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Partnership blazes a trail

When University fire safety officers Larry Fortune from Dundee and Ron Adams from St Andrews “swapped” posts, little did they think they would continue to visit their former workplaces in the line of duty.

But thanks to the warm relationship between the two institutions, Larry and Ron meet regularly to swap fire safety notes – just two of the “specialist” members of staff who are benefiting from each others’ expertise thanks to the Promoting Partnership Initiative (PPI).

Larry took up his post at the University of Dundee in February this year, following on from Ron who had just completed a two and a half year fire safety assessment at the institution. Ron, meanwhile, has taken up Larry’s former job as fire safety adviser at the University of St Andrews.

PPI recently launched a scheme to provide a support network to staff who occupy positions like Larry and Ron, who may have a very specific job remit and often work alone. Such staff now enjoy regular meetings with each other to discuss work-related issues and problems such as, in Larry and Ron’s case, drafting a fire hazard policy or ensuring the listed buildings on each campus are fire- safe. Other staff taking part in the scheme include energy managers, health and safety managers, data protection officers and disability advisers.

Welcoming the initiative, Larry said, “It is proving to be extremely useful to have the opportunity to discuss the issues that arise in the course of our work with another expert, especially since we both have a thorough knowledge of each University campus.”

David Corner, Secretary and Registrar of the University of St Andrews, who co-ordinated the scheme, said, “The initiative is proving very helpful and part of an ongoing search throughout the two institutions to identify how we can best work together to our mutual advantage. Individual officers have welcomed the initiative as a way of using links, which often already existed, to address the specific issues of sharing expertise and fostering enhanced collaboration.”

Ends

NOTE TO EDITORS

“Promoting Partnership: An Evolving Collaboration” is an ambitious venture fostering institutional change within higher education. The initiative aims to draw upon strengths and interests in both the University of Dundee and the University of St Andrews to:

… expand both teaching and research in important emerging areas;
… experiment with innovation;
… build significant relationships with the private sector;
… significantly contribute to the social and economic well-being of Scotland.

For further information, please contact Carol Pope, University of Dundee Press Office on telephone (01382) 345108 or Claire Grainger, University of St Andrews Press Office on telephone 01334 462530/07730 415 015.

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