Giving Thanks & The Wall of Excellence
“A little consideration; a little thought for others makes all the difference” – Eeyore.
As students, we have spoken a great amount about how difficult the last year and a half have been for us. We’ve spoken about the various challenges associated with the abrupt transition to online learning on our courses, keeping connected with various aspects of the Warwick community, being a pandemic graduate and much more.
However, now that we are nearing to the end of exam season (whoop! 🎉), I want to ask you to give a thought to the non-student community within Warwick. To have a think about the challenges they have faced during this very strange time. If you’ve had an honest conservation with one of your tutors, I’m sure overwhelmed would be a word to describe how they’ve been feeling, although that doesn’t near enough cover it.
Something I have realised during my time at uni is that as much as we need some positive words of encouragement to give us a little boost (like getting a red mushroom on Mario Kart), so do members of staff! It’s something that they really value and during these tough times, even more so.
So, what I would love for you to do right now (or put in a reminder for after a break from exams) is spare a few minutes to write a thank you note to at least one member of staff who has made a difference to your experience during this time or more generally if you’re soon to graduate. Don’t just write it – SEND IT!
In addition to this, I wanted to make you aware of The Wall of Excellence in case you hadn’t heard of this yet. Thanks to Liz, Psychology’s Director of Teaching and Learning & Senior Teaching Fellow for sharing this with us! Members of the WIHEA (Warwick International Higher Education Academy) Teaching Recognition & Reward Learning Circle recently launched the Wall of Excellence in order to celebrate all of our achievements and recognise those who have brought some light to us.
Here’s a statement from Dr Elisabeth Blagrove (Co-Chair of the WIHEA Teaching Recognition and Reward Learning Circle) explaining a bit more about the purpose of the Wall of Excellence:
‘Life at University can be challenging at the best of times; for all of us, staff & students alike. This year has presented challenges none could have anticipated, but there have been highlights too. We’ve shown strength and support for each other in ways we could have never imagined. The Warwick Wall of Excellence is a way to acknowledge, thank and celebrate anyone who has made that difference to your life at Warwick over these last few difficult months; reach out and let that person know!’
It’s a wonderful initiative, so please do get involved here: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/cross_fac/academy/activities/learningcircles/researchteaching/everyday_excellence/commentswall/
The list is endless of who you can choose to thank, but here is just a small handful of examples:
- Your personal tutor (for example) for their kindness in checking up on you at times when you have struggled.
- A lecturer who has gone the extra mile to make their online classes more engaging. Perhaps one who has made you feel content in their online lessons if it is something that you had been particularly anxious about. Even just let them know how much you enjoyed their module!
- The admin team who have no doubt been working extremely hard behind the scenes with unpredictable timetabling, dealing with numerous tech issues, and constantly keeping us up-to-date.
- Cleaners, maintenance, and the library staff who have had to stay on campus this whole time to keep essential services running.
- Someone, such as your Director of Student Experience and Progression, who has made sure that you’ve had at least a little bit of a social life. Someone who has made that extra effort to make sure that you stay connected to the community.
- A member of Warwick Wellbeing Services or Widening Participation for providing you any desperately needed support.
Whoever you choose, let them know that they are appreciated. Let them know that you recognise how much work they put into their jobs and in supporting us ☺️.