University News: February 2018

Call for a rapid negotiated settlement to the USS pension dispute

The current national dispute results from planned changes to the national pension scheme for university staff, and many of those working at Bangor University will be affected by the proposals.

Bangor University has stated that it is keen for there to be a rapid negotiated settlement to this dispute. 

Publication date: 26 February 2018

St Gerard’s School are Top of the Bench!

A team from St Gerard’s School in Bangor are this year’s north Wales heat winners of the Top of the Bench competition run by Bangor University’s School of Chemistry.

Publication date: 26 February 2018

Hummit, the new app released by a Bangor University student

We’ve all had that tune in our heads that we can’t name.  Well, Joey Elliott, aged 22 from Oswestry,  has developed a mobile app to resolve that problem!  His app lets users find the names for those annoying tunes in their head such as the title of a catchy song heard on the radio and then later, you cannot remember. Joey created the idea after he found himself having this recurring problem and is hoping to help others in similar situations.

Publication date: 23 February 2018

Knowing how and where to look reduces driving risks

Training young and new drivers so that they pay attention to their peripheral vision could reduce road traffic accidents. Road traffic accidents are one of the leading causes of death globally and young novice drivers are the most likely to be involved.

Publication date: 21 February 2018

More Green Less Screen!

Could you put down your devices and enjoy nature?

That was the question that Bangor University’s Sustainability Lab and Botanic Garden asked students, staff and the local community last week as part of the UK University community’s national celebration of Go Green Week.

Publication date: 21 February 2018

National bursaries for Bangor's engineering talent

Three students from Bangor University have received Engineering Horizons Bursaries from the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). The bursaries are awarded to students who are passionate about engineering and have taken up a place on an engineering or technology degree course which has been accredited by the IET.

Publication date: 21 February 2018

Martial arts can improve your attention span and alertness long term – new study

Martial arts require a good level of physical strength, but those who take up training need to develop an incredible amount of mental acuity, too.

Mental strength is so important to martial arts that researchers have found karate experts’ stronger punching force may be down to a better control of muscle movement in the brain, rather than increased muscular strength. Other studies have also found that children who practice Taekwondo improved in maths test scores, and behaviour.

This article by Ashleigh Johnstone, PhD Researcher in Cognitive Neuroscience, at te School of Psychology was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 20 February 2018

Finding new ways to identify and treat the most challenging brain cancers

A large European research collaboration is bringing new technology to bear to combat two of the most aggressive brain cancers.

The research project combines the expertise of leading biologists and electronic engineers to develop innovative microtechnology devices that will ultimately be able to identify and treat Glioblastoma multiforme and Medulloblastoma cancer stem cells.

Publication date: 19 February 2018

Tesni Evans serves up stunning win at National Championships

Tesni Evans, a Bangor University Local Athlete Bursary winner, recorded a stunning victory at the Women’s Final of the National Squash Championships in Manchester on Sunday (18 February), becoming the first Welsh woman to do so and further cementing her position as the most successful female squash player Wales has produced.

Publication date: 19 February 2018

Starfish can see in the dark (among other amazing abilities)

If you go down to the shore today, you’re sure of a big surprise. Many will have witnessed the presence of a starfish or two when visiting the seashore or a public aquarium. Starfish come in an exciting range of colours and sizes, but have you ever given a thought to how this multi-armed wonder manages to exist in our oceans when it’s so unlike the other animals we know?

This article by Coleen Suckling, Lecturer in Marine Biology, at the School of Ocean Sciences was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 16 February 2018

Welsh people want more done to prevent illness and improve their health - even if it means spending less on healthcare

53 per cent of people in Wales agree that more money should be spent on preventing illness and less on treating it. Only 15 per cent disagreed.

The national Stay Well in Wales survey, run by Public Health Wales and Bangor University, found that the Welsh public have a strong preference for more public health regulation and intervention.

Publication date: 16 February 2018

Positive psychology helps brain injury survivors recover with a better outlook on life

In the UK alone, nearly 350,000 people are admitted to hospital each year with an acquired brain injury, caused by anything from road traffic accidents, falls, and assaults, to vascular disorders such as strokes. And this number is growing.

This article by was Leanne Rowlands, PhD researcher in Neuropsychology, at the School of Psychology was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 15 February 2018

Bangor Celebrates Chinese New Year

Bangor University’s Confucius Institute brings its annual Chinese New Year event back to Bangor on 24 February, with a colourful dragon parade and Chinese gala to celebrate 2018, Year of the Dog.

Publication date: 14 February 2018

UK criminal justice is at breaking point after years of unstable leadership

The criminal justice system in England and Wales is failing victims and witnesses to such an extent that MPs say it is now “close to breaking point”. Years of budget cuts and changes have led to a justice system that is in meltdown.

With such a crisis at hand, one would expect some kind of “strong and stable” leadership from the UK government.

This article by Stephen Clear, Lecturer in LawBangor University was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 14 February 2018

Hen Blant Bach nominated for International Film & Television Award

A programme, of which Bangor University was an integral part, has received international praise by reaching the 2018 New York Festivals International Film and Television Awards final.

Hen Blant Bach, a production by Darlun production company is nominated in the Community Portraits category. The series was a new factual format for S4C, and followed the social experiment which brought older people and nursery children together to share their day care.  The programmes documented the transformative positive effects that can be brought about by bringing these two groups together.

Publication date: 12 February 2018

Wales-China Festival to be held at Pontio, Bangor

A new festival produced and curated by Invertigo Theatre Company and Pontio will take place during the Chinese New Year weekend (16 - 18 February 2018), exploring the creative connection between Wales and China.

Eclectic performances, pop-up events, films, a special Chinese specials menu at Gorad restaurant and family-friendly activities will showcase the cultures, languages and art of both countries. The first of its kind in Wales, this multi-lingual festival provides a platform for British East Asian stories, and enables collaborations between Welsh and Chinese musicians, playwrights and artists.

Publication date: 12 February 2018

Creative Writing Lecturer reaches prestigious long-list

Lisa Blower, a Creative Writing Lecturer at Bangor University's School of English Literature is one of ten authors long-listed for the prestigious 2018 Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award.

This international Award promotes and celebrate the excellence of the modern short story and attracts entries from among the world’s finest writers. Its £30,000 prize is the most generous prize for a single short story in the English language. 

Publication date: 11 February 2018

Appointment of the Chair of Council

Bangor University has announced the appointment of Marian Wyn Jones as the new Chair of its governing body, the Council.

She becomes the first woman to Chair the Council since the university was founded in 1884, and she succeeds Lord Elis-Thomas who stood down last year.

Publication date: 9 February 2018

Reviewing bioenergy resources for construction and other non-energy uses

Bangor University’s BioComposites Centre (BC) has been selected to lead a consortium to deliver a review on ‘The potential for using bioenergy resources for construction and other non-energy uses’ for the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), a non-governmental advisory body. This review will feed into the updated Bioenergy Review 2018, which will be published by the CCC in the autumn.

Publication date: 8 February 2018

Student work to contribute to challenging sepsis

Rates of sepsis are on the increase. This rare but serious complication which can happen as a result of an infection can be life- threatening.

One chemistry student is hoping that her research work will contribute to the fight against this infection.

Publication date: 8 February 2018

Five ingenious ways snakes manipulate their bodies to hunt and survive

Do a quick search for “snakes” in the news and you’ll find people terrified, bitten or, sadly, killed by these creatures. Many of us fear their slithering ways and researchers have found evidence which suggests that humans have evolved a tendency to spot snakes more easily than other animals.

But there are more than 3,500 species of snake in the world, and they have been around for 167m years – so they must be doing something right.

This article by Tom Major, PhD candidate in Biological Sciences, Bangor University  was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 7 February 2018

Student volunteers help to support the recovery of mental health patients

People with complex mental health problems are being supported in their recovery thanks to the efforts of a dedicated group of student volunteers.

For the past 20 years kind-hearted students from Bangor University have volunteered their time to run various therapeutic groups for patients on Ysbyty Gwynedd’s Hergest Mental Health Un

Publication date: 5 February 2018

Bangor University supporting beaver reintroductions for World Wetlands Day

Bangor University has thrown its support behind the reintroduction of beavers in Wales to mark World Wetlands Day (2.2.18).

Scientists from the university are calling for more support of the Welsh Beaver Project which aims to bring back the iconic animal to the country.

Publication date: 2 February 2018

DNA pinpoints river animals in the here-and-now

New research proves that environmental DNA survives for less than two days in small fast-flowing rivers and so provides highly localised and current information on species composition.  This is crucial new evidence as biologists turn increasingly to new DNA sampling techniques to assess aquatic ecosystem health.

Publication date: 2 February 2018

Dwylo’n dweud/Speaking Hands

Following the annual Clust i wrando/Lend me Your Ears … conference (2017) held in Neuadd Powis, Bangor University, in June last year and on the basis of delegates’ suggestions, a scheme was established to offer British Sign Language (BSL) to all Welsh medium nursery schools in Wales (Mudiad Meithrin). This is the first scheme of its kind in Welsh.

Publication date: 1 February 2018