University and U3A present research showcase

The University and the University of the Third Age (U3A) presented a number of joint and individual research projects at special event in the Gulbenkian Theatre on the University’s Canterbury campus on May 28.

The event was attended by representatives from both institutions and members of the public who were able to see via short talks, research presentations and posters, as well as workshops, performances, guided visits and demonstrations, the work that had been done.

Over the years, the Canterbury and District group of U3A has carried out several projects with the University and other organisations. The projects presented during the day ranged from cancer research to comedy and machine learning to losing memory.

The event was organised by Will Wollen, Senior Lecturer in Kent’s School of Arts and Faculty Director of Public Engagement (Humanities). He said: ‘The U3A is a valuable resource for researchers and local members can make really valuable contributions to research projects. The event celebrated the relationship and shows that our surrounding community can be at the heart of what we do as a flourishing university, challenging minds and lifting hearts.  I’m grateful to all staff, students and U3A members who contributed.’

Rona Hodges, Research Coordinator for Canterbury and District U3A, said the group was very excited by the ongoing research collaboration with the University, affording opportunities to the U3A that continue to develop for their mutual benefit.

Sam Mauger, National Chief Executive of the U3A, attended on the day, and commented on the unique relationship between the University and the U3A’s local branch. She said the collaboration is a great example of what can be achieved from a partnership between a University and the U3A and that it is a testament to the University of Kent that they have worked with the U3A as equal partners.

The event finished with a short performance of a new ‘Haka’ from Moving Memory Dance and U3A Workshop participants in the Colyer-Fergusson Hall.