Take part in Smart Seeds Christchurch 2021

UC, in partnership with GHD, will be hosting the 2021 Smart Seeds Christchurch Showcase in the Haere-Roa building.

The Smart Seeds initiative is a 10-week design-led innovation program, developed by GHD, that focuses on generating fresh ideas to tackle complex challenges, and to create lasting community benefit in today’s rapidly changing world.

The program starts on 27 January when GHD, UC and community partners will gather to determine what this year’s challenges will be. At this hui we will discuss what are the pressing issues that we want participants to engage in. We encourage all UC staff that have a passion for understanding and solving complex issues facing our community to participate and share their input at this hui.

Once challenges are decided teams of emerging leaders from around the region are assigned to tackle the problems and come up with solutions. These teams are supported by mentors with expertise and experience. Again, any UC staff who wish to act as a mentor are encouraged to get in touch with Grahame Burgess (grahame.burgess@canterbury.ac.nz). 

Smart Seeds seeks to empower emerging leaders to co-create integrated solutions to complex challenges. Smart Seeds is held in 12 cities across the globe with more than 1,500 industry leaders inspired to enable change in our communities. To achieve this requires collective insights, diversity, creativity, agility and leadership.

Read more about the Smart Seeds story

The Smart Seeds program is mentored by industry professionals, and provides a collaborative environment to make diverse connections and influence change across organisations and communities.

Find out more about the Smart Seeds program

Transforming our Student Administration and making your life easier

In 2020 Student First transitioned from a Programme of multiple projects to a singular Project – the Student First Project.

The Project’s primary objective is the decommissioning and replacement of Jade (JSMS) with a new Student Management System, ourUC, a web based tool with a modern and simple user interface.

The key focus for 2020 has been the migration of the Admission and Enrolment process from Jade to ourUC, and we have made great progress!  Working closely with our Super SMEs and Student First Working Group, three of the four key stages of the Admission and Enrolment process are now in ourUC:

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Functionality has been progressively released, and initially trialled by key staff (through pilot groups), followed by a larger scale rollout through targeted training.  We are currently in the process of rolling out Qualification Assessment across all colleges.

For more detail on all the other stuff completed over our 10 releases in 2020, please visit the Student First Intranet site.

What lies ahead for 2021?

The Student First Project momentum continues into 2021 – with key areas of focus including, but not limited to:

  • Completion of Course Approvals and Waivers – this moves the assessment of Applications to Enrol into ourUC.
  • Staff processing Change of Enrolment requests in ourUC.
  • Deployment of Managed Programme Entry for Teaching.
  • Fees and EFTs calculations and Enrolment Agreement creation in ourUC.
  • Academic Model work relating to the standardisation of course pre-requisites – this will improve future study planning, progress tracking and graduation calculation.
  • Identity verification, management of student records and international study requirements.

To find out more about the Student First Project, milestones achieved in 2020 (inclusive of a Demo Assessing an Application to Enrol in ourUC) and our focus for 2021, the Student First Team would like to invite you to our Student First End of Year Update – details as follows:

Date: Tuesday 8 December
Time: 11.00 – 12.00 pm
Venue: Undercroft 101

Watch out for more news about our upcoming releases and new features. If you have questions about the Student First Project you can contact us via studentfirstprogramme@canterbury.ac.nz

UPDATES ON YOUR LEAVE FROM ROSIE – OUR FRIENDLY PEOPLE AND CULTURE ROBOTIC ASSISTANT

Earlier this year, the UC Intelligent Automation team in partnership with People and Culture introduced Rosie – a Robotic Assistant who provides timely automated notifications to staff and managers regarding employment-related events. You may have seen an email come through from Rosie already.

Starting this week, Rosie will begin sending out notifications of excess annual leave to keep you informed and enable you to manage your annual leave balance. As you may recall, staff have been asked to have annual leave plans in place for 2021, which has been extended to 31 January 2022 to allow for the summer break. We have had a significant response from staff in managing their excess leave this year, which has had a very positive impact on the University (for both staff wellbeing and financial implications), and the automated emails are a reminder to enable us to continue to encourage and manage annual leave and leave liability effectively.

With the feedback received to date, we understand that the emails from Rosie may look like spam mail. However, you’ll be able to tell if an email is from Rosie according to the email signature which will be “Rosie – Robotic Assistant on behalf of the People and Culture Team”. The People and Culture team are available to assist with any specific queries you may have regarding Rosie or any communication generated from Rosie.

Seeing the Change for the SDGs in Aotearoa

The first online hui of the Aotearoa/NZ Sustainable Development Goals Summit Series was held last month, attracting virtual participants and a group of inspiring speakers, who sparked conversations and connections across Aotearoa.

Co-hosted by UC and Lincoln University, the 2020-2021 SDG Summit Series focuses on how Aotearoa can implement and take action on the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The series is designed to take people on a journey; from an individual understanding of the Global Goals to how to take collective and urgent action to achieve them. This journey will take place through a series of online events and a final in-person Summit event to be held in September 2021.

Last month’s online hui was themed ‘See the Change’ and was designed to help participants gain a solid foundation and a better understanding of the SDGs. It was also an opportunity to hear from inspiring people in our communities, through lightning talks and a panel Q&A. The event was MC’d by Corban Te Aika, Kaiārahi, and the incredible speakers included;

  • 14-year-old climate activist and singer/songwriter Lucy Gray (coordinator of the Christchurch School Strike for Climate)
  • Ngāi Tahu student Tāmati Cunningham (Cashmere High School student leader and manawhenua representative for Environment Canterbury’s Youth Rōpu)
  • Raewyn Jones (WEL Energy Trust Chief Executive and Waikato Wellbeing Project Co-Chair)
  • Dr Pedram Pirnia (Special Advisor for Sustainable Development Goals, United Nations Association of New Zealand).

See Raewyn Jones speak to the collective impact happening within her community as part of her work as Co-Chair of the Waikato Wellbeing Project, below:

Following a beautiful musical performance by Lucy, the hui finished with participants breaking out into two practical and interactive workshop streams, one aimed at those new to the SDGs and one for those wishing to take them to the next level through creativity and visual story-telling.

See the entire first half of Hui#1: See the Change here:

Interested in being part of the journey with us?

The second online hui, ‘Be the Change’ is scheduled for 25 March 2021, and the third online hui, ‘Working Together for Change’ will be held on 24 June 2021.

The third and final summit will be a face-to-face event on 2-3 September 2021, with day one being held at UC. The theme of the third Summit will be ‘Collaboration for Systemic Change’ with day two featuring field trips to experience SDGs in action in and around Waitaha Canterbury.

More information on these events and how you can participate are coming soon.

What are the UN Sustainable Development Goals?

The 17 SDGs are the world’s best plan for achieving a better future for all. In September 2015, the leaders of all 193 UN member states (including Aotearoa New Zealand) adopted Agenda 2030, a universal agenda that contains the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

Over the next ten years, countries will mobilise efforts to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change, while ensuring no one is left behind.

New Zealand’s eight universities have unanimously resolved to work together and with other sectors – specifically central and local government, civil society, the private sector and youth – to show leadership in the implementation of the SDGs at a national level.

This includes a commitment to hosting a series of national summits that aim to promote, build and accelerate multi-sector action to implement the SDGs in New Zealand.

The 2020-2021 SDG Summit Series is co-hosted by the University of Canterbury and Lincoln University. This event and the ones to follow are organised with Ngāi Tuahuririri and Ngāi Tahu, as well as Pasifika communities, and involved support from the Ara Institute of Technology and the Christchurch City Council. Supporting partners also included ChristchurchNZ, SEEDS Podcast, Tourism NZ and the New Zealand National Commission for the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). Stay connected with the Aotearoa SDG Summit Series via their website, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and by signing up to the mailing list here.

Keeping UC staff informed