University of Portsmouth: Helping the community through the COVID-19 pandemic

As we continue face the unprecedented consequences of another national lockdown and the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, staff and students at the University of Portsmouth have been helping those affected by the pandemic in our community.

From supporting local schools and colleges to helping with vaccination programmes, here are some of the ways the University is continuing to help the local community to stay safe and well.

Supporting schools and colleges

To ensure that young people are supported in their transition to university, the University provides a wide range of online resources, virtual events and webinars on how to apply to university and extra support for students’ studies.

Easily accessible, interactive workshops are taking place now until 12th February.

The extra support reaches beyond students to teachers and advisors who are being provided with CPD support.

Teachers will be able to download the workshops so they can include them in their lesson plans for the children of key workers and vulnerable children who are still attending school.

All resources provided by the University since March can be accessed here.

Students helping the NHS

Approximately 350 students are currently on placement at NHS trusts and private healthcare providers, with a further 250 students expected to go on placement from February.

These include student nurses, paramedics, radiographers, social workers, physician associates and operating department practitioners.

While the University understands the importance of supporting the NHS through this challenging time, they also acknowledge the need to guide students through their education right up until graduation.

Dr Jason Oakley, Head of the School of Health and Care Professions, said: “Our students have risen to every challenge that the pandemic has thrown at them and they are a credit to the University and themselves.”

Support for local businesses

The University has helped around 200 small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) throughout the pandemic.

Pat Smith, Small Business Manager said: “Our philosophy is to be accessible, relevant and supportive to our SMEs in the region in good and bad times.”

The University’s Faculty of Business and Law is providing weekly webinars for local enterprises and business partners, to provide expert advice on managing teams remotely and retaining customer confidence.

Santander Universities Employability Scheme

As a partner of Santander Universities, the University is participating in the company’s Employability Scheme to the benefit of local businesses and students.

The scheme allows local business to team up with a graduate or student to complete a work project within the business, either virtually or in-person, in line with the Government’s Covid-19 guidelines.

Participants can recruit up to three students or graduates to complete one or more projects on each cycle of the scheme, and Santander will pay up to £1,000 for the student (minimum and maximum hours explained in the terms and conditions).

In addition, Santander is providing the University with a donation of £10,000 to protect employability prospects for students, which will directly benefit 10 individuals.

The Small Business Leadership Programme

The University is running an online eight-week Small Business Leadership Programme, which is open for SMEs that have been established for over a year, are based in England and have five-249 staff.

The course will improve the participants’ strategic leadership skills, ability to make informed decisions while boosting efficiency, marketing and finance skills.

The start dates for this free course are: 26th January, 28th January and 2nd February.

Request a call back via this form.

The Santander Covid-19 Small Business Grant

In order to assist with the challenges SMEs have faced due to the Covid-19 pandemic, ten SMEs in the Solent region have been awarded a £1,600 grant by Santander Universities and managed by the University of Portsmouth’s Business School.

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