Refugee Week: Our home away from home: How N.E.S.T is supporting refugees in the North East with Ross Bennett

The theme for Refugee Week 2024 is ‘Our Home’. From the places we gather to share meals to our collective home, planet earth: everyone is invited to celebrate what ‘Our Home’ means to them.

In this special episode to mark Refugee Week 2024, we talk to Ross Bennett, a Newcastle University student and Community Project Worker at North East Solidarity and Teaching (N.E.S.T).

N.E.S.T is a student-led volunteer project designed to educate, empower and integrate the forced migration community in the North East of England. Discover how Ross and the team support roughly 700 service users each year through teaching English, promoting sport, organising trips in the region, and ensuring our local asylum-seeking and refugee community feels at home in Newcastle.

Learn more about how you can support N.E.S.T at

Donate to fund the N.E.S.T summer sailing trip at

Follow N.E.S.T on Instagram @northeastsolidarityandteaching where you can find more information about their work including a link to their student volunteer registration form.

Mental Health Awareness Week: Fit for the future: How are Wellbeing Services empowering students and staff? With Kirsty Hutchinson

In this special episode to mark Mental Health Awareness Week we talk to Kirsty Hutchinson, Head of Welfare and Counselling Services at Newcastle University.

Learn about Kirsty’s role in student welfare, the struggles that students face in higher education and a new innovative Impact measurement Scale, which is changing the way we approach supporting students, not just at Newcastle but throughout the sector.

Find out more about Student Wellbeing at Newcastle University.

If you are a Newcastle University student and are looking for support or advice, you can find it at

Women From Newcastle: Striving for an equal future with Leyla Ferrand and Vladislava Klimyak

In this episode, we focus on the women from Newcastle who will go on to change the future. Leyla Ferrand and Vladislava Klimyak are undergraduate students at Newcastle University. We talk to them about gender equality, women in literature and empowering and supporting each other.

Leyla’s inspirational role model is Elizabeth from the book ‘Lessons in Chemistry’ by Bonnie Garmus. She recommends Mslexia, for women who write: and the Newcastle University Ultimate Frisbee Club:

Vladislava works with the organisation ‘Girl you need to know this’, improving female health literacy at home and the workplace. : You can follow her Newcastle-based Instagram account Vladislava’s inspirational role model is influencer Valeria Lipovetsky who hosts the podcast ‘Not Alone’:

Women From Newcastle: Empowering women in business with Anna Jones

This episode is part of a special series to celebrate International Women’s Day.

In this episode, we talk to Newcastle University Alumna, Anna Jones. Since graduating with a degree in International Business Management Anna has had a successful career in the media industry, serving as the first female CEO at Hearst UK and most recently being appointed the first female CEO of The Telegraph Media Group.

Anna is a champion of female entrepreneurs and co-founded the women-only networking AllBright.

Women From Newcastle: Challenging gender stereotypes in the workplace with Dr Jenny Olsen

This episode is part of a special series to celebrate International Women’s Day.

In this episode, we talk to Dr Jenny Olsen, a researcher from the School of Engineering at Newcastle University. Jenny is offering a brighter future for amputees with her design and testing of prosthetic arms.

Jenny was recently recognised by the Women’s Engineering Society as one of the top 50 women in engineering.

Find out more about Jenny’s research.

Useful Links:

Buy the book ‘Engineers Making a Difference’ by Shini Somara and watch the video featuring Jenny’s work.

Find out more about Sarah Day, Senior Teaching Fellow in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Strathclyde.

Find out more about Sara Walker, Professor of Energy at the University of Birmingham.

Women From Newcastle: Celebrating our forgotten female trailblazers with Jill Taylor-Roe

This episode is part of a special series to celebrate International Women’s Day.

In this episode, we talk to Jill Taylor Roe, Director of Academic Services and University Librarian at Newcastle University. Jill explores the lives of two incredible women who have shaped Newcastle’s past, Dr Ethel Williams and Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen. Learn about how these women have impacted Newcastle University and the North East.

Discover more about Dr Ethel Williams:

The North’s Forgotten Female Reformers:

Watch this short film of a suffragette demonstration in Newcastle 1909. One of the banners in the film may be the one made by Dr Ethel Williams in about 1905.

View photographs, including Ethel’s motorcar and banner at CollectionsCaptured:

Discover more about Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen:

View Sirkka’s photographs including ‘Girl on a Spacehopper’:

Purchase a copy of Sirkka-Liisa Konttinen’s book ‘Byker’ at:

Beyond the diagnosis: The role of exercise in cancer prevention and recovery with Dr Sam Orange

This episode is part of our mini-series, From Newcastle for Healthcare

In this episode we talk to Dr Sam Orange, Lecturer in Clinical Exercise Physiology at Newcastle University.

Discover how exercise can lower the risk of developing cancer and how Sam is working on the PURE-EX project to help support women after breast cancer.

Find out more about Sam’s research and follow him on twitter @SamOrange01.

Useful links mentioned in this episode:

Breast Cancer Now, PUREX Research project:

Contact Dr Sam Orange:

Smiles on Screen: Improving dental care for people with learning difficulties with Dr Susan Bissett and The Lawnmowers Theatre Company

This episode is part of our mini-series, From Newcastle for Healthcare

In this episode we talk to Dr Susan Bissett, Lecturer of Dentistry at Newcastle University and Claire Hills-Wilson, Artistic Director of The Lawnmowers Independent Theatre Company.

Learn about the collaboration between The Lawnmowers Independant Theatre Company and the Newcastle University School of Dental Sciences in creating a new film to help educate dental students on the process of treating patients with learning difficulties.   

Find out more about Susan’s research and follow her on twitter @SusiBiscuits.

Lawnmowers is a producing theatre-arts organisation, operating in Gateshead and surrounding regions and is run by and for people with learning difficulties.

Find out more about The Lawnmowers Theatre Company and follow them on twitter @LawnmowersITC and Facebook. The Lawnmowers also have a YouTube channel showing examples of their work.

From Campus to Community: Inside Newcastle’s Young@Heart Clinic with Dr Hamde Nazar

This episode is part of our mini-series, From Newcastle for Healthcare

In this episode, we talk to Dr Hamde Nazar, senior lecturer and director of education in the School of Pharmacy at Newcastle University.

Learn about the Young@Heart clinic, a student-run health clinic open to members of the public in Newcastle City Centre.

Find out more about Hamde’s work and follow her on twitter @NazarHamde.

Visit the Young@Heart clinic for your health check:

Grainger Market, Newcastle:

Newcastle GP Services (NGPS) Community Health Bus:

Newcastle University Staff and Students:

You can also find out more about the service in this video: Young@Heart Clinic | Newcastle University School of Pharmacy – YouTube

From fungi to furniture: the future of sustainable design with Dr Jane Scott

In this episode, we talk to Dr Jane Scott, Newcastle University Academic Track Fellow (NUAcT) in the Hub for Biotechnology in the Built Environment (HBBE).

Her current research explores the future of interior design, made with mycelium, a root-like structure of fungus.

Learn about the BioKnit Project, a venture which aims to investigate if fungus-filled textiles could become the new cutting-edge technique for making architectural structures and furniture.

Find out more about Jane’s research and follow her on twitter @responsiveknit. Discover more about the Hub for Biotechnology in the Built Environment and follow them on twitter @Bio_Buildings.

Also mentioned in this episode:


Future Observatory Display, Design Museum London:

Magical Mushroom Company:

Farrell Centre, Newcastle upon Tyne: