constantly found they were being linked to the wrong place and coming to a dead end. After a few years of doing it all in-house it is now outsourced.

A start has been made.

Attending a Careers Fair in Brighton put on by Wired Sussex delivered three companies that specialise in e.learning. If I can convince them I can be introduced to their clients I may have an in here too. And once again, old fashioned 'face-to-face' interactions is/was the key. As salespeople know it is harder to turn someone down in the flesh and in this context they can see that I am a well-meaning, well-turned out, experienced & savvy bloke.

A start.

 

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