Please read our student and staff community guidance on COVID-19
Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Diane Sargeant

Tell us a bit about your role…

I work in Estates, specifically Campus Cleaning Services for Campus Accommodation. There are far too many things to mention, so I’ve just picked a few that keep me busy!

  • I spend time liaising with various trades to carry out maintenance works in the residences, making sure that we pick the best possible time to carry it out, that there are no clashes and - most importantly - that everyone knows what is happening.
  • I help with planning by keeping spreadsheets up to date so we can see for the next six summers where were are carrying out refurbishments, which blocks are being used for vacation accommodation and conferences etc.
  • I liaise with the hall managers and the Conference Park and Events team regarding specific bookings, whether we can comply with extra requests, costings and things like that in order to improve the revenue generated. My personal motto is ‘whatever has been organised can be changed’.

Tell us about your award-winning project/work…

On campus we have 15 permanent British Heart Foundation (BHF) banks and during the summer we take delivery of an additional 22 banks. The BHF are giving us figures per city now, so we've been able to find out that in 2017, the University of Warwick and Coventry University raised a combined total of £135,000 and diverted 72.7 tonnes of items from the waste stream – that’s the weight of 12 elephants!

We’re also glad to support the work of a student organisation called RAWKUS, which collects up a good deal of the non-perishable food left at the end of the student contracts and donates it to local charities. Finally, the duvets from each campus bedroom are collected up, bundled, stored and then loaded onto lorries for a charity to take to those less fortunate than ourselves. Last year we sent 6,400 duvets and over the last few years they’ve gone to places such Syria, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan and some homeless charities here in the Midlands.

How does it feel to have won the Community Contribution award?

It felt great even to be nominated as there are many worthwhile projects going on around the University. Of course, it’s especially nice to win but I must thank all of the staff in Accommodation Services who helped with the bundling, counting, loading and general co-operation and help. Our porters worked in baking heat one day and drizzly rain the next to get four containers lorries loaded with duvets (which are surprisingly heavy en masse). I must especially thank Jonathan Holder, who was of invaluable assistance.

Why do you think people should get involved with nominating for the University Awards?

It’s a great way to showcase all of the fantastic things that are going on at the University. We have so many tremendous schemes, ideas and innovations going on that might inspire others.

The University Awards are a great way for the University to improve and learn from staff initiatives over the year. If you could change one thing at the University, what would it be?

I’ve worked at the University for a number of years and it’s been expanding the whole time. A growing estate needs adequate infrastructure to keep it running efficiently. It’s lovely to have shiny new buildings but I think that the mundane aspects of managing a campus are passed over as being too expensive as they are deemed not to add any value or generate income. I feel that more facilities such as a proper refuse compound, laundry and stores, would help with efficiency and - ultimately - customer satisfaction.

What would you like to say to the person – or people – who nominated you?

I’d like to say thank you very much to our General Commercial Manager, Wendy Roberts, for her unfailing support and good humour.