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ProtectED Conversations Blog: London 19/07/19

We had the pleasure of holding a ProtectED Conversations event at UCL last month – the second in an ongoing series of talks where higher education professionals, academics and ProtectED Member institutions meet to discuss issues impacting student safety and wellbeing.

The theme of July’s ProtectED Conversation was ‘Staff and Student Resilience within HE’, and it was a privilege to hear from ProtectED Founder Members and Keynote Speakers on their approaches and success stories around improving student resilience.

Hearing from Founder Members

Opening the event were speakers from two ProtectED Founder Member institutions: Lesley OKeeffe – Deputy Director of Academic and Student Services at Brunel University London, and Simon Lee – Deputy Director, Resilience, Sport and Wellbeing at Teesside University. Both shared their ProtectED journey to date.

First steps

After hearing about ProtectED, Lesley arranged a meeting with her Head of Security. Both read the ProtectED Code of Practice beforehand, and were able to get a conversation started about where the University sits in relation to these requirements. Lesley observed that, while at the size of the document can feel intimidating, working through it turned out to be a valuable fact-finding exercise which “led to some key relationship building between the appropriate people and departments across the University.” Recognising the scope of the task ahead of them, Lesley explained that she was fortunate to have assistance from a recent Brunel graduate:

“We are part of the Ambitious Futures graduate scheme and ProtectED became a six-month project for one of our graduate students. She was able to work through the Code of Practice, speaking to staff, students and differ