New pilot minibus service between South Kensington and Hammersmith/Imperial West

Imperial’s Estates Facilities Team will be trialling a free hourly minibus service next term for staff and students travelling between the South Kensington Campus and the Hammersmith Hospital Campus and Woodlane Studios on the Imperial West Campus. The buses will operate twice an hour between 8.00 and 18:00, Monday to Friday, throughout the Autumn term. The pilot service is being rolled out in response to feedback from Travel Survey publicised in Staff Briefing #88 which captured the views of 1264 members of the Imperial community. Passenger usage from operating this service will be evaluated in combination with the survey results to consider the possibility of permanent provision of a bus service in the future between the sites.

Deborah Evanson
Press and Communications Officer
Imperial College London

The “go-to” App for Imperial College Masters students

Imperial mobile

A Department of Surgery and Cancer administrator Susan Clark teamed up recently with Amir Rana, Junior Software Engineer, Web Development, in the pilot phase of an Imperial Mobile Initiative. They held a training session for administrators to learn how to build an App for their Masters’ programmes using the College licensed software Ombiel. The training provided an opportunity to learn and share the challenges and resolutions of applying different course structures to the App.

The story behind the initiative goes back to March 2013 when Susan wrote to IT. She asked for an App that would incorporate electronic student evaluations and the facility to push out essential course information to students. Saul Batzofin, Infrastructure Programme Manager, replied to Susan’s request with immediate help, first by training using Qualtrics, a recently acquired survey software. The evaluations had already been customised for the Department of Surgery and Cancer courses by Dr Kirsten Dalrymple, Senior Research Fellow and Co-Course lead MEd Surgical Education and they will shortly be accessible via the MEd App. This summer will see Susan working on improvements to the existing surveys and Apps, getting them ready for the 2014 / 2015 cohort. New students will have a 10 minute orientation in the use of the App in Module 1 of their respective Masters Programme, October 2014.

As for the future, the Department of Surgery and Cancer have a new MSc Masters programme pending; a move to a modularised structure that fits well with the surgical trainees career pathway. This year’s collaboration and initiative has paved the way for the use of the App for this new Programme, with the potential to go beyond administrative technology into Mobile learning.

Saul Batzofin emphasized the versatility of their solution; “Imperial Mobile works on mobile phones, tablets and desktops so rather than us telling people where and how to engage with College, we allow them to choose the device and location. So our ambition for Imperial Mobile is to give people relevant information and applications where and when they want it. We are still quite early in our journey but are working hard to add ever more useful functionality to our App.” Susan added that administrators can improve support for learning and teaching with their own collaborative contributions to this journey by engaging with the technology now provided by the College, when changes to timetables and key information need to be pushed out to students, the Go-to App could be invaluable.

Susan Clark
Postgraduate Education Administrator
Department of Surgery and Cancer

Elevator pitches RDC conference 25th September

Pfizer is inviting interested individuals to apply to participate in an “elevator pitch” session to be held on the 25th September in London. This will form part of the Pfizer Rare Disease Consortium (RDC) Inaugural Symposium, which will be a prestigious event bringing together senior leaders across academia and Pfizer. The call area is “future rare disease therapies”, covering any disease area within the rare disease spectrum (although applications in core themes of haematology, neuromuscular, pulmonary and cardiac would be preferred). Applicants would be requested to “pitch” their idea in a 3 minute slot (without slides) followed by a short Q&A with immediate feedback from a panel. Interested applicants should contact Vjera Magdalenic-Moussavi on v.magdalenic@imperial.ac.uk by the deadline of 1st August.

About RDC: The Rare Disease Consortium is an agreement between Pfizer and GMEC which provides scientists from the GMEC partners – Cambridge University, Imperial College London, King’s College London, Queen Mary University London, University College London and Oxford University – the opportunity to work with Pfizer scientists on joint drug discovery programmes. Bringing together the scientific and clinical excellence of the Universities and Academic Health Science Centres in the GMEC cluster with the drug discovery and development skills of Pfizer has the potential to accelerate the translation of basic science into a new generation of innovative medicines for the treatment of these debilitating and life-threatening conditions. 

Dr Vjera Magdalenic-Moussavi
Corporate and Enterprise Partnerships Manager
Faculty of Medicine