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Department Newsletters

Staff Newsletter - march 2019

Staff@Cam: your twice-yearly update from the chemistry department.

This is your newsletter, for staff and about staff. In this issue we feature staff awards and achievements, wellbeing events, department quizzes and coffee mornings, plus new and retiring staff. If you experience any issues viewing this newsletter, then please email And please also contact us if you have any news to share in the next issue, due out in July. Thank you!


Great fun for a good cause

Staff enjoyed taking part in a Christmas Jumper Day in December. It was fun seeing colleagues decked out in bright and colourful sweaters (and indeed antlers and sparkly capes), plus it helped to support a good cause.

Hello and goodbye

There have been a number of staff changes in the past few months as members of the department are appointed or promoted, leave or retire. Catch up on the latest staffing updates.

Cakes against cancer

Some staff members made cake, some ate cake, and some had cake thrust upon them as they supported the World's Biggest Coffee Morning, a departmental social event and a fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support. See the (mouthwatering) pictures.

Anna & Evan Meet Charles Darwin

Wanting a book to read to her young daughter, and frustrated at finding only stories about princesses and unicorns, researcher Tanya Hutter wrote her own. Anna and Evan Meet Charles Darwin - which aims to encourage very young children to be curious about science - has just been published. Read it online.

Trying to go greener

The department is making real progress in its attempts to become greener and more energy efficient. In Lensfield Road, we are now using a third less electricity than we did ten years ago: our annual average has fallen from 850 megawatt hours per year to 630 megawatt hours per year. Find out more about what we're doing to be greener - and how everyone could help.

Volunteering for Open Day?

Could you help make 'Elephant Toothpaste' or 'Rainbow Water' during our Open Day? Or perhaps you'd enjoy running the Liquid Nitrogen Ice-Cream Stand or demonstrating Dry Ice experiments? If so, then Open Day co-ordinator Emma Powney would love to hear from you. Read more about this year's Open Day.

Calling all Cricketers

As in previous years, there will be a departmental cricket team again this summer. Research Fellow Matthew Dunstan, the team captain, says: "I expect our matches will begin in May. Contact me (at if you're interested in playing. Everyone is welcome, no matter what experience they have!" See how how the team fared last year.

Being well at work

Under the WellChem banner, fun socials like coffee mornings and quizzes, fitness offerings like lunchtime Pilates classes, and health-promoting events such as a breast cancer awareness talk, are supporting our wellbeing. Find out about upcoming events.

University Staff Survey

The University is conducting its first staff-wide survey this month and is encouraging all members of staff to take part and say what they think about a range of workplace topics. Find out how to take part.

Awards for our colleagues

Many congratulations to our colleagues who have received awards in the last couple of months:

New Reprographics Clerk

There is a new face in the Reprographics office. Lillian Bixler took over from Amanda Tribble in January as our Reprographics Clerk and is the person to see if you require help with services like printing, photocopying, scanning and soft binding. Read more about Lillian.


Talking about pensions

An informative talk about the University's Assistants’ Contributory Pension Scheme here in early July generated positive feedback from the staff who attended. Read more here.

Discussing equality in the workplace

We held a special 'Women in Chemistry' alumni event in February to mark the UN International Day of Women in Science - and got an enthusiastic response from our PhD students and postdocs. They joined alumni in the second part of the event for a 'Question Time'-style discussion of equality in the scientific workplace, with topics ranging from overcoming imposter syndrome to making childcare provision more accessible to all parents.