Work begins on Bournemouth University International College


Work has begun on a new Bournemouth University International College, which will offer international students academic programmes to prepare them for degree courses at BU.

The Bournemouth University International College, located on Holdenhurst Road, will comprise of a four storey academic block and a 16 storey residential block and will welcome 600 international students every year.

The college will offer preparation programmes, which will give students the academic and English language skills to go on and study undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at Bournemouth University.

It will be run in partnership with Kaplan International Colleges, who collaborate with universities to prepare international students for studying degrees in the UK.

At a ground breaking ceremony held to mark the start of work on the building, BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney, said: “This literally is a ground breaking moment for Bournemouth University, as this new partnership with Kaplan is the start of a new opportunity for us that will help us to realise our global ambitions.

BUIC groundbreaking“The Bournemouth University International College is a tool for enabling more students from around the world to experience the education we have to offer, with such potential for talent from around the world to develop at BU.”

Linda Cowan, Managing Director of Kaplan International Colleges, added: “We have worked with Bournemouth University over a number of years and are excited by the opportunity to develop further our relationship with this significant investment in the university and the wider Bournemouth community.

“We will be delivering programmes on the university’s Lansdowne campus, and with BU’s strong reputation in areas like media and tourism – along with the new facilities that are being developed, integrating study, cultural and social space – we have a very strong offer for students from around the world.”

The construction work on the development will be carried out by Watkin Jones, and the building is due to be completed and open by September 2015.

Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney appears in The Telegraph

Bournemouth University Vice-Chancellor John Vinney was featured in The Telegraph in an article discussing a new government policy, which promises to open the door to more students by removing the cap which controls numbers of students that universities can recruit.  

Professor Vinney said the reforms would make an impact, irrespective of “discussions about affordability and implementation. Higher Education is a fundamental good for both the individual and society, and any effort to make it more accessible to a larger number of people should be applauded”.

He went on to say, “Speaking as a father, I am pleased that when my children start thinking about going to university they will have a much better chance of entering higher education, and will be much more likely to get a place at the university they want to study at, provided they put in the hard work required”.

“Speaking as a Vice-Chancellor we will now have a true market in Higher Education, with all the joys and sorrows that come with it”.

From autumn 2015, the controls limiting the numbers of students that universities in England can recruit will be scrapped. David Willets, Universities Minister, said the decision will “free universities to recruit the students they want and give people far more choice over where to study”.

BU celebrates Chinese New Year


Bournemouth University celebrated Chinese New Year with traditional entertainment organised by BU’s Chinese Student and Scholar Association (BU CSSA).

The event, held at BU’s Kimmeridge House, included a traditional lion dance, songs sung by a Chinese choir and a number of musical performances.

VIPs in attendance included Bournemouth University Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney and The Mayor and Mayoress of Poole Councillor Philip Eades & Mrs Helen Eades.

Xinglong Ma, vice-president of BU CSSA, was part of the team to organise the event and said, “There were lots of Chinese people celebrating together, including students, scholars as well as local Chinese people. It was great to promote our cultures in Bournemouth and Poole.

“Chinese New Year, just like Christmas,  is the most important festival for the Chinese people and all family members get together to celebrate. This event was brilliant. I really want to thank all our supporters from BU’s different departments and external organisations.  When we heard the roars of applause, every BU CSSA members felt very glad. Because all our work was not in vain.”

Over 100 people attended the event, with BU staff members, students and members of the public in attendance. Caroline Earth, Transition and Wellbeing Officer at Bournemouth University, said “I’ve attended a number of Chinese New Year events at BU over the years and this was certainly the biggest and best! The students had clearly put a lot of effort into organising it. It was a really interesting insight into Chinese culture and the high-point for me was the traditional lion dance. It was great to see so many people from the local Chinese community there, as well as students and staff from BU.”

Ian Jones, Head of Regional Community Partnerships at BU, said, “It was a great event and very enjoyable. I have to congratulate the organisers on creating such an amazing array of talent. I was also struck by how many from the community attended, a real testament to how hard the students worked to make it happen.”

Other entertainment at the event included a Traditional Chinese Costume and Tea Show and a solo by Dr Ping Hua using a traditional Chinese lute instrument.  Chinese buffet-style refreshments were also provided by some of the event sponsors.

John Vinney speaks to Guardian Higher Education Network


Bournemouth University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Vinney, spoke to the Guardian to give his thoughts on George Osborne’s plans for the future of Higher Education, announced during the autumn statement.

The plans centred on freeing the restriction currently placed on the number of students universities can recruit each academic year.  Funds will be created for the new plan by selling the loan book that supports students while they study.

The blog post started with Professor Vinney declaring that ‘Christmas had come early’ for Higher Education institutions as the cap on the number of students was relaxed, “It is easy to get caught up in discussions about affordability and implementation, but the real headline in the chancellor’s autumn statement is that Christmas just came early for a future generation of students. Higher education is a fundamental good for both the individual and society, and any effort to make it more accessible to a larger number of people should be applauded.”

In the article Professor Vinney weighed the pros and cons of such a move, stating, “Speaking as a father, I am pleased that when my children start thinking about going to university they will have a much better chance of entering higher education, and will be much more likely to get a place at the university they want to study at, with their likelihood of success being dependent solely on their academic ability.”

Professor Vinney continued, “Speaking as a vice-chancellor, we will now have a true market in higher education, with all the joys and sorrows that come with it. But competitive, innovative providers who genuinely care about the future of their students and graduates should have absolutely nothing to fear from that.”

Professor Vinney concluded by saying, “The freeing of controls is a landmark moment for the sector and I for one am glad that a little bit of ideological policymaking has prevailed at last.”

Read the article in full on the Guardian website.

BU and AFC Bournemouth kick off partnership


A new partnership between Bournemouth University and AFC Bournemouth will create exciting opportunities for students, graduates and the local community.

The four-year partnership between BU and The Cherries is designed to enhance students’ experiences through a variety of exclusive work experience opportunities, giving them a competitive edge when looking for full-time work.

This includes working alongside the AFC Bournemouth Community Sports Trust in delivering an annual season-long project for every year of the partnership, as well as supporting the club’s media and commercial team on match days.

Bournemouth University Vice-Chancellor John Vinney said he was delighted to see two of the town’s biggest institutions working together for the benefit of the students and the community.

“We are very excited about the partnership with AFC Bournemouth and the opportunities and experiences it will create for our students,” he said.

“It is also exciting that our two institutions will be partnering to make a difference in our local community, showing a continuing commitment to the area in which our staff and students live.”

The new partnership will also mean BU’s varsity football teams receive expert coaching from AFC Bournemouth’s Community Sports Trust.


At the launch of the partnership, the teams were treated to a training session with AFC Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe at the Goldsands Stadium.

“I think it’s a great tie-up,” Eddie said.

“We would love to give people the experience of how a football club works and obviously, from the students’ perspective, that will be something that they will value greatly.

“We’ve already had a few interns getting full time jobs with us, so it’s hopefully a set up that works and hopefully both parties will benefit.”

Megan Cave, from the BU women’s varsity football team, took part in the training sessions at AFC Bournemouth.

“It’s been good to have this experience and see it all, and the coaching will help develop us as players and as a squad,” said the second year Sports Development and Coaching Sciences student.

“I’m interested in working somewhere like this in the future so it’s great to be able to get in here and make those professional links.”

A number of Bournemouth University graduates are already employed by AFC Bournemouth, including the club’s commercial director Rob Mitchell.

AFC Bournemouth chairman Jeff Mostyn said that he hoped the new partnership would also benefit the local community.

“This is the start of what we hope will be a really large and successful partnership, with two of the most esteemed organisations in the area joining forces to create centres of excellence,” he said.

“We like to think that the football club is the hub of the community and the contribution of the university will help this develop into an amazing relationship, bringing both local businesses and students in the area together.

“It is a great opportunity to develop the skills of young people both within the university and the football club.”

BU generates more than £1million a day spending in local economy


Bournemouth University, its staff and students bring more than £1 million a day to the South West region, a new study has revealed.

The BU Economic Impact Study 2013 looked at student, staff and university-wide spending and found that BU is worth £378 million to the South West region, and £252 million to the local conurbation.

It also revealed that BU supports over 3,145 full-time jobs in the South West – one job for every seven students at the university.

The study was produced by BU’s Professor John Fletcher and Dr Yeganeh Morakabati through staff and student surveys, interviews with major suppliers to BU and the university accounts.

Professor Fletcher said that BU was part of the “fabric of Dorset”.

“Although I am going to talk about numbers, these are lives, these are jobs, these are the people who shop in the shops and drive down the roads,” he said.

“It brings people in who you meet in the street, who enjoy the entertainment, who go to the shops and the beach and spend money, and it creates a vibrant and a young society.”

He added that students and their visiting friends and relatives spent more than £128 million in the area – often at times of year when there is less tourist trade – and that the total combined spending of the university was equivalent to 11,476 households in Dorset.

Speaking at the launch of the study, Bournemouth West MP Conor Burns added that BU’s benefit to the community also came in numerous, intangible ways.

He said: “When I’m asked about the university’s impact on Bournemouth and the region, I have an easy answer. I always say it’s priceless. I now have a number of statistics to hand to give a more informed answer in future.

“But there’s so much more to the students in Bournemouth and academic staff and for what the university does than these numbers – however great they are.”

He added: “Bournemouth would not just be economically and socially diminished without Bournemouth University, it would be decimated without Bournemouth University.”

Jonathan Clark, executive chairman of local digital agency Bright Blue Day, also spoke about the value of BU and its graduates.

The study found that the 5,879 graduates from BU this year will create an extra £1.3 billion in additional earning potential, but Jonathan added that they are also great advocates for the university and the area.

“People who leave and are in the early or later parts of their career are fantastic supporters of BU,” said Jonathan, whose agency has employed a number of BU graduates.

“They recommend BU at every turn, promote the area, come down here for weekends and bring friends to the area. It has an economic impact on us all.”

A similar Economic Impact Study in 2007 found that the total amount spent by BU contributed £241 million to the South West’s regional economic output – a figure that has now grown considerably.

BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney said: “BU has changed in that time, and our reputation has continued to grow.

“We also contribute in many less tangible ways, bringing a hugely skilled workforce to the area, support for local businesses and simply the introduction of a huge number of young people to help the region be lively, thriving and a good place to be.”

Read the Economic Impact Study 2013 in full

Key organisations to Business School recognised with ceremony

Key organisations with strong links to BU’s Business School were recognised at a presentation ceremony.

The Partners in Accounting and Finance Presentation Ceremony celebrated nine organisations which have key engagement with the Accounting, Finance and Economics framework.

Plaques were given to representatives from the organisations, as thanks for the input they have given as strategic partners, helping develop key employability skills in students and providing professional opportunities.

BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney opened the ceremony.

He said relationships such as these were at the heart of BU.

“Bournemouth University is immensely proud of its strong affiliations with businesses, organisations and professional bodies, at the local, regional, national and international level,” he said.

“[This] is a fantastic example of how the Business School engages with industry, ensuring that its courses are current and professionally relevant.”

The event was organised by Dr Phyllis Alexander, Framework Leader for Undergraduate Accounting and Finance courses at BU, and attended by the Mayors of Bournemouth and Poole.

The nine partners recognised at the ceremony were: the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA); EDF; J.P. Morgan; the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW); Mazars; Princecroft Willis; Santander Universities; Smith and Williamson; and the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).

Representatives from the organisations spoke about the initiatives they have worked on with BU, which include running skills sessions and lectures and offering training contracts and placement opportunities, among others.

Lesley Fox, a partner at Mazars accountancy firm, which has offices in Poole, said: “We have been involved with BU for many years and in various ways.

“Over the years, we have offered training contracts and various placement opportunities and we talk in lectures about life as a Chartered Accountant.

“We are delighted to be involved and looking forward to exploring ways we can further develop our working relationship with the university.”

The event also featured a keynote speech about the challenges for future accounting and finance professionals by Ian Marshall, Chairman of Markel International and Senior Advisor to the Bank of England Prudential Regulatory Authority.

Dean of the Business School Professor Roger Palmer said that the School aimed to make graduates distinctive through their exceptional employability and that partners such as those recognised at the ceremony played a large part.

He said: “Our partners are invaluable in providing not only their time, but the relevant and largely intangible insight that will inform our students and increase further their employability, to the benefit of the parties involved, the profession and wider society.”

Construction of BU’s state-of-the-art Student Centre is now underway


Professor John Vinney, University Vice-Chancellor, and Sue Sutherland OBE, University Board Chair, were joined by key people from construction firm Willmott Dixon to ceremonially break the ground that will become home to the six-storey, glass-fronted centre.

The £10.5 million facility will provide significant additional learning space and become the new home to the Students’ Union at BU (SUBU).

Professor Vinney said: “We are committed to providing world-class facilities for our students and this building will provide just that.”

“Students expect modern, fit-for-purpose facilities that promote learning and generate a rich experience and this fantastic new building will meet their aspirations.”

The new Student Centre will include learning and leisure facilities, offices for SUBU, social learning spaces, radio and media studios, a student advice centre, meeting space, accessible open-plan areas for student-focused services and a café.

The new centre will give SUBU much more opportunity to increase engagement and involvement in its activities.

Louise Bryant, SUBU President, said: “This is fantastic news for the Students’ Union and all students who will come to study here.

“SUBU offers advice, representation, and a whole range of extracurricular activities for students including clubs, societies and volunteering.

“This new centre will not only make it easier for students to access all of these services but it will also provide them with more space to learn, study and socialise.”

The Student Centre is expected to be fully operational by spring 2015.

Computer-generated image of what the new Student Centre will look like when it is fully operational in spring 2015

Computer-generated image of what the new Student Centre will look like


International events management conference takes place at BU


Events management professionals and academics from around the world were at Bournemouth University for the International Conference on Events.

Delegates came from as far afield as China and Australia for the three-day Making Waves conference, which was organised by the Association of Events Management Education (AEME) and held at BU’s Executive Business Centre.

The aim of the conference is to share cutting edge research, thinking and industry practice and a number of presentations and workshops took place on subjects ranging from music festivals to the London 2012 Olympics and business events.

Opening the conference, Dr Keith Wilkes, Dean of the School of Tourism at BU, said: “The world would be socially, academically and culturally poorer without events.

“The aim of the conference is to debate the way that we see, think and undertake research into events.”

There were also keynote speeches from important names in events management and education – including Nick Dodds, Managing Director of Festivals and Events International, and PR director Alistair Turner, who has led the Britain for Events promotional campaign.

Nick de Bois MP, who is chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for the UK Events Industry, gave the first keynote of the conference.

Nick said events contributed a huge amount to the UK economy and worldwide reputation, and academics and professionals need to work together to represent the industry.

“We know the industry provides invisible benefits and is a major contributor to the UK economy,” said Nick, who ran a marketing and events business before becoming an MP.

“When we host large events and conferences, what they are doing is not just leaving a large injection into local economies, but the opportunity for us to deliver long term growth into the UK.”

He added: “It’s very hard for one industry to bring about change, if it is developing its messages from diverse groups and sectors and effectively speaking from many different voices.

“I hope this conference will address how it will be able to support the case for change, the value of this industry, and how it teaches its young professionals for an industry that will, sure as anything, be very different from what it is today.”

More than 120 delegates from ten countries attended the conference, which was jointly organised by BU, AEME and universities in China and Australia, and sponsored by The Higher Education Academy.

Welcoming the delegates BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney said: “We have over 600 students from BU studying events and leisure, which I think makes us one of the largest in that particular sector anywhere in the world.

“The School of Tourism is a world leader in tourism research. I would like to say as the vice-chancellor how fantastic that School is and how important it is for the university.

“This is, therefore, a very appropriate venue for holding this year’s conference.”

Glenn Bowdin, chair of AEME, added: “I think that, as our industry moves forward with increasingly credible research to underpin it, industry and academics need to work together to provide a central voice.

“Hopefully, over the next few days we will have a great opportunity to network, to make future partnerships and hopefully develop collaborations and find like minds in terms of what we are talking about.”

BU ‘number one’ for work experience, study finds


Bournemouth University is top of the class when it comes to offering students work placements, a new study has found.

Research conducted by found that BU has the highest proportion of graduates with work experience on their CVs compared to other UK universities.

According to the study, nearly nine out of ten Bournemouth students graduating in 2013 have spent time in a workplace prior to graduation.

Gerry Wyatt, Operations Director at, said: “Bournemouth University graduates often have a comparatively substantial spell in the workplace, practical and relevant experience of their chosen career, enriched CVs, and an understanding of the importance of both teamwork and interpersonal skills.”

He added that work experience was crucial in helping graduates stand out in the recruitment process, demonstrating work ethic and career aptitude when they apply for a job.

“Those Bournemouth students that have taken advantage of the work placements available to them have also shown initiative, ambition and drive in finding and being chosen for such employment experiences,” said Gerry.

“Their future employers benefit by filling entry-level positions with graduates who have an understanding of the graduate’s chosen industry.”

Bournemouth University offers every Undergraduate student the opportunity to undertake a professional placement – typically 40 weeks in length – and has more students on a work placement than any other university in England.

Professor John Vinney, Vice-Chancellor of Bournemouth University, said, “This study is another example of the brilliant work taking place at Bournemouth University.

“I am truly proud of the student experience our graduates have and am happy to see that they are leaving BU prepared to succeed in their chosen fields.”

Read the article in full