Dr Triona Fitton is the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research’s academic lead for the Student Success project, and works to improve student attainment and retention in teaching as part of the University of Kent’s widening participation agenda. She also teaches and convenes undergraduate modules in Sociology and Cultural Studies, and coordinates and teaches on the school’s WriteRight! Programme, a series of workshops designed to offer accessible support to students in essay writing, literature searching, effective reading and other academic skills.
Dr Fitton has a first class BA in Sociology from Lancaster University, and an MA in Social Research and PhD in Sociology from the University of York, funded by an ESRC 1+3 award. Her PhD focused on the contemporary UK charity shop as a case study of the wider professionalisation of charity.
Dr Fitton came to the University of Kent in 2014 to work on a research project detailing the history of charitable giving to the University, funded as part of the University’s 50th Anniversary celebrations. The eight-month project culminated in a book, Hidden History: Philanthropy at the University of Kent, which published in June 2015. She subsequently designed and implemented the Centre for Philanthropy's successful distance learning Master's course in Philanthropic Studies, convening and teaching on three core modules. She was Director of Studies for the MA Philanthropic Studies from 2015 until 2018, when she moved into teaching undergraduate Sociology. She remains a Visiting Lecturer at Bayes Business School, City University, on their MsC in Grantmaking, Philanthropy & Social Investment.
Dr Fitton has continued her research on aspects of charity, second-hand consumption and inclusivity in education. She has spoken at numerous conferences about her work on the voluntary and philanthropy sectors, including ARNOVA, ERNOP and ISTR, and at the Working Class Studies Association and Social History Society annual conferences about inclusive pedagogy. She was one of the lead organisers of the ‘Second-Hand Cultures in Unsettled Times’ International Symposium in June 2021, and is currently working on a special issue of the JOMEC journal celebrating research and practice in second-hand consumption spaces.
She has recently published on inclusive education, particularly for non-traditional or practitioner students, and is currently working on a BSA-funded project to collate practice guides to support the place of race and ethnicity in British Sociology, alongside Dr Barbara Adewumi and Dr Alexander Hensby.
At undergradulate level, Dr Fitton lectures on cultural studies and sociology.
At postgraduate level she lectures on philanthropy.
Dr Fitton is interested in supervising students wishing to explore any of the topics listed under her research interests.