Reporter 457, 23 October 2000


LETTERS

We weren’t asked

Christopher Hammond
Department of Materials

The University has recently appointed the Riley Group, an education marketing company, on the basis of ‘feedback from staff with student recruitment responsibilities’ and with ‘the involvement of staff from academic departments’.

Neither I, nor those colleagues in the School with whom I have discussed this matter, have been involved in such procedures; our first-hand experience of the problems of recruiting students in applied science and engineering has not been sought.

In my view, and that of many of my colleagues, the substantial sums that doubtless have been involved in such a marketing contract should rather have been directed towards the provision of financial support of students who are otherwise unable to take up their offers of places in this or indeed any other university.

David Baker, Head of International and Schools Liaison Office, responds:
No fee has been paid to the Riley Group, and the training programmes offered by them through the Staff and Departmental Development Unit are being given free of charge.

Their earnings will come from commission paid by publishers with whom advertising is placed, at net prices which the University is not currently able to achieve without their help.

Other services may be bought from Riley by resource centres, but they are only a preferred supplier. It is not compulsory to use them.

The contract was awarded following a competitive tendering process, which included the involvement of recruitment staff from academic departments with the largest advertising spend. Early feedback from recruitment staff working with Riley, including the School of Process, Environmental and Materials Engineering, has been excellent.

Let’s get together

Jonathan Whittle
Conference and Marketing Office, Residential and Commercial Services

I am writing to introduce myself as I have been seconded to run the conference and marketing office following the recent retirement of Frances Johnson.

The main aim of the conference office is to generate income for the University by letting space and facilities when not required for core activities. Our office, based in University House, can help arrange meetings and events on campus and in halls of residence.

Indeed, recent changes mean that all halls of residence bookings are now to be made through the Conference Office team on extension 6100. Whether you need a meeting for two or 715 people, we can help!

In addition to the normal booking and co-ordination service offered by the team, we are also able to undertake a conference management service, which looks after the administration of your event from inception to conclusion.

So whatever your meeting and event needs, we look forward to hearing from you.

A site worth seeing

Kenneth Hay
Fine Art

Well done on a splendid and functional web-site*, which combines practicality with ease of use. From the visual perspective, the pages are clear and free from unnecessary clutter, and the feedback forms, links, and overall design are exemplary. As my old art teacher used to say, aye, aye, well done, keep on…

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