Posts tagged skills training
The jury is still out (I think) on whether or not we have skipped straight to winter. It certainly feels that way! It’s a couple of months since I mentioned what was going on around here, so thought now – a rainy, windy, cold Monday morning – was as good a time as any to bring you up to speed.
How does the summer go by so quickly? Am amazed that it is the 20th of August already. Before you know it Christmas will be here.
It’s been a strange couple of weeks around here, mostly because I’ve not been delivering workshops at all. I find myself going a bit stir crazy after a few weeks. And it seems like there will be a few more before my regular clients need me to deliver workshops, so I could be really loopy by the time I’m back in front of a seminar room full of PGRs.
There have been lots of things going on around here of late, which has been great but has meant that I’ve not had the chance to write about them!
KESS GRADschools: in June I directed three GRADschools for the KESS programme. Directing is a bit strange; on some programmes, despite being front-and-centre for a lot of time it can feel like you’re a bit removed from the group. I’ve talked to other people about directing in the past, and of course this can vary wildly, but I’ve heard other people say similar. I didn’t get that a lot on the KESS GRADschools so far; what makes them really interesting is how personal they can feel. With smaller cohorts you can really get to know people a little more – and at the very least get to know everyone’s name. I’m facilitating on another KESS GRADschool next week, so am hoping that the weather improves!
Viva Survivor: I was in Manchester yesterday to deliver a Viva Survivor workshop; it’s two years since I did the first one, and I can’t believe that it has been that long, or quite how many I’ve done since that first one. It was doing Viva Survivor that I really started to feel confident with my facilitation style, and it’s been a motivator for lots of other ideas and opportunities since then. Including…
Viva Survivors: …this one! The Viva Survivors Podcast is going well; with so much work for KESS and then a short holiday, it was tough to stay on top of editing new material to put out. But last week I was able to upload two new podcasts, interviews with Dr Jennifer Cromwell and Dr Julia Collins. I’m conducting more interviews in the near future, and always on the look out for more people to talk to, so please get in touch! And follow @VivaSurvivors on Twitter (and me too).
New Ideas, New Challenges: August is going to be a quiet month in terms of going out and delivering workshops; I kind of expect that now, it’s part of working in the kind of area that I do. So, a month long holiday, right? WRONG! I’ll be working on new resources, a couple of projects that I have started, working even more to try and make Viva Survivors a really valuable resource for PhD candidates, and I’ll probably end up doing some odd jobs around the house as well.
OK, so in and amongst all that I might find time to take a day off…
Manchester GRADschool: that’s really on my mind! I’m off to Manchester tomorrow, and you can follow news and updates on it by following the hashtag #MancGrads12. I’m leading on two of the sessions in the first two days, and I’ll get some pictures to show how things go with them.
Viva Survivors Podcast: I recorded my second interview for this project on Friday! Very exciting, and I’ll be recording number three today. After this week I’ll start to edit the interviews, and towards the end of the month I will be launching a separate website to host them. If anyone wants to contribute their viva and PhD story to the podcast please get in touch! And if you’re a PGR and have any questions that you want me to ask people or cover in the series, drop me a line.
Alternative title, “What Have I Let Myself In For?”
I’ve been inspired by several things over the last few years when it comes to presenting things. In the first case I was pulled away from Powerpoint/OpenOffice Impress by the siren song of Prezi. I love making Prezis, but I get obsessive about the details, much as I did with Powerpoint. More recently, I’ve felt a growing urge to draw more in workshops: to just use a flipchart/whiteboard and get drawing. This is largely down to reading a few good books – Gamestorming and The Back of the Napkin spring to mind – and also seeing a great TED talk by Sunni Brown on the importance of doodling.
Some people do round-ups at the end of the week. It feels like I do them every day for myself. In the spirit of “just because” here are the things going through my head this Monday morning:
Seth’s latest blog post: I think that there is definitely something in today’s post. As ever, he’s put it very concisely, but then it doesn’t need any extra language or description. Instead of appealing to a “face your fears” mindset, why not think about whether other people fear something as well? If you then can do it, you have something which is valuable. Good provocation.
In this post: a few thoughts after a workshop on the supervisor relationship from last week
Last week was not all about FYSWs and Valentine’s Day, I also went to Manchester to deliver a workshop on Managing the Supervisor Relationship. It’s a workshop that is always slightly tricky to prepare for, as more often than not the whole workshop pivots on the motivations of the participants who come along.
In this post: thoughts and pictures from last week’s First Year Skills Workshop
As I sat down to write something made me go back and check my notes from the last few years of work. My suspicions were confirmed: last week I did my 25th First Year Skills Workshop at the University of Liverpool! Where did the time go?
In this post: thoughts on my last few days at the Collaborative Researcher, particularly about web presence
It was great to be asked back to facilitate for the second pilot of Vitae’s Collaborative Researcher programme. The first one last year was very enjoyable – both in terms of the delivery and what I got from it as well – and so I had been looking forward to this one for some time. It was a good way to start off the new year of delivering workshops.