Orkney Campus staff welcomed the arrival of 27 new masters students, a significant increase from the 12 who studied this year. In addition, eight of the students are from Orkney, the first time such a large number of locally recruited students have taken the course. Completing the Orkney Campus student community are seven PhD students, with more joining imminently and over 100 dedicated distance learning students based in some 15 countries around the globe.
Dr Gareth Davies, Managing Director of the International Centre for Island Technology (ICIT), said, " Given our enhanced marketing efforts this year, we are delighted to have secured 30 students for the 2013/14 MSc intake. Not only it is great for the Orkney Campus and the town of Stromness, it also provides Orkney's thriving renewables industry with opportunities to employ highly skilled graduates in the future. Students can now explore frontiers of research and development, whilst living and working alongside the key people in the renewables industry. Ultimately this gives our students a unique world class experience."
Given the increased student intake, two new lecturers have joined the ICIT:
Dr David Woolf as a lecturer and researcher in Marine Renewable Physics and Dr Kate Johnson as a lecturer in Marine Resource Management.
They will work alongside existing lecturers Prof Jon Side, Dr Mike Bell, Rob Harris, Colin Bullen, and overall teaching programme director Dr Sandy Kerr.
To cope with this expansion of activity, a number of changes are also being made to the facilities used by ICIT. Renovations are currently underway at the Old Academy in Stromness to create a bespoke reception area adjacent to the entrance of the main building.
The staff offices and student study areas are also being increased to cope with the increased numbers. This means that the teaching activity itself will move away from the Old Academy building to use nearby and bigger venues in and around Stromness, while further incorporating the University experience into the local community.
The new MSc students have started an active year with presentations from ICIT staff, have received a campus directory and a tour of Orkney highlighting the natural beauty and resources of the islands.
The induction week culminated in a welcome talk from Professor Dorrik Stow, Head of the Institute of Petroleum Engineering, followed by a public evening lecture entitled Vanished Ocean: How Tethys Re-shaped the World. This is part of the ICIT Guest Lecture series. These quarterly lectures are a big hit with students and the local community alike.