Welcome to the world of Music TJ!

Hi all,

Forgive me for taking so long to update my blog. I will be working hard to ensure I keep to my promised fortnightly updates

It’s been a fairly manic few months and there is just so much to feedback to you guys. I’m not sure where to begin!

Well, I’ve been spending a lot of time with students and many of you have stopped me in the streets, shops and even in clubs to ask questions etc. Keep it up guys, it’s the way to ensure I’m always kept abreast of what’s going on in studentville! I spend every Tuesday at Kingston Hill now, as we have an office space right above Hannafords. I will be looking to spend some time at the other sites as well.

By now everyone will have settled in well and you’ll have found your social circles etc. Don’t be afraid to branch out into other social circles. I found my time was enriched by being able to spend time. There’s been so much going on:

Annual Students’ Meeting

At KUSU’s last Executive meeting we decided to change the name of our Annual General Meeting to the Annual Students’ meeting with the view of making it more student friendly and less like a shareholders meeting! J

So…our first ASM is on 24 Nov at 1pm. At the Penrhyn Rd campus in Clattern Lecture Theatre. Our Vice-Chancellor, Sir Peter Scott will be in attendance to answer your questions. This will be a good time to ask him your questions about graduation and whatever other queries you have for the University. All lectures have been cancelled that afternoon so I would love to see as many of you as possible there.

This is a chance for you to put forward any policies you want the Student Union to put into place. The Student Union’s recent policy of not allowing the Army on site sparked a great deal of controversy. If you want this overturned you will need to bring it to the ASM so it can be voted on. A guide to writing motions will be put on the Student Union website soon. www.kusu.co.uk


Much work has been done about graduations and where you guys (current final year students and others) will be graduating. As you know, there was much controversy when the University decided to move graduations from Central London to The Rose Theatre in Kingston. Many of you were not keen on the idea of a University marketing itself as a London University not graduating its students in London. Nevertheless, after the great response from the Student Union survey about this the University have decided that, while the current cohort of graduands (08/09 completers) will graduate at The Rose Theatre, the case is not closed with regards to everyone else. The university have told us they will provide surveys on the graduation days where you get to record your experience. I urge you all, as far as possible. When you graduate, in November, January, or March, fill in the surveys and make your feelings clear. Make them as clearly as you’ve made them to me, and as clearly as you’ve made them on facebook. If you decide you will not be attending your graduation, an idea I was toying with myself, please make it clear to the University why you have decided to miss your graduation. I’m hoping your responses with push the University into action and ensure that the students’ voices are never sidestepped.

International Students

I went to the airport to meet many of the new international students as you arrived, and met up with more of you during your orientation. Many of you will remember me from The Rose Theatre with my fun and games on stage. I’ve spent a lot of time with you guys and note that you seem to be acclimatising quite well. Now that you are a few months in, if you find at any point you’re starting to feel a little home sick and just want talk with someone, the International Office have people you can speak with. Otherwise, just find me, or Robin, the International Student Officer and we’ll be more than happy to quietly listen. Many of you know exactly where to find me, the Student Union Offices or out of hours I’m likely to be at the Kingston Hill bar or some other bar in Kingston, chatting with students about one thing or another. Feel free to come join. J


I was part of the panel that interview for the new Deputy Vice-Chancellor and I’m exceptionally happy that the former Dean of Science David Mackintosh got the post. We interviewed some very strong candidates but we believed that David would have the students (that’s you guys!) interests at the forefront of all he does. It’s now up to us to work hard alongside him to make sure the students’ views are put above all else.


Well, quite a lengthy blog this one! I will try HARD to make sure my blogs are more timely and as a result less wordy! J

Well, that’s me in a nutshell for now. Far from an exhaustive list but, that’s exactly what I don’t want this to be, exhaustive!


You know where I am:

0208 417 2026


Look forward to hearing from you soon!



2 responses

  1. Kris

    Hey TJ, I was wondering about something regarding the issue of the location of graduation ceremonies. Could you perhaps explain why it is an issue to graduate at the Rose Theatre. Although I understand the false advertising argument to some extent, but we’re not studying in central London either. So if anything is false advertising it is that. Since we’re taking classes in the Kingston area, it only makes sense to actually graduate here as well right?

    November 18, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    • toju1

      Hi Kris,

      I can definitely understand your point about the fact that we study in Kingston so arguably we should graduate here. I think the problem is that we used to graduate in Central London (Royal Albert Hall or Royal festival Hall). These graduations were moved without any notice or consultation, so as a result it’s understandable that students will feel undervalued and unappreciated. In my view, the problem is less that its in kingston and more that it’s been moved from such presitgious locations to The Rose Theatre without first informing students this was being considered or even consulting them.

      A survey was conducted bythe Students’ Union, in conjunction with the university to find out where students wanted to graduate. And a large percentage of these preferred to graduate in London, either Royal Albert Hall or Royal Festival Hall. So it’s not a case of KUSU campaigning for the sake of it. Students have complained and as a student representative body it is imperative that we listen and do as much as we can about it.

      I trust this answers your questions.

      If you have any further queries feel free to reply here or email me directly at president@kingston.ac.uk


      November 18, 2009 at 2:42 pm

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