Golden Apple Awards

Awards for outstanding members of staff

2020-21 Golden Apple Awards winners were announced on Fri 25th June.

View all Nominations for 2020-21

Total nominations 907

Most dedicated to supporting students, 376 nominations
Winner - Shauna McCuster - Director of Criminology, Sociology and Forensic Investigation in the School of Law, Policing and Social Sciences

Most dedicated to students’ learning, 328 nominations
Winner - Ash Hanson - Lecturer in Paramedic Science in the School of Allied and Public Health Professions

Most engaging online teaching, 203 nominations
Winner - Richard McManus - Director of Research Development in Christ Church Business School

view the 12th Golden Apple awards from 25th June 2021 online here


The 11th Golden Apple Awards took place on Wednesday 27th May 2020 and it was slightly different due to the Covid-19 lockdown, but that didn't stop us celebrating the academic and support staff who go above and beyond to ensure students get the support they deserve.

You can watch the awards on Facebook or on YouTube and it was rather exciting seeing so many people watching.

2020 Golden Apple Awards received a record breaking Total nominations of 1,374 and you can see the complete list of nominees.


Most dedicated to all students’ learning - 335 nominations

Winner - Rebecca Sandys
Runner Up - Peggy Riley

Best online lecture - 136 nominations

Winner - Claire Street
Runner Up - Graham Birrell

Best virtual seminar - 88 nominations

Winner - Gayle Le Moine
Runner Up - Dan Herbert 

Innovative use of video chat - 94 nominations

Winner - Kristine Sommerlade 
Runner Up - Paul Anderson

Most reliable with online availability - 219 nominations

Winner - Kristy Howells
Runner Up - Sarah Spencer

Best emergency alternative assessment planning - 103 nominations

Winner - Graham Jones 
Runner Up - Chris Price

Most calm in a crisis - 211 nominations

Winner - Belinda Siesmaa 
Runner Up - Ivan Khovacs 

Most humour in delivering online content - 143 nominations

Winner - Andrew Palmer
Runner Up - Martin O’Neill

Best home working pet appearance - 28 nominations

Winner - Ash Hanson and Cinnamon
Runners Up - Hellen Frost and Lilly the dog
Runners Up - Kate McLean and Boston the labradoodle

Best home working kid interrupting my lecture/seminar moment - 17 nominations

Winner - Ethan Maltby
Runner Up - Christine Cork

We introduced completely new categories this year focusing on #remotelearning to reward academic and support staff who exhibit exceptional teaching/support standards in these #CCCUVirtualCampus days.

We know it's not been easy adjusting to a new way of working, but the Golden Apples have always been a great way to showcase the good work that many Canterbury Christ Church University staff do for their students.

What are the Golden Apples?

The Golden Apple Awards was a scheme run by the Students’ Union for 10 years, to enable students to reward academic and support staff who exhibit exceptional teaching / support standards or were particularly inspiring within their field. Students from across the University were welcome to nominate any member of staff or support department who/which has had a particularly influential role in the student’s development. These awards were given annually from 2010-19 to outstanding members of academic and support staff, nominated by the students. 

2019 marked the 10th annual awards and the LAST EVER Golden Apple Awards (in their original format)

Stats on all previous awards are available here

The Students’ Union received:

1,374 nomination for 152 members of staff in 2020
875 nominations for 396 members of staff in 2019

1,020 nominations for 441 members of staff in 2018

795 nominations for 312 members of staff in 2017

707 nominations for 
285 members of staff in 2016
387 nominations for 192 members of staff in 2015
425 nominations for 192 members of staff in 2014
420 nominations for 190 members of staff in 2013
411 nominations for 178 members of staff in 2012
304 nominations for 121 members of staff in 2011
113 nominations for 45 members of staff in 2010

To see all previous winners check out the
Golden Apple Awards Honours Board


A full list of all those nominated in 2019 is available here

a video of 2019 awards is available here

photos from 2019 are here

A full list of all those nominated in 2018 is available here

A video of the 2018 event is on Facebook

Photos from 2018 are available on Facebook

A full list of all those nominated in 2017 is available here

A video of the 2017 event is on Facebook

Photos from 2017 are available on Facebook

a video of the 2016 event and photos are online here


(Scroll down for Golden Apple Award Winners from previous years)



“I must say that I feel the students that I work with are a superb group of people and I enjoy working with them very much indeed – I get much back in terms of intellectual stimulation so if were possible, I would award all of them with a golden apple!”

“Recognitions of the contribution of members of staff to the community of learners at the university are very very important to us. Small and big affirmations of each other are a vital part of the building of a resilient and caring community.”

“however much you enjoy teaching, it is first necessary to have interested, dedicated and hard-working students”

Quotes from students’ comments:

“It’s the small things that set her apart from other lecturers at CCCU”

“She takes a great interest in the activities of her students, as well as participating in activities outside her field”

“He pushes his students in a supportive way, and is always approachable for feedback or advice on work matters or other issues”

“She goes beyond what is needed to get the best out of students”

“He goes beyond the call of duty to help any student, even if he is busy”

“I can honestly say that she has made the difference between me fulfilling my dream or giving up. She is honest, consistent, inspirational and an unending supply of positivity”

“She is constantly enthusiastic, no matter how tired she says she is, and she always has the time to speak to anybody about any concerns they have or anything they want to share”

“He is a true gentleman and an inspiration to all”

“He makes us think for ourselves and encourages us to really push ourselves academically”

“His humour combined with his knowledge makes the difficult lectures seem more bearable!”

The Winners for 2019 were:

Student Lecturer  - Carl Gower
Professional Services Department  - Chaplaincy
University Support Staff  - Sophie Moores
Commitment to Sustainability  - Nicola Kemp
Commitment to Expect Respect  - Laura Cashman
Academic Support Staff  - Debbie Booth
Faculty of Health and Wellbeing  - James Elliott
Faculty of Arts and Humanities - Peggy Riley
Faculty of Education  - Claire Harris
Faculty of Social & Applied Sciences  - Pete Lerpiniere
Stand Out Teaching Moment  - Emma Scanlan
Outstanding Contribution - Goran Stefanovski

The Winners for 2018 were:

Student Lecturer - Rachel Taylor
Professional Services Department - Augustine House Housekeeping Team
University Support Staff - Jonathan Hall
Commitment to Sustainability - Zulfi Ali
Commitment to Expect Respect - Richard McManus
Academic Support Staff - Lucy Hoople
Faculty of Health and Wellbeing - Kay Lake
Faculty of Arts and Humanities - Jamie Stephens
Faculty of Education -  Anthony Clarke
Faculty of Social & Applied Sciences  - Amelia Hadfield

The Winners for 2017 were:

Arts & Humanities – Maria Diemling
Education – Zulfi Ali
Health & Wellbeing – Paul Lockwood
Social & Applied Sciences – Martin J Southam
Academic Support Staff – India Raybould
University Support Staff – Jools Pattison
Professional Services Department – Broadstairs Catering Team
Student Lecturer – Deanna Demetriou
Commitment to Expect Respect - Ben Turner
Commitment to Sustainability - Antonia Linehan

The Winners for 2016 were:

Arts & Humanities – Euphemia MacTavish
Education – Aidan Gillespie
Health & Wellbeing – Gayle Le Moine
Social & Applied Sciences – Richard McManus
Academic Support Staff – Jamie Mepham
University Support Staff – Sophie Moores
Professional Services Department – Library Services
Student Lecturer – Danielle McCullough

Special Recognition Award 2016:

The record for the highest number of nominations for an individual had been held since 2012 with a record of 38 nominations for Kristy Howells (Faculty of Education). Kristy has also been nominated in the Golden Apples every year since 2011. In 2016, the Students' Union presented Kristy with a special recognition award for her achievement.

Not only was the record for the total number of nominations overall broken in 2016 with 707, but Kristy's record for the highest number of nominations for an individual was also broken; with Aidan Gillespie receiving 48 and Richard McManus 49 nominations.

The Winners for 2015 were:

Arts & Humanities – Chris Pallant
Education – Claire Harris
Health & Wellbeing – Bev Everest
Social & Applied Sciences – Barry Blackburn
Academic Support Staff – Julia Gavriel
University Support Staff – Ombahadur Rai
Professional Services Department – i-zone

The Winners for 2014 were:

Arts & Humanities - Vanessa Hawes
Education - Anthony Clarke
Health & Social Care - Andrew Southgate
Social & Applied Sciences - Britta Osthaus
Academic Support Staff - Sally-Ann Chambers
University Support Staff - Lynne Bennett
Department with the highest NSS Response Rate - History & American Studies
Department with the highest USS Response Rate - Primary Education

The Winners for 2013 were:

Arts & Humanities - Shane Blackman (Media, Art & Design)
Education - Tracy Parvin (Primary Education)
Health & Social Care - Karen Lumsden (Nursing & Applied Clinical Studies)
Social & Applied Sciences - Miles Thompson (Applied Social Sciences)
Academic Support Staff - Nicky Marshall (History & American Studies)
University Support Staff - Ted Watt-Ruffell (Broadstairs Security Staff)
University Support Department - Employability and Careers
Department with the highest NSS Response Rate - Geographical & Life Sciences
Department with the highest USS Response Rate - Primary Education
Students’ Union Recognition Award - Lee Soden / Phil Poole

Programme Awards 2013
Teaching Quality – Quality teaching on my programme/course overall
Student Engagement – My programme has supported me in engaging my own independent learning
Student Development – My programme has supported my personal development over and above my curriculum

Faculty of Arts & Humanities
Teaching – History, Engagement – Commercial Music, Development – FRTV

Faculty of Education
Teaching – Early Childhood Studies, Engagement – Education Studies, Development – Primary Education

Faculty of Health & Social Care
Teaching – Adult Nursing, Engagement – Health Studies, Development – Social Work

Faculty of Social & Applied Sciences
Teaching – Sports & Exercise Science, Engagement – Geography, Development – Psychology

The Winners for 2012 were:

Arts & Humanities - Ken Fox
Education - Kristy Howells
Health & Social Care - Martin Bailey
Social & Applied Sciences - Britta Osthaus
Support Staff - John Hills (2nd year running)
Department with highest NSS response rate - History & American Studies
Department with highest USS response rate - Applied Psychology

The Winners for 2011 were:

Arts & Humanities - Paul Dennis
Business & Management - Jake Monk
Education - Julie Evans
Health & Social Care - Vanessa Abrahamson
Social & Applied Sciences - Liz Steadman
Support Staff - John Hills
Department with highest NSS response rate - Health, Wellbeing & Family

The Winners for 2010 were:

Arts & Humanities - Andrew King
Business & Management - Nicky Leatherbarrow
Education - Michael Green
Health & Social Care - Debbie King
Social & Applied Sciences - Shauna McCuster

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