Invest in our Teaching
One of the unique strengths of an Oxbridge education is the college-based, small group supervision system, which emphasises individual learning and encourages argument and debate. Providing good undergraduate supervisions in small groups is time-consuming and expensive but hugely worthwhile. Supervisions give our students a flexibility and breadth of outlook that are essential to succeeding in a rapidly changing world. Caius seeks support from those who care about securing the future of the supervision system.
Fellows are central to the life of the College. It is the Fellows who are primarily responsible for fulfilling the College’s mission to promote learning at the highest level, through teaching as well as research. The College’s reputation, within the University as well as outside it, depends on the quality of the teaching and research carried out by its Fellows. The College is now turning to the Caian community to endow College Lectureships, which are vital to maintaining the supervision system.
“The Fellowship are deeply grateful to the Development Office for sustaining the Cambridge supervision system that we’re all engaged in. It wouldn’t have been possible, in fact, for Caius to have continued this, without the work of the Development Office over the last decade.” Professor John Mollon (1996), President
College Lectureship for a University Lecturer or Professor
The majority of Caius Fellows are University Teaching Officers (UTOs), who receive their primary stipend from Cambridge University. The costs of such Fellowships to the College are providing a College room for teaching, dining rights, payments for holding College offices, such as Tutorships, and fees for carrying out supervisions. Typically, UTOs have at least two areas of responsibility, one in the College and one in the University.
College lectureships recently endowed and named are the John Haines, Bailey and Nicholas Sallnow-Smith Lectureships. Dr David Summers (1974) is Head of Cambridge University’s Department of Genetics and Director of Studies (DoS) in Biology at Caius. In the latter capacity, he is the John Haines College Lecturer, a position maintained by a generous donation from John Haines (1949), who read Natural Sciences and Economics, and founded the business communications group, Informa. What David says he treasures, in his role as DoS and supervisor, is the chance to get to know his students as individuals, from their admission interviews to graduation: “The regular weekly supervisions enable me to follow their growing understanding of the subject and to guide their progress in a way that would be impossible in a larger group.”
Professor Kay-Tee Khaw (1991) and Dr K J Patel (1989) are the holders of the Jeffrey Cheah Fellowships at Caius, endowed in 2014 by the founder of Sunway University, Malaysia. Professor Khaw, Professor of Clinical Gerontology, is investigating ways of maintaining health in later life and preventing chronic diseases through nutrition and physical activity. Dr Patel, the College's Director of Studies for Clinical Medicine, is researching how alcohol causes us lasting harm through its ability to damage DNA. Both Fellows recognise Tan Sri Dr Cheah’s generosity by giving annual lectures in Malaysia.
College Lectureship for a College Teaching Officer
College Teaching Officers (CTOs) are entirely funded by the College. As full time College teachers, they are expected to act as Directors of Studies when needed and to supervise a substantial number of Caius students each year, as well as continuing their own research. These Fellows form the mainstay of College teaching; they participate fully in admissions interviews and hold other College offices, often serving for long periods as Tutors.
Dr Melissa Calaresu (1997) is the Neil McKendrick College Lecturer. She is a gifted cultural historian who first studied the Enlightenment in Italy. 95 students of the former Master, Neil McKendrick, gave £1 million to endow in perpetuity a College Lecturership to commemorate his exceptional dedication to Caius. McKendrick was a legendary College supervisor and Director of Studies, whose rigorous intellectual discipline inspired his students over almost 40 years to achieve record numbers of Firsts and starred Firsts in History. He was Master for nine more years, completing almost half a century of loyal service and leadership.
Dr Calaresu, one of the College’s Graduate Tutors, enjoys working with outstanding students and colleagues: “What’s great about History at Caius is the intellectual energy and sense of community among historians at all levels”.
For Caius to continue to attract people of the highest calibre for these positions, which are vital to the teaching and pastoral care provided by the College, the salary and tenure must be comparable with those for University Lecturers. Diminishing government funding places the onus for this on our Endowment.
‘The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.’ Plutarch