Tag Archives: Kellogg College

President Post – A Jewel in the Crown

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From left to right: David Griffiths, Jonathan Michie, and Lord & Lady Patten of Barnes.

At our 25th Foundation Dinner on March 14th 2015, the University’s Chancellor Lord Patten described Kellogg College as one of the “jewels in the crown” of the University of Oxford.  This, he said, was in part because of the access we provide – to those who for a variety of reasons might not be in a position to become full-time residential students, for people of all age groups, and for an incredibly international student body.

Kellogg is certainly Oxford’s most international college by any measure – the number of international students, the number of countries from which our students come, and the degree programs that most of our students undertake – such as International Human Rights Law, Sustainable Urban Development, or Evidence-Based Health Care.

Of course, it’s departments rather than colleges that determine the content of Oxford’s degree programs.  But most Kellogg students are continuing with their jobs and careers while they undertake their Master’s and Doctoral programs part-time, and for whatever reason, these part-time degree programs have tended to be more international in content than are Oxford’s full-time degrees.  This may in part be self-fulfilling, because the flexible nature of these degree programs means that people can carry on living and working in Boston, Bombay or Brisbane while they study, visiting Oxford for only short residencies of intensive study.  This facilitates a global spread of students on the degree programs, which in turn perhaps pushes the curricula to be more global – and certainly that international spread will be reflected in the class discussion (whether during the face-to-face residencies or online in between these residencies).

One positive aspect of Oxford’s part-time degrees is to avoid the ‘brain drain’ of developing countries losing their skilled workers overseas, when their students fail to return to their home country after graduating.  Part-time study enables them to continue to live and work in their home country as they earn their degrees – and they are thus much more likely to continue to live, work and contribute to their home countries after graduation.

But apart from making the world a better place, the advantage to the College of our international intake is the amazing diversity of cultural events and activities – including the themed lunches!

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President Post – Delivering the Oxford Experience

There have been several reports recently about mature and part-time students having lost out with the new arrangements for student funding – see for example Peter Scott’s ‘Adult education the loser in a game only young, full-time students win’.

It’s therefore particularly appropriate that the one college in Oxford that was founded with the particular mission and purpose of supporting part-time and mature students should be celebrating its first, fantastically successful, 25 years.  Founded in 1990, this year will see a range of events to mark both our achievements and our ambition, including a June 27th Garden Party to which all College friends are welcome to attend.

The continued success of Kellogg College is due in large part to the quality of the part-time degree programmes that most of our students are taking.  The proven excellence of these degree programmes has led to increased demand for places.  In some cases it has been possible to respond to this by expanding the programmes.  These achievements have also sent a strong signal across the University of Oxford – part-time degrees really can deliver the same high level of quality and excellence which Oxford requires and depends upon.  This in turn has led to more departments wishing to pursue this option.

Thus, while Kellogg does have 240 full-time students, our part-time numbers have continued to grow, currently to 627, making 867 students in total – by far the largest graduate college in Oxford in terms of student numbers, and twice the number of graduates that most colleges have.

But it is true that this continued success has been in the face of many obstacles.  As a graduate only college, we have suffered along with others at the complete failure of the Browne Review – which led to the £9,000 fees for undergraduates – to even consider post-graduate students, despite that having been included in their remit.

Now, eventually, a loan arrangement is to be introduced for postgraduate students.  But it is going to discriminate quite explicitly on grounds of age.  Anyone over 30 can forget it – you have been ruled out already.  You will not be allowed access to the loan arrangement.  Even in Oxford, I’m sorry to say that some other colleges explicitly rule out part-time students from their scholarships.

The conclusion is clear.  We must use our 25th Anniversary to redouble our fundraising efforts, to provide scholarship and other support to our students, including enhancing our library and other facilities.  We have launched a ‘1990 Club’ to mark our Foundation Year, for those able and willing to commit £1990 to the future success of our students and College.  I’m delighted to be able to report that we have already had friends of the College signing up.  This will ensure that our students – including those having to study part-time – will continue to enjoy financial support from the College, along with the sort of college facilities that makes the Oxford experience so special.

Jonathan Michie, March 2015

Follow Jonathan on Twitter @Jonathan_Michie

Kellogg College Design Week: Cultural Capital and Commercial Enterprise

Kellogg student Melena Meese writes about her research trip to Paris, for Kellogg’s first Design Week (1-4 December), to discover the archives of the French fabric company Pierre Frey. 

On a mission with the Kellogg based forum for Decorative Arts and Phenomenology (DAP), co-founder Maximilian Buston and I recently visited the archives of French fabric company Pierre Frey in Paris. Along with a fascinating delve into the archive collections, we also caught up with the company’s creative director Patrick Frey for a lively discussion about the company’s innovative use of archive designs in creating new collections. Pierre Frey is collaborating with DAP on the upcoming series of events being held at Kellogg College, University of Oxford, as part of Design Week: Textiles.

In tandem with the focus on scholarship in the fields of Decorative Arts and Design, one of DAP’s core aims is to reach beyond academia to engage outside cultural entities, practising designers and the broader commercial sector for the exchange of knowledge. Traditionally more prevalent in the sciences, Knowledge Exchange is beginning to gain wider currency in the arts and humanities. Knowledge Exchange can be defined as the process which brings together academic staff, users of research and wider groups and communities to exchange ideas, evidence and expertise. The DAP collaboration with Pierre Frey is an example of this process in action.

Ralph Lauren Flagship

The Ralph Lauren flagship store in Paris proudly perched on Boulevard Saint-Germain. The building in its current glory represents the culmination of a major preservation project undertaken by the company as part of its brand story. 

The revitalization of a number of heritage brands in the retail sector in recent years has prompted the mining of archives for brand history and inspiration, highlighting the vital role of archival work in shaping company communications and product development. Projects involving company archives are just one example of the opportunities for academic collaboration with the commercial sector. Designers often have the same unerring eye for detail (while simultaneously being mindful of its relationship to wider contexts) that also characterises the work of a scholar. Furthermore, successful design-led luxury brands are likely to possess the rare combination of erudition, passion, vested interest and deep pockets necessary to undertake projects underpinned by extensive research. It is worth investigating their potential as not only financial sponsors, but as collaborative partners with researchers.

The retailer Ralph Lauren often integrates historical detail into its brand and has undertaken several high profile conservation projects including a collaboration with the Smithsonian Institution to restore and display The Star-Spangled Banner. Maximilian and I managed to squeeze in a quick visit to the Ralph Lauren flagship store during our trip to view the company’s conservation efforts up close. The stunning building is the result of a major restoration project spanning over four years that involved artisans working with traditional materials and techniques to restore or replicate original decorative features and required prolonged archaeological work upon the discovery of a Roman well beneath the building. The company had a key role in the direction of the research connected to the project.

Ralph Lauren Dining Room

Ralph’s restaurant located in the former stables and carriage houses of the restored 17th century hôtel particulier that houses the company’s flagship store in Paris.

Kellogg College is particularly well placed to facilitate knowledge exchange projects with its vibrant mix of full-time postgraduate students, along with mature and part-time students possessing a wealth of current and past career experience and networks – many of which are in the design, heritage and cultural sectors. Kellogg’s links to the Department for Continuing Education and its architecture, decorative arts and design-related programmes are also an asset. It is hoped that the design week will not only highlight arts and culture at Kellogg, but also spark further collaborations both within and outside of the University.

Melena Meese
DPhil student in Architectural History

A Word from our President

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Our President, Jonathan Michie at the Foundation Dinner, 2014. Photo © Copyright 2014 Kellogg College, All Rights Reserved

On Saturday evening we enjoyed Kellogg’s 24th Foundation Dinner.  The event had been fully-booked for some time, but amongst those who had managed to book in were the Founding President (Geoffrey Thomas), four Founding Fellows (Raymond Flood, David Grylls, Trevor Rowley and Tristram Wyatt), the founding MCR President (Navlika Ramjee), plus other fellows, alumni, students, staff, and guests – including College guests Ben Bolgar from the Prince’s Foundation for Building Community, the Head of the University’s Mathematical, Physical & Life Sciences Division, Alex Halliday and his wife Christine Young, and the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Planning & Resources, William James and his wife Karen Bell.

As ever, we were served a tremendous meal, organised by Mark, created by chefs Jon, Viru, Tom and Matthew, and served by Grant, Eva, Kataryzana and Carlos (along with temporary staff for the evening).

The Foundation Dinners are a welcome opportunity to look back over the previous year, since it can sometimes feel like slow progress building a college in Oxford – which is what we are still in the process of doing.  But taking stock after a year makes one appreciate the significant enhancements which are being made across the board in College life.

Thus, I was able to thank the catering staff for the fact that the annual survey of Oxford students – the Student Barometer – had resulted in Kellogg receiving the third-highest score out of the 37 colleges (All Souls isn’t included) and 6 Permanent Private Halls.  On the crucial question of how well the College Advisor system works, I was able to thank the fellows and staff for the conscientious way in which this role is treated, with Kellogg being rated second out of the 43 colleges and PPHs.

We were able to acknowledge the success of Kellogg fellows in leading the doctoral training developments across the University; the achievement of our students, including Abi Srihara’s winning the Vice-Chancellor’s Civic Engagement Award – following Joy O’Neill’s winning it the previous year; the strengthening of our staffing, with several new appointments including a Communications Officer; and the invaluable volunteering from our alumni.

In addition to all these achievements and successes, we created 25 new student bedrooms through the purchase of 12 Bradmore Road and its renovation along with 38 Norham Road.  And thanks to the legacy from the late Diana Wood, we’re establishing Kellogg’s first fully-endowed scholarship – to cover full fees and living costs, and endowed in perpetuity.

All this creates a solid platform as we enter our 25th year.  A sincere thank you to all Kellogg students, alumni, staff, fellows, Common Room Members, Research Members of Common Room, donors, volunteers, and other friends and supporters from across the University and more widely.

As I said on Saturday evening, one lesson we can learn from Kellogg’s brief history is that however spectacular the past year has been, the next will almost certainly be even more spectacularly successful!

Jonathan Michie, March 2014

Welcome to the Kellogg Blog

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A rainbow over Kellogg College, January 2014

The Kellogg Blog is intended to provide insight into the intellectual activities and the expertise of fellows, students, staff, and friends of Kellogg College, University of Oxford.

In particular, the Kellogg Blog is a forum for expressing opinions, ideas and experiences relating to life at Kellogg – in order to give prospective applicants, colleagues and the wider academic community a more rounded appreciation of life in College. The blog is also a forum in which to share insights and opinions, enhance debate and provide a platform for discussion of important questions for researchers, academics and students across the breadth of academic disciplines that Kellogg represents.