Public Engagement and Progress: UOS at MCUK

December 1, 2011

Since my last blog post we’ve been pretty busy at our MediaCityUK campus.

Touch screen magic during Believe

Teaching, learning and research are now fully up and running, staff and student reaction to the incredible facilities we have here has moved from wide eyed wonderment to getting down to business, and they really are getting on with it. The students I have contact here have really raised their game to match their surroundings, they are motivated, enthused and talking excitedly about their work in the collaborative areas of the building. I’m really proud that they’re living up to expectations of our neighbours at the BBC , Peel, SIS etc and are adding something special to the MediaCityUK environment.  In spite of the inevitable snagging associated with a new build they seem to be enjoying it. Our students are just fabulous!

The environment makes a huge difference! After years of working in grim and grey breeze block buildings I’ve felt happier at work here than I can remember. The architects and designers have done a fabulous job (thank you Fairhursts!). The relaxed open areas with power sockets built into the comfy chairs are a superb environment for creativity and group work. Regardless of whether students are learning to be producers, artists, engineers or scientists it’s all about creativity and collaboration here and it’s working really well so far.

Next step is to start integrating these students from different schools and get them working together in the kind of multi-disciplinary teams they’re going to be operating in when they leave here and go into the industry. There are plans afoot to make this happen in a number of ways, teams working on live briefs for industry, final year projects, assignment work and extra

#12hrfashion's maddest creation

curricular stuff like the RMIT & Salford #12hrFashion session

recently where students from Fashion, Media and Computer Science & Engineering made it all happen.

A number of events have opened up the ground floor to the public; Believe kicked this off and was just stunning. 2700 people came through our building to see some of the work that the University of Salford have been doing. Check out Liz Hannaford’s excellent storify powered blog post for details. We’ve had art installations like Puzzle, guest workshops from people like BBC Radio 1 Xtra DJ Tim Westwood, we’ve got loads more planned so watch the usual places for details on twitter and facebook.

Next blog post will be from the Entertainment Technology Center at Carnegie Mellon University as I’m off to work with their students as part of the growing partnership between us and the ETC. Exciting times. I’ll be there for a week so see you then.

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