The article by Dr Louise Owusu-Kwarteng, recently featured in Studies in Higher Education Journal, analyses the challenges and benefits of being a West African – international student in the English Academic scenario.
The study, based on the experience of 12 West African (Nigeria, Ghana and Sierra Leone) students illustrates why ‘studying in this England is trouble’. If on one hand there is an underlying promise of a more successful career future with academic achievement accredited abroad, on the other, the contrasts in education systems, adjustment to a different culture, environment, cost of living, lifestyle and contrasting study pace can be a hard hit for some students. Nothing prepares them to this reality, it must be lived and experienced. Pessimism aside, this narrative is a clear contrast with that portrayed in the comedy film Coming to America but equally enlightening.
Dr Louise Owusu-Kwarteng cleverly achieves a Publication that draw us to reflect on the polarity of two very distinct education system – the Western world and Africa, while subtly creating awareness for this reality.
Dr Elena Vacchelli was recently invited to attend an ‘Expert meeting on the cooperation between Africa and Europe‘ in Dakar, Senegal. The event took place earlier this year and was the final meeting of the Horizon 2020 project CrossMigration. Dr Vacchelli delivered a well received talk highlighting methodological aspects of her research. The 2 day meeting focused on the cooperation between Africa and Europe for a strategic research agenda on migration and was attended by over 40 participants including international organisations and NGOs.
Amongst the organising committee was Papa Sakho, Geography Professor at Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar and Riccardo Pozzo, History and Philosophy Professor at Tor Vergata University in Rome.
Congratulations to Dr Vacchelli for putting Greenwich on the map and stealing the spotlight!
The month of March celebrates women, firstly marking Women’s International Day then followed by Mother’s Day and this year The Phenomenal Women exhibition raises the bar by highlighting the role of Black Women in Education.
Perceived as the first photographic exhibition honouring Britain’s black female professors, The Phenomenal Women exhibition features a collection of portraits captured by the prestigious photographer Bill Knight, OBE and curated by Dr Nicola Rollock, reader in equity and education at Goldsmiths, University of London. The black and white images of 40 professors in Academia range from different subject area; law, medicine, creative writing and sociology.
University of Greenwich’s Research Professor Tracey Reynolds is among the group of black women honourees who are setting the path and an example of excellence in Education. The news featured on the BBC website.
The show is free to attend and will be at London’s City Hall from 18 March until the end of the month.
Congratulations to Professor Tracey Reynolds for the recognition of Excellence and getting the Spotlight!
From Margins to Centre?: An Undergraduate Conference on Marginalised Histories! was a one day conference attended by Gabriel B. Couto Ribas, a Sociology a BSc Hons Sociology and Psychology at the University of Greenwich, which took place 28th February 2020 at the University of York. The conference had a particular focus on LGBT+ history, women’s history, BME history and history of disability. Aimed specifically at undergraduate students to involve them in the discipline.
Gabriel was an invited panellist and presented the paper ‘Drag and Me’ – Autobiographical reflections on the impact of drag artistry in my life- a very personal approach, shared in the recently published autobiography ‘Livin’ Our Best Lives: Autobiographical Reflections of life in Current Times’ soon available online.
The keynote speech was given by Catherine Hall, Emerita Professor of History at UCL , with panels chaired by Jonathan Saha and Sue Lemos.
Congratulations to Gabriel and the Applied Sociology Group!
Calling out all poetry lovers! Megan Fernandes, Emily Critchley, Polly Atkin and Will Harris will be reading poems on an evening hosted by Natasha Hakimi Zapata The event will take place on 13th March from 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm at Burley Fisher Bookshop in East London, 400 Kingsland Rd, Dalston, London E8 4AA
Meet the poets
Will Harris is a writer of mixed Anglo-Indonesian heritage, born and based in London. He has worked in schools, led workshops at the Southbank Centre and teaches for The Poetry School. He is an Assistant Editor at The Rialto and a fellow of The Complete Works III. Published in the Bloodaxe anthology Ten: Poets of the New Generation, he was featured in ES Magazine as part of the “new guard” of London poets. His poem ‘SAY’ was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem 2018, and he won a Poetry Fellowship from the Arts Foundation in 2019. His debut pamphlet of poems, All this is implied, published by HappenStance in 2017, was joint winner of the London Review Bookshop Pamphlet of the Year and shortlisted for the Callum Macdonald Memorial Award by the National Library of Scotland. Mixed-Race Superman, an essay, was published by Peninsula Press in 2018 and in an expanded edition by Melville House in the US in 2019. His first full poetry collection, RENDANG, is forthcoming from Granta in the UK in February 2020 and from Wesleyan University Press in the US later in the year.
Emily Critchley‘s poetry collections have been published by Boiler House, Barque, Intercapillary, Corrupt, Holdfire, Torque, Oystercatcher, Dusie, Bad and Arehouse presses. A 2011 selected writing, Love / All That / & OK (US), was published by Penned in the Margins; her most recent collection, Ten Thousand Things, was published by Boiler House Press in 2017. She is also editor of Out of Everywhere 2: Linguistically Innovative Poetry by Women in North America & the UK (Reality Street, 2016)(US) and a Senior Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at the University of Greenwich, London. She has publications forthcoming from Shearsman and Crater presses.
In an interview with Vicky Featherstone, the first female Artistic Director of the Royal Court Theatre, Professor Mark O’Thomas, Pro Vice-Chancellor at the University of Greenwich discussed, among other things, the Royal Court’s relationship to social class, race, disadvantaged communities and, in particular, focuses on Featherstone’s artistic programme since taking charge at the Court in 2013.
The conversation between Mark O’Thomas and Vicky Featherstone is featured in the book chapterCommunity and Ownership: Uncovering New Voices at the Royal Court Theatre and highlights the importance of theatre in the context of current times.
The publication Redefining Theatre Communities: International Perspectives on Community-Conscious Theatre-Making, edited by Marco Galea, and Szabolcs Musca is available to purchase, as hard copy or kindle edition from Amazon
The University of Greenwich is proud to announce that PhD student Beth Gaskell has been awarded the Curran Fellowships. The grants were founded by pioneer researcher Eileen Curran to support primary source and archival research into the periodical press of 19th-century Britain and its empire. The 2020 Curran Fellowships include: Beth Gaskell, The History of Early Regimental Journals
This grant will enable Beth to pursue her work on C19 military periodicals after her PhD, which is nearly completed.
More detail of the Curran Fellowships can be found at
Written by Professor Tracey Reynolds, Research Lead of Applied Sociology Research Group and Rohima Begum Miah (Sociology Graduate and GWES intern)
The Applied Sociology Research Group is new to University, established in September 2016. This multi-disciplinary group consolidates and brings together social science research across schools/departments located in various Faculties. The research groups’ key thematic priorities are:
Enhancing citizenship and participation for marginalised groups
Social inclusion, health and wellbeing
Since the group’s
inception we have placed particular emphasis
on creative, participatory and applied social research for
community engagement partnerships with voluntary and community organisations to identify and respond to the needs of the local
community using research for social activism. Oftentimes this involves
developing research projects in
collaboration with voluntary organisations and social justice agencies. We
have organised various activities, events with the aim of promoting and
supporting research and engagement activities with marginalised groups in local
community settings. For list of recent activities please project website Applied
Our most recent example, was an event organised in celebration of Black History Month 2019. Entitled ‘United By/Divided By Race, Ethnicity and Gender: Inter-generational legacies explored’ this event involved collaboration with Caribbean Social forum, a local community organisation for BAME/Caribbean elders and National Maritime Museum, based in Greenwich (26th October 2019). The University’s campus Bathway Theatre in Woolwich, situated in the heart of Woolwich, with an ethnically diverse community, provided the ideal place in which to hold this event.
The event sought to commemorate the history, achievements and legacies of
Black people in the UK, across ethnic, gender
and generation divides. It was important for us to also celebrate the
contribution of Black people to UK
society and raise public awareness and knowledge of Black history and culture.
In addition to being a day of celebration, we also wanted it to be a learning too
and the activities that took place on the day very much spoke to our ethos of the
importance of participatory learning!
The first of a series of books created by the Applied Sociology Research Group in collaboration with the Office of Undergraduate Research, ‘Livin’ Our Best Lives’ is an autobiographical account of undergraduate students life experience. Special acknowledgement to Dr Louise Owusu-Kwarteng and Dr Ewa Sidorenko.
Students from the Sociology, Sociology & Psychology, Education Studies, Childhood & Youth Studies study programmes have contributed to the achievement of this page turner.