Dean's Report

MGSE Back to Basics Week

Next Monday sees the start of our ‘Back to Basics’ week at MGSE and I encourage you all to take the opportunity to create some space in your work life, to focus on your core work and minimise emails and meetings as much as possible. There has been an abundance of positive feedback about this initiative so while this is voluntary, I do hope most MGSE staff will embrace ‘Back to Basics’ week. Many of us feel the pressure of working from home due to the growing numbers of emails and tasks, however, consciously taking the time to take stock and re-prioritise can be invigorating and lead to new ways of working that could free up more of your time. I hope you can take this opportunity to be creative in how you spend your time. You may want to set yourselves a goal for a project you have been wanting to start or finish in this week or just take the time to concentrate on particular aspects of your work. Whatever you do I hope that by the end of the week you will have discovered some extra time and perhaps adopted some new behaviours. It is also an opportune time to check in on your own wellbeing, to take some time to look after yourself and to reach out to colleagues.

We are pleased to note that the Faculty of Arts has now joined our initiative and is organising their own ‘Back to Basics’ week.

I look forward to hearing how you all went and I have provided some suggestions about ways to maximise the benefits of the week.

Pandemic Reset Program

Yesterday afternoon an email was distributed  to staff from the Provost Mark Considine and the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Jim McCluskey outlining the Pandemic Reset Program, its five recovery workstreams and the four foundational areas of University focus to ensure appropriate operational frameworks are in place to support the changes. One of these areas is the Professional Services Redesign which involves the redesign and extension of the professional shared services model across the University. Keryn Negri and I are heavily involved in the work that is underway to reposition professional shared services, highlighting the particular needs of our School to ensure any new shared service model meets our requirements. The Pandemic Reset Program website provides information and FAQs which will be constantly updated as information comes to hand. I appreciate what a difficult time this is for staff and please feel free to contact me, Keryn or any of our Executive team if you would like to discuss any issues surrounding the Pandemic Reset Plan.

Melbourne MicroCert Program

Last Wednesday saw the launch of the first fully online Melbourne MicroCert (MMC) to be taught across the University. It is also the first and only (so far) business-to-business MMC that MSPACE has developed for the University. The microcredential titled ‘Evidence Based Teaching and Learning Melbourne MicroCert’ was developed by Dr Daniela Acquaro and Dr Melody Anderson in consultation with MSPACE as part of the Melbourne TAPP Project. The MicroCert is currently being piloted with a group of 11 teachers with release to the public in the coming months. Congratulations to all involved in this project and I’m sure it is the first of many MicroCerts MGSE will develop.

Propelling Education Series

The webinar series ‘Propelling education through a COVID-19 world’ concluded last Tuesday with the full panel discussing what practical actions are required to bring real change to the education sector now and after COVID-19. The series attracted a large and engaged audience of over 2,000 people from across 28 countries who submitted 345 questions to the panel. The recordings of the webinar have already attracted nearly 3,000 views. My thanks to Professor Janet Clinton for her passion and hard work in bringing this series to fruition and for so expertly hosting and guiding the panel. Thank you also to the panel, Professors John Hattie, Yong Zhao and Sandra Milligan for their stimulating contributions and to Drs Daniela Acquaro, Melitta Hogarth and Matt Harrison for their provocative questions. This has been an excellent example of how MGSE can showcase its expertise and reach a wide audience.

Congratulations to MGSE Staff

I was delighted to hear the joyful news for Jessica Gerrard and her family of the arrival of a new baby, Aster Harry Gerrard Thompson born on the 18th August. They are all doing well and I’m sure you join me in wishing them the very best as they settle into the bliss of a new baby in the family.

An arrival of a different order is the news that both Associate Professor Kylie Smith and Susie Reay have received the University of Melbourne Bronze medal for 25 years of service to the University. Congratulations to Kylie and Susie for this achievement which acknowledges their great contributions to the University.