Keele Student Competition

SOLACE (Stories of public health through Local Art-based Community Engagement) is a two-year research project jointly funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Medical Research Council, under the Global Challenges Research Fund.

SOLACE brings together researchers from arts, medicine, social science, and humanities, based at Keele University (UK) and Ateneo de Manila University (the Philippines). One of the aims of the SOLACE partnership is to provide cross-cultural learning experiences for Keele and Ateneo students and to develop a creative, interdisciplinary global health learning toolkit for students in higher education.

How to participate in the Solace competition? 

Year 1 and Year 2 students from Keele’s School of Medicine and Year 1 and Year 2 students from Keele’s School of Humanities are invited to submit a piece of creative work on global health to our SOLACE student competition.  The submitted work can be in the format of choice. This could be an essay, a poem, a music documentary, an audio-visual installation, a painting or a combination of the above. The submission must convey in a powerful fashion the student’s interest in global health.  You must submit a ‘hard’ copy of your work and a ‘soft’ copy an electronic version (if an installation, please provide detailed pictures), large files should be sent as a Google Drive link. You should email your submission to CASIC Administrator Ms. Liz Riley ( and arrange a drop off of your hard submission. Absolute deadline is Wednesday 28 March 2018 12 noon. No late submissions will be accepted. Please indicate if you are happy for your creative piece to be part of the SOLACE exhibition (launch: 1 May 2019).

Eligibility Criteria 
  • Students need to be registered in 2017-18 as a Year 1 or Year 2 student at the School of Medicine or the School of Humanities
  • Students need to be medically fit to travel to the Philippines
  • Students need to be able and agreeable to receive the necessary vaccinations
  • Students should not have any exams (resits or first attempts) or coursework to do during the summer (in case the winner has resits/exams/coursework, s/he will be replaced by the runner-up)
  • Students should be available to travel to the Philippines at the end of July 2018
  • Students should be able to combine successfully academic studies with the SOLACE activities
The winners will become solace ambassadors and…

The winning medical student and winning humanities student will travel to Northern Samar, Philippines, for a week of fieldwork in July 2018.  Our partner institution in the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University, will also hold a student SOLACE competition. The Keele medical student will be paired up with the art student from Ateneo and the Keele humanities student will be paired up with the medical student from Ateneo.  The 4 SOLACE ambassadors will be expected to immerse themselves in the field in July 2018. They will collect stories, pictures, create audio-visual stories, keep a field diary and write up field notes.

This material will serve as (1) input to the SOLACE social media campaign (via Tweets and blog entries) and (2) to produce a creative global health learning toolkit and an installation to be displayed at the SOLACE exhibition held in May 2019. This can be produced in 2018-19 when the two Ateneo students will travel to Keele for an immersion week in the UK. The date of that visit will be at a time mutually convenient for the 4 SOLACE ambassadors.

The 2 winners and 4 runners-up (i.e. first 3 medical students and first 3 humanities students) will have their pieces published as CASIC working papers (see

Costs and practical arrangements

All costs (flights, local transport, accommodation, subsistence, and vaccinations) will be covered by the SOLACE grant.  The flights and accommodation will be booked by the SOLACE team and the 4 SOLACE ambassadors students will be accompanied by a local SOLACE team member.

The eight Solace judges are

Dr Peter Coventry, Director of Undergraduate Programmes School of Medicine Keele // Dr Lisa Dikomitis, Principal Investigator SOLACE // Dr Lindsay Hamilton, CASIC Working Papers Series chief editor // Professor Andy Hassell, Head School of Medicine // Professor Mihaela Kelemen, Director CASIC // Dr Timothy Lustig, Head School of Humanities // Professor Christian Mallen, Lead Global Health Research at Keele University // Ms Sue Moffat, Director New Vic Borderlines // Professor Alannah Tomkins, School of Humanities

  • Deadline submissions: Wednesday 28th March 2018 at 12noon
  • Announcement winners: Friday 20 April 2018
  • Confirmation travel (after the exam results are released): Thursday 5 July 2018
  • SOLACE field trip (Keele students travel to the Philippines): end of July 2018
  • Producing a creative, global learning toolkit, a piece for the SOLACE exhibition and a paper: 2018-19
  • SOLACE research week (Ateneo students travel to the UK): a week in 2019, date to be confirmed
  • Launch SOLACE exhibition Keele: Wednesday 1 May 2019

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @Solace_Research