Global Academics: How to get and make the most out of a Visiting Professorship
How can you get the make out of a Visiting Professorship? Find out with the interview with Nigel Healey of Nottingham Trent University and Sichuan University.Transcript
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About this video
Nigel Healey is Professor, Pro-Vice Chancellor (International) and Head of the College of Business, Law and Social Sciences at Nottingham Trent University and an adjunct professor at Sichuan University. He has served as pro-vice-chancellor and dean at the College of Business and Economics at the University of Canterbury (2004–11) in New Zealand and dean of Manchester Metropolitan University Business School in the UK (2000–04).
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My name is Nigel Healey. I am a professor and pro-vice chancellor international at Nottingham Trent University. I think we are very privileged as academics to work in a sector which is innately international. Research is a global endeavour, so that our day to day job connects us with academics across the planet. And I think by engaging with the international academic community, by publishing internationally,
by taking part in conferences, you just automatically make global connections. And those are connections you can then use over your career. So most of the people with whom I work are not in the UK. They are in different parts of the world and I am constantly connected to them through social media and through conferences.
I think that getting visiting professorships, sometimes it is purely happenstance, sometimes it comes as a result of universities having structured partnerships from which you can take advantage. So if I’m honest, the early visiting professorships that I was lucky enough to get in the US came about because the university where I worked at the time had structured strategic partnerships that actually funded faculty exchange and made it possible to take on those kind of roles.
But I think but then embracing those opportunities, it means that more doors open so other opportunities then came because I had the early exposure. I think if you are active on the conference circuit, if you have research collaborators internationally, again that is another route into visiting posts. People want you to come if you have got something to say and something to contribute.
I think it is being open to opportunities, taking them when they come, but engaging. Constantly trying to engage with the outside world, and those opportunities will come.
In terms of making the most of visiting posts, just immerse yourself in them. When you have the opportunity to go to teach or to take research at a partner institution, throw yourself into it. Really make the most of every opportunity that comes.
Accept every dinner opportunity, accept every speaking engagement, every opportunity to present at a seminar. Make connections, and you will then get a huge return from the visiting professorship. If you lock yourself in the office and don’t engage, the opportunity will come and go.
I think it is a fabulous job, it connects me with the whole world. I choose the subjects that I research so my research is
curiosity led. That is a fabulous privilege. I get to work with a lot of the smartest people around the world, much smarter than me. That is also a huge privilege. And I get to work with people across the world, and you just can’t put a price on that.
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