Wednesday 22nd January, 2020
Each year, the University organises an event to celebrate the ongoing development of its people. This year, the event took place on Wednesday 22nd January in The Hex at our Colchester Campus.
The Celebrating Promotions event was organised and run by the Events Office (Communications and External Relations) and Organisational Development (People and Culture). If you have any queries or questions about this content, or the event itself, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A sky full of stars
This years theme was, "A Sky Full of Stars". It was inspired by the Coldplay song of the same name (Ghost Stories, 2014).
You can watch a performance of the song on Later… with Jools Holland, below:
Staff in Organisational Development folded well over 200 origami paper stars. These were then suspended from the ceiling of The Hex (in a similar way to the paper stars seen in the video above). The space was also decorated with lots of star-shaped LED lights. Individual LEDs were also placed inside some of the paper stars to make them glow in the dark.
A total of ??? Essex staff and invited guests attended the Celebrating Promotions event. Attendees were treated with arrival drinks, including wine, Prosecco and Sparkling Elderflower.
"Keep your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground." — Theodore Roosevelt
Staff enjoyed a spot of star gazing as the University's Vice-Chancellor, Anthony Forster, explained the meaning of the stars in his speech.
"A philosopher once asked, 'Are we human because we gaze at the stars, or do we gaze at them because we are human?' Pointless, really…'Do the stars gaze back?' Now, that’s a question." - Neil Gaiman, Writer and Author of "Stardust"
After the VC's speech, everyone enjoyed hot food prepared by the Essex Food catering team. The mini cheese on toast and chips proved especially popular!
"I will love the light for it shows me the way; yet I will love the darkness for it shows me the stars." — Augustine “Og” Mandino
A visualisation containing the names of everyone promoted over the past year was projected onto the walls of The Hex. There were so many names, the video took a full 4 minutes to loop.
Teach me your mood, O patient stars. Who climb each night, the ancient sky. Leaving on space no shade, no scars, no trace of age, no fear to die. — Ralph Waldo Emerson, Writer and Poet
Pink and blue lights were used to illuminate the white paper stars. The video background was carefully designed to blend in with the hanging stars suspended in front of it.
The lighting for the event was inspired by the impressionist artist Vincent van Gogh.
"The night is even more richly coloured than the day… If only one pays attention to it, one sees that certain stars are citron yellow, while others have a pink glow or a green, blue and forget-me-not brilliance. And without my expiating on this theme, it should be clear that putting little white dots on a blue-black surface is not enough." - Vincent van Gogh, Artist
"We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle." — Marilyn Monroe
I love the stars. Because they can’t say anything. I love the stars. Because they do not judge anyone. — Natsuki Takaya, Writer and Manga Artist
Many people also used this as an opportunity to capture a photo of themselves with their colleagues, friends and family.