“A celebration of our staff” – the postponed Sussex Education Awards 2020

Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell and Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Education and Innovation Claire Smith, hosted the Sussex Education Awards 2020 on the evening of 1 December via a Zoom webinar. 

Originally scheduled for last spring, nominations for the awards were received in February 2020, but the ceremony had to be postponed due to the pandemic. 

Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell said: 

“My sincere congratulations to all the winners and those shortlisted and to everyone nominated. I’ve certainly found this evening a real inspiration and I hope this has given all of us a boost.”

Over 200 people attended the online ceremony, to celebrate their colleagues, hear the shortlist and of course to find out who had won in the five categories; The Better World, Learning Together, Teaching to Disrupt, Transformative Technology and the coveted Sussex Spirit Award.

Professor Claire Smith, Chair of the award’s Judging Panel said:

“Judging the awards has been a truly rewarding experience. To hear about the ways in which our staff are inspiring and engaging students – from unusual lecture styles, to innovative uses of technology, to showing how we can all play our part in improving life for others – has been absolutely incredible.”

More than 400 nominations were received at the beginning of the year and the ceremony announced the 33 shortlistees and 21 eventual winners.

The full shortlist and list of winners

Professor Smith presented The Better World category, which celebrates staff who, through creative and entrepreneurial ways, are making a positive impact in the local community and wider world, those shortlisted were:

  • Natasha Mansley (Education and Social Work)
  • Emma Newport (Media, Arts and Humanities)
  • Katy Petherick (Life Sciences)
  • Chris Sandom (Life Sciences)
  • Kate Shaw (Mathematical and Physical Sciences)
  • John Walker (Media, Arts and Humanities)

And the winners were:

  • Emma Newport (Media, Arts and Humanities) for her work establishing and developing Sussex Writes, in which students work together with Emma to develop creative writing workshops that they then deliver to local secondary schools 
  • Katy Petherick (Life Sciences) for her outreach work particularly for equality, diversity and inclusion for LGBTQ+ persons and the black community at Sussex
  • Chris Sandom (Life Sciences) for his rewilding work and for the relentless passion he shows his students

Dr Graeme Pedlingham, Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Student Experience, presented the Learning Together award, which celebrates teams of both staff and students whose collaboration in either an academic or an administrative context has led to improvements in teaching and/or supporting the student experience, those shortlisted were:

  • Susan Robbins & James Bartoli-Edwards (Media Arts and Humanities) 
  • Sussex Clinical Legal Education Team (Law, Politics and Sociology)

 And the winners were:

  • Susan Robbins & James Bartoli-Edwards (Media, Arts and Humanities) for their collaborative project highlighting the experience of Evaluative Judgement.

Postgraduate Part Time Officer Matthew Moors, from Sussex Students’ Union, announced the Teaching to Disrupt, which recognises those nominees who have dared to be different, surprising, innovative and pioneering, and have inspired their students’ critical or entrepreneurial imagination, those shortlisted were:

  • Andy Clark (Media, Arts and Humanities)
  • Andy Field (Psychology)
  • Monica Masucci (Business School)
  • Katy Oswald (Institute of Development Studies)
  • Joanne Paul (Media, Arts and Humanities)
  • Zahid Pranjol (Life Sciences)
  • Joanna Richardson (Life Sciences)
  • Katharina Rietzler (Media, Arts and Humanities)

And the winners were:

  • Andy Field (Psychology) for his innovative and creative approach to teaching statistics
  • Monica Masucci (Business School) for her participatory ‘Dragon’s Den’ style final competition where students pitch their ideas to a judging panel of industry professionals and academics and the winning team receive funding from a donor to progress their ideas
  • Katy Oswald (Institute of Development Studies) for her unique pedagogic approach, for example, providing participatory visual media and encouraging cooperative learning
  • Joanne Paul (Media, Arts and Humanities) for her work on her MA module ‘Women and the Political’ where she encourages students to think critically of the exclusion of women from politics and political thinking

Dr David Walker, Head of Technology Enhanced Learning, presented the Transformative Technology award, which celebrates the use of technology in interesting and innovative ways to enhance student learning and knowledge creation, those shortlisted were:

  • Andres Guadamuz (Law, Politics and Sociology)
  • Eleanor Miles (Psychology)  

And the joint winners were:

  • Andres Guadamuz (Law, Politics and Sociology) for his creative and visual presentations in intellectual property law lectures
  • Eleanor Miles (Psychology) for using online resources in new and creative ways e.g. using QR codes to give students individualised feedback

Jayne Aldridge, Director of Student Experience, and Professor Simon Thompson co-presented the Sussex Spirit award. The Sussex Spirit Award celebrates members of our community who have been nominated for putting into practice at least one of our core values of kindness, integrity, inclusion, collaboration and courage, those shortlisted were:

  • Tosin Adebisi (International Office)
  • Colin Anderson (IDS)
  • Wendy Ashall (Global)
  • Mariam Attia (ESW)
  • Anjuli Daskarolis & Danielle Salvage (Media, Arts and Humanities)
  • Kristy Flowers (Life Sciences)
  • Sean Higgins (Education and Social Work)
  • Jessica Horst (Psychology)
  • Deborah Jackson-Smith (Media, Arts and Humanities)
  • Keiran Mellikof (Sussex Sport)
  • Eleanor Miles (Psychology)
  • Louise Mimnagh (Brighton and Sussex Medical School)
  • Zahid Pranjol (Life Sciences)
  • Jack Roberts (Sussex Sport)

And the winners were:

  • Tosin Adebisi (International Office, Student Recruitment) for his work developing CineSussex, a book to film club to bridge cultures and promote friendships; the Aspire Mentoring Programme and Lego Serious Play, all-inclusive initiatives which demonstrate the Sussex Spirit
  • Colin Anderson (Institute of Development Studies) for making time for his students, and his continual kindness, sensitivity and support
  • Wendy Ashall (Global Studies) for her passion and kindness towards her students and ‘can do’ attitude
  • Anjuli Daskarolis & Danielle Salvage (Media, Arts and Humanities) for their welcoming and supportive role as Reception Coordinators in MFM, where they demonstrate the five core values every day
  • Kristy Flowers (Life Sciences) for embedding the five core values of kindness, integrity, inclusion, collaboration and courage in her role as Teaching Lab Manager
  • Sean Higgins (Education and Social Work) for showing, as one student put it, ‘genuine interest in his students' wellbeing, even when it inconveniences him,’ and for his consistent and kind approach to feedback
  • Deborah Jackson-Smith (Media, Arts and Humanities) for her work as School Administrator, running the School Office Team and fostering an environment of helpfulness, kindness and positivity for all students and staff
  • Louise Mimnagh (Brighton and Sussex Medical School) for looking out for her students ‘both physically and mentally’ and for being a great source of reassurance and comfort for student in ‘challenging and stressful times’
  • Zahid Pranjol (Life Sciences) for his unique lecturing style which makes complicated topics easier for his students to understand and for ‘always being there for us’

Part of our Learn to Transform strategy, these awards celebrate academic staff and those in the Professional Services who embody our core values of kindness, integrity, inclusion, collaboration and courage.

Nominations for the 2021 Education Awards will be open in the first half of next year. For further information on the awards please email

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By: Rose Wilmot
Last updated: Monday, 7 December 2020

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