Wednesday, September 23, 2015

JYC...coming to late night television near you!

So, HuffPo Live is fairly cool.

But even cooler...the Jerusalem Youth Chorus has an exciting announcement!

Hint - it involves late night comedy and this guy named Steven Colbert.

BE EXCITED! And tune in, of course. :)

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

International Day of Peace: The Jerusalem Youth Chorus

Continuing the theme of "people I know doing amazing things": Check out this interview on HuffPo Live with The Jerusalem Youth Chorus:

Micah and some of the students are in the US for a whirlwind tour of the New York area focused around International Day of Peace. If you don't know what that's about, check out

May we all do our part to make our world a more loving, dignified, and peaceful place to be and every day.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Grace is in Time!

A mega shoutout to 2014 Marshall Scholar superstar Grace Young. Grace is an oceanographer studying at Oxford...and just happens to be doing the graphic design for my book on the Kuwait Dive Team (which will be coming out very soon!).

Those of you interested in the ocean, science, environmentalism, or young people doing cool things: Check out Grace's feature in Time Magazine online:


Friday, September 18, 2015

Home at last!

After an incredible but very intense summer of travel with Greg, and then a completely insane ten days of writing and editing my research report for my PhD upgrade while at Holt Hall teaching, welcoming the new Marshall Scholars, and nipping into Norwich to greet the new MSc Water Security students, I am now home (more or less) for the foreseeable future. 
There are many, many projects to catch up on. But first and foremost among them: sleep. If anyone needs me, I'll be barricaded in my loft hiding for the next few days. ;)
(Not really. The new "Doctor Who" debuted today; I'll be hosting a viewing - an honour earned via the virtue of having a TV license. And I have this vague idea of managing to get to the Unitarian church on Sunday, but we'll see what happens.)

Saturday, September 12, 2015

The Americans are coming, the Americans are coming!

Post-colonial invasion time!

The brand new spankin' batch of Marshall Scholars have arrived in the UK. The 2015 Class spent a few days in DC with the British Embassy getting to know each other and the programme, and are now in London on their formal orientation programme here. 

Current Marshall Scholars are taking them out in small groups for dinner tonight. Thursday evening is a formal welcome reception hosted by the Foreign Commonwealth Office, and then they scatter to the four winds Friday. I'll be taking the new UEA Scholar to Norwich, where I'll settle her in and then go meet the new MSc Water Security cohort. 

I guess this means school is starting back up! Happy fall, everyone. 

Back to Norfolk!

It has been far too long. Months! But after a week of almost total house arrest finalising my research report and proposal for my PhD upgrade committee, I'm off today to Holt Hall. 

After the success of the DESiGN residential in June, we were asked to hold a reunion for the students. A handful of them are coming to the Hall on Sunday for a day of frolicking about the grounds and catching up with friends. Hoping the weather holds for them - it's a bit grey at the moment!

Then we have a new batch of students and school partners coming for a Bright Futures residential Monday-Wednesday. One of my closest friends through the Marshall, as well as a PhD mate from King's College London, will be joining us as mentors for the programme. I'm excited to show off Holt Hall and the initiative to them. But first...a sentimental train ride to Norwich in order to get there! Nothing like an afternoon on a train writing and chatting with good folks whilst beautiful English countryside rolls along next to you. :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

K+ Reunion

I went onto campus today for the first time in several weeks. Reunion time! The K+ Summer Spotlight Programme held their feedback tutorials tonight. I got to check in with the students I taught in July. Schools started in the last few days, so their summers are over and back to ‘real’ school they go. They got to start their last year of A levels on a good note, as I gave back their marked essays and they all did incredibly well. Of 14 students, I gave three 1st distinctions and eight 2:1s. Given that we mark them at a grade level higher than their current key stage (e.g., these sixteen/seventeen-year-olds were being graded as university students), this was quite impressive.
The evening also included the required cheesy trivia quiz and handing out of certificates of completion. As well as pizza for dinner, of course. Given that I’ve been to America recently, my students and the staff got to top off dinner with peanut butter rice krispies with butterscotch chocolate frosting. “Thanks for the American heart attack”, as one of the students put it.

Friday, September 4, 2015

RGS-IBG in Exeter

The last trip Greg and I took together this summer was to southwest England 1-4 September. 

The 2015 Annual Conference of the Royal Geographical Society was held at the University of Exeter this week. The theme was "Geographies of the Anthropocene", exploring links between nature and society, both massively significant in a geologic sense and the more micro interactions we as humans all have with our environment. 

I spoke and chaired at several sessions; details about those will come out as blog posts start happening on various university websites. I got to brag about the Kuwait Dive Team, get some pushback on the analytical framework for my PhD, and show off the residential programmes at Holt Hall I help run. All very grand!

Greg joined me for a few evenings of dinner near Exeter's gorgeous Cathedral Md adorable waterfront (along the River Exe). He also day tripped to Exmouth, the nearest proper coastal city, and walked along the glorious Jurassic Coast (yes, that is its real name). I stayed in Exmouth two+ years ago during a Marshall class retreat, so nostalgia abounded. 

And now, it's homeward we go. Greg takes off back to America in a week; my PhD upgrade is due! And so life slowly gets back to normal. Whatever normal means. ;)