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Van Mildert College

News and Events

New Master of Van Mildert College Announced

(30 June 2011)

Van Mildert College is delighted to announce the appointment of a new Master of the College.

David Harper, Professor of Palaeontology at the University of Copenhagen and Head of Geology at the Natural History Museum of Denmark,  will take up the appointment (subject to contract) from 1st November 2011, following my retirement on 30th September 2011. David will be taking up residence with his wife, Maureen, in the Master's House.

David was born in Edinburgh and graduated from Imperial College, London. He did a Ph.D. at Queen's University, Belfast, and started his academic career in the University of Oslo. He has since held posts in the University of Dundee and at University College, Galway, where he spent 14 years, before moving to Copenhagen in 1998. David has a distinguished research career and he is the Past President of the International Palaeontological Association. He will combine the role of Master with a chair in the Department of Earth Sciences.

David takes over as Master of our thriving community at a very exciting time in the College's development as it looks forward to celebrating its Jubilee in 2015. I am confident that you will give him and Maureen the warmest of welcomes and that you will be as generous in your support of him as you have been to me over the last 7 years.

Patrick O'Meara
Master of Van Mildert College & Professor of Russian
Durham University


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Van Mildert College community outeach and volunteering

Van Mildert College community outeach and volunteering

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Find out about the range of student outreach and volunteering initiatives at Van Mildert College and the contribution they make to the community.

Mildert Outreach Wins International Acclaim at International Green Gown Awards – Marseille, France 2018

The community outreach and volunteering work undertaken by Durham University’s Van Mildert College has been recognised as among the best of any college or university anywhere in the world. The College was among three further or higher education institutions shortlisted for the prestigious International Green Gown Award for Community.

Established in 2004, the Green Gown Awards recognise exceptional sustainability initiatives undertaken by colleges and universities. Van Mildert College won the UK and Ireland honour in November 2017 and went forward to the worldwide award, held in Marseille, France, on Wednesday 16 May.

The award recognises the positive contribution the College makes to local communities through student-led outreach projects. Read more here and take a look at our outreach video also shown on this page.


Big Win for Van Mildert College Outreach at the Green Gown Awards 2017!

Staff and students from Van Mildert attended the UK and Ireland Green Gown Awards on Wednesday 15th November at The Monastery in Manchester. The evening was an opportunity to celebrate the outstanding work of Mildert’s six outreach projects which, under the banner of Van Mildert College Outreach, were shortlisted as Finalists in the Community category of the awards alongside Higher Education Institutions from across the UK and Ireland. Competition would be stiff.

Established in 2004, the Green Gown Awards recognise the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges across the UK and Ireland. With sustainability moving up the agenda, the Awards have become established as the most prestigious recognition of best practice within the Further and Higher Education Sector.

After a super reception in a hue of green lighting and entertainment from Salford University Brass Ensemble, we entered the stunning Monastery itself where we were welcomed by singers from the Royal Northern College of Music. Following an excellent meal, the awards began and the room erupted (well at least a major part of it) as Van Mildert College Outreach was named as the Community category Winner! This prestigious award recognises the hard work of the whole College community but particularly our students who enthusiastically commit their time week on week to our six outreach projects. Mildert’s commitment to outreach and volunteering activities can be traced back over 30 years and is now firmly embedded within the ethos and culture of the College. We feel sure that it will only continue to flourish in the future!

As winners of the Community category, Van Mildert College Outreach will now take part in the International Green Gown Awards competition in Marseille, France in May 2018. Bon chance!

More information about the projects can be found at the JCR Outreach webpage and the entry can be viewed here.


Van Mildert College Outreach Scoops Award at County Durham Environment Awards

It has been quite a week at Van Mildert College with our student-led outreach and volunteering projects being recognised with not one, but two awards! Following recent success at the UK and Ireland Green Gown Awards, staff and students attended the County Durham Environment Awards at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Durham on Thursday 23rd November 2017. Inspiring stories from across the county were showcased highlighting the tremendous commitment of local organisations and individuals to sustainability initiatives.

After an excellent buffet supper and speeches from members of the County Council, the awards began and much to our delight, Van Mildert College Outreach was named Volunteer Group of the Year 2017 in a hotly contested category. The award recognises the outstanding work of Van Mildert College students who make a hugely positive contribution to Durham and the wider North East. However, this success would not have been realised without the support of our many community partners in local schools, through the Police, the Drug and Alcohol Recovery Service, St Oswald’s Church, and a nearby local secure unit.

Thank you Durham County Council for this very special recognition!

If you would like to find out more about the work of Van Mildert College Outreach, please do watch our video below or get in touch with the Deputy Principal, Dr Victoria Brown. More details about the County Durham Environment Award Winners can be found here.