I am extremely fortunate to be able to conduct my research here at Aberystwyth University with the benefit of funding from KESS. I’m not sure whether many of you will have heard of KESS (not to be confused with Kes, the Ken Loach film about the kid with the kestrel, starring Brian Glover) but KESS, or Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships to give its full title, is a major European Convergence programme led by Bangor University on behalf of the HE sector in Wales. Benefitting from European Social Funds (ESF), KESS supports collaborative research projects (Research Masters and PhD) with external partners based in the Convergence area of Wales (being West Wales and the Valleys).
I was applicable for this funding because I was (am!) a very proud resident of Blaenau Gwent, which is part of the convergence area, and as such I am now one of 400+ PhD and Masters students funded by the KESS scheme. Integrated within my PhD is a high-level skills training programme, leading to a Postgraduate Skills Development Award, and also Postgraduate training administered by Aberystwyth University, so ultimately after three years I hope not only to have achieved my doctorate but also to have acquired a range of skills that I can put to use within the convergence area.
For further information, please click on the link here: it will take you to the KESS website.
Thanks for reading.