Falmouth University’s newest arrival….

… so I’ve actually done it. I packed my bags. Closed up shop and I’ve moved out of the big city down to the South West coast.

I guess I’ve experienced what many Londoners must experience when deciding to relocate… wrestling with the likes of Samuel Johnson – “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford” but like many I don’t wholly agree with Sammy on that.

Don’t get me wrong. I could do another 37 years in London… but I might not get another 37 after that. And London does have a lot going on but that can be stifling as well as energising… any road, we’ll see how I get on. It all feels quite like an adventure at the moment.

So enough reflection.

What’s Falmouth Uni like….?

Well as Dorothy pointed out to Toto – ‘We’re not in Cansas anymore’ and this is certainly no metropolis University. The campus has so much space… At UAL we were hemmed in on all sides, LCC just goes up and up forever and as mentioned in prior posts LCF is following (or climbing) in that direction too. CSM have done pretty well in securing a large foot print with quite extensive exterior spaces and Chelsea has here grand square, Camberwell and Wimbledon benefit from a bit more horizontal room but compared to Tremough they all resemble fishing boats when pictured next to an ocean liner! And that doesn’t take into account the smaller but never the less significant Wood Lane campus. These are large centres of eduction with room to house all the equipment, facilities and the academic communities that use them with room to spare for amenities, parks and open spaces with wide ranging views of the surrounds (the benefit of being atop a hill). Hopefully I won’t become agoraphobic!

Another thing that is striking here to me is the student population. Because thats what it is. In London the students walk out of the front doors of their site and blend back into the city within a few steps. Here many of the students live on and around the campus and their lives revolve very obviously around its environs. On the evenings and weekends during term time they spill out into the towns of Penryn and Falmouth. I’ve long become used to London’s over riding gigantism, rarely do events or communities overspill in that city to the point where they register on any scale of significance. The Olympics was one such event, but in terms of cultures or events, a thousand happenings can all be simultaneously happening across the city and yet you still might not be aware there are arts and culture and life all around you as you sit in your living room on a Saturday night. Point in case, I was living one street over from Kingsland road in Dalston, one of the busiest night life hubs in the Near North East and yet unless I was out or returning home in the evening all the chaos and crowds might as well have been a hundred miles away.

But I guess this is what these ‘University’ towns have going for them. Actually I thing Falmouth is a city (one of the smallest on the list – circa 19k population) of which during term time about 6k is students… there were more people in my half a mile postcode in Dalston.

Enough comparisons (for the moment).

The welcome here has been very nice. I met the ET team (You can see the ET blog here : http://et.falmouth.ac.uk/) I’ll be working for on my first morning and began the process of being oriented. Just the campus tours took about a day and a half along with setting up of all the necessary admin and accounts for the new post… (I think I’m going to write a separate post covering that because it’s quite an interesting technology topic…)

Geographical acclimatisation aside the real work begins with the online landscape.

There’s the new VLE, new web portals, new tools and new protocols… all of which I’ll be covering in my next post.

But I think that’ll do for for the minute.

See you next time… and keep it Ed Tech!

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