Meeting Minds: Alumni Weekend in Oxford

The Meeting Minds: Alumni Weekend in Oxford will take place on Friday 18 - Sunday 20 September and will showcase the best and brightest of the University - past, present and future. A tour of St Catherine's College will be taking place 10:00-11:00 on Saturday 19 September.
You can check the programme, browse the brochure and book your place via these pages.

Date: Friday 18 - Sunday 20 September 2015

Time: 14:30 onwards

Catz Fellow Awarded Palmes Académiques

Catz Fellow Richard Parish, Professor of French and Tutor at St Catherine’s College, has been promoted to the rank of Commandeur dans l'ordre des palmes académiques by the Maison Française d’Oxford (MFO). The MFO aims to promote a better understanding between the British and French people by boosting cooperation between academics and students from the two countries, with a focus on Franco-British scientific and cultural cooperation.

Catz Fellow Wins ZSL Scientific Medal

Catz Fellow Tommaso Pizzari, Professor of Evolutionary Biology at Oxford’s Department of Zoology and Senior Biology Tutor St. Catherine’s College, has been awarded the 2014 Scientific Medal by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL).

ZSL recognises outstanding achievements in conservation and zoological research through its annual presentation of awards and prizes, and the Scientific Medal is awarded to zoologists with no more than 15 years postdoctoral experience in recognition of scientific merit.

Shimon Whiteson

BA Rice, PhD UT-Austin


I teach a range of subjects, but with a particular emphasis on Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning.

About me

I studied English and Computer Science at Rice University before completing my doctorate in Computer Science at the University of Texas at Austin in 2007.  I then spent eight years as an Assistant and then an Associate Professor at the University of Amsterdam before joining Oxford as an Associate Professor and a Fellow in Computer Science at St. Catz in 2015. In 2018, I was awarded the title Professor of Computer Science.


My research focuses on artificial intelligence.  My goal is to design, analyse, and evaluate the algorithms that enable computational systems to acquire and execute intelligent behaviour.  

I’m particularly interested in machine learning, with which computers can learn from experience, and decision-theoretic planning, with which they can reason about their goals and deduce behavioural strategies that maximise their utility.

In addition to theoretical work on these topics, I have in recent years also focused on applying them to practical problems in robotics and search engine optimisation.

Fellow and Tutor in Computer Science
Professor of Computer Science

Catering Supervisor

St Catherine’s College is one of the newest and largest Colleges within the University of Oxford, with over 800 students, and our busy Hall caters for a wide range of dining needs – from ‘canteen-style’ service for students through formal dinners to large banquets for conference delegates.

We are looking for a Hall Supervisor to provide outstanding levels of service to all those who use the Hall, including conference delegates, students, staff and Fellows. Working closely with our existing Hall Supervisor, you will be responsible for the running of the Hall and Servery when required, in the absence of the Hall Manager.

We are looking for someone with a strong customer focus and an eye for detail who can work calmly in a busy environment.

The post is for 35 hours a week on a 5 days out of 7 basis. The rate of pay is £10.20 an hour. We also offer a range of benefits including parking, meals without charge whilst on duty, season ticket loans and free use of the College gym.

More details can be found in the further particulars:
Further Particulars (Word version)
Further Particulars (PDF version)
To apply
To apply please complete an application form and recruitment monitoring form and email them to
Application Form
Recruitment monitoring Form

These documents can also be obtained via email from

The closing date for receipt of applications is is 5pm on Thursday 18 October 2018.



Summer Conference Casual Staff

We have a number of vacancies for Conference Casual Staff this summer vacation over the period Thursday 21 June to Saturday 29 September 2018.

Details of the work available
There are vacancies in a number of departments. You will be assigned to a specific department but you will be expected to work in any of the departments if needed. We ask that you identify in your application which department(s) you would prefer to be appointed to as your main department (you can select more than one).

The departments in which you may be asked to work include:

Bar: Duties include serving and selling alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks to customers in the Bar, ensuring the Bar area is kept clean and tidy, bar service at events outside the Bar.

Hall: Duties include waiting on tables, laying up cutlery, setting up service stations, clearing away after meals.

Housekeeping:  Duties include cleaning rooms, delivering linen, restocking tea and coffee in rooms.

Kitchen: Duties include assisting the Chefs with the preparation of food and helping plate hot and cold meals.

Lodge: Duties include providing a reception service to delegates / visitors to the College, taking delegates’ luggage to their rooms, checking keys in and out, checking room occupancies, acting as a ‘runner’ for conference organisers.

Operations: Duties include cleaning rooms, serving tea and coffee to conference delegates, moving light furniture, setting up and clearing away AV equipment, trouble-shooting basic AV problems that may arise.

All roles will involve a degree of interaction with conference delegates. This will require you to have an enthusiasm about customer service, the ability to put the needs of the customer first, an outward-going attitude and an ability to communicate clearly with guests. Attention to appearance and the dress code for casual staff will also be of the very highest importance.

Pay and hours
The rate of pay for all roles is £7.38 (plus £0.89 holiday pay) per hour or £7.83 (plus £0.95 holiday pay) per hour for those 25 or over. All positions include free accommodation and meals in College (when you are on shift and the Kitchen is open) for the period you are working. You may be asked to move rooms during your stay due to maintenance work and other operational requirements.
Please note: The College will be closed from 11 August to 25 August inclusive, so no work will be available during this period. Accommodation will continue to be provided free of charge during this time for casual staff working all summer, but the Kitchen will be closed, so meals will not be provided.

There are no guaranteed hours of work per day or per week; the availability of work is entirely dependent on the level of conference business at that time. Whilst there are no guaranteed minimum hours per week for any of these vacancies, it is expected that you will work all reasonable hours offered to you. All roles may involve split shifts, and work at evenings and weekends. By applying you are confirming your willingness to work flexibly in accordance with the needs of the College and to undertake any duty which may be requested of you.

How to apply
To apply you need to complete the application form (available below). In completing the form please make sure you identify which department(s) you would like to be considered for and when you are available to work and that you include details of any relevant experience. There are three periods in which jobs are available:

  • All summer: Thursday 21 June to Saturday 29 September
  • Period 1: Thursday 21 June to Tuesday 31 July
  • Period 2: Sunday 26 August to Saturday 29 September

You must be available to work for a whole period.

Completed forms should be sent by email to the Personnel Advisor ( and must be received by 5:00pm on Monday 14 May 2018. Applications received after this date will not normally be accepted.    

Application form

Please note that no offers of employment will be made until after the closing date, when all the applications have been assessed. You should not, therefore, make arrangements (e.g. travel) until it has been confirmed whether or not your application has been successful. Offers of employment may be subject to the successful completion of a brief interview.

Junior Dean

St Catherine’s College is seeking to appoint a Junior Dean for the period 16 September 2018 - 22 June 2019.

In addition to a stipend of £4,977, the Junior Dean will receive accommodation, together with breakfast and dinner in College, without charge, during the period of the contract. The post holder will have full membership of the Middle Common Room. The total value of the stipend plus benefits over the three terms worked is in the order of £12,522.

Junior Deans are expected to assist the Dean in their responsibility for ensuring the well-being of student members, and ensure that student members conduct themselves in accordance with the College’s Statutes, By-Laws and Regulations. At the time of appointment applicants must be graduate members of the University and actively pursuing advanced study or research.

If a successful applicant is at another college, they would be required to migrate to St Catherine's.

Further details can be found in the further particulars:

Further particulars (Word version)
Further particulars (PDF version)

To Apply
Please email a letter of application and curriculum vitae to the Personnel Office,

In addition, all applicants are required to complete an Application Form and a Recruitment Monitoring Form.

Application Form
Recruitment Monitoring Form

The closing date for receipt of applications is midday on Tuesday 3 July 2018. We reserve the right to close the post early if sufficient applications are received.


Casual Waiting Staff

St Catherine’s, one of the newest and largest colleges in the University, is seeking to recruit a number of casual waiting staff to work on an ‘as required’ basis to provide excellent food and beverage service in our Dining Hall.

We are looking for people who will offer a top quality service at all times, are able to communicate clearly and have an immaculate presentation.

There will be shifts available in the evenings and occasional weekends. The exact hours and days of work will vary according to the needs of the College, but are likely to be 6:30pm–8:30pm in the evenings Monday to Friday. The work will be on a casual basis, meaning that if the College would like to use your services we will inform you that we have work available. You do not have any obligation to accept any offer of work and we do not have any obligation to offer you work. 

The rate of pay will be £8.27 (including holiday pay of 89p) per hour, or if you are aged 25 or over, £8.78 (including holiday pay of 95p) per hour. You will also be entitled to a free meal after each shift.

To apply you need to submit a CV or complete an application form (you don’t need to send both). This should be sent by email to

The application form can be downloaded here:

Application Form

The closing date for applications is midday on 3 January 2019.




St Catherine's College is a modern college and most of its buildings are accessible. It is located near to the city centre, the Science Area and most University faculties and libraries (the English, Law and Economics faculties are literally next door) yet is surrounded by meadows and parks. The College has admitted students who were wheelchair users and would gladly consider changes to buildings thought necessary by a disabled applicant.

College Site:

The car park is on the left as you enter the College from Manor Road. The Porters' Lodge in the Arumugam Building, to which there is level access, is next to the car park. Disabled members of the College will be given priority in the allocation of car parking spaces. There is flat access from here to the Main Quad off which most facilities are found. All the staircases are opened with a keypad that is at a suitable height for those in a wheelchair.

The Library has flat access from Main Quad through two heavy wooden doors. Whilst many of the books are stored on the upper level the Librarian is willing to fetch them if necessary. The Bernard Sunley Building is next to the Library and has flat access to the Middle Common Room, a teaching room and to the base of the lecture theatre. There is a wheelchair platform lift  to the teaching rooms and law library on the first floor. The computer rooms adjacent to the Junior Common Room and  in Staircase 18 adjacent to the car park have flat access. All of the administrative offices are adjacent to the Senior Common Room and have flat access from the car park.

The Dining Hall and Junior Common Room (spacious college bar, TV area, email room and music practice room) are located in a separate building that has flat access from the Main Quad and car park. Inside, they all have flat access and moveable chairs or benches. The laundry is in a separate building which also has flat access. The College gym also has ramped access. 

The Bernard Sunley Building, Mary Sunley Building and JCR lecture theatres have induction loops that can be enabled on request.

Automated door access is present in the Lodge, Staircase 20, JCR entrance, Library external entrance and Bernard Sunley Building east entrance.


The vast majority of undergraduates live in college for three years. There are ground floor bedrooms suitable for wheelchair users. All study-bedrooms have internet access and the possibility of a telephone connection.

There are six bedrooms with en-suite facilities and adapted shower rooms which are situated in Staircases 17, 18 19 and 20 adjacent to the car park. The College has a further 40 ground floor bedrooms with en-suite shower rooms for students.


Students eat in Hall on a 'pay as you eat' basis.


Equal Opportunities - Disability


St Catherine's College aims to provide an environment which both values and promotes diversity and equality of opportunity, encouraging all our staff and students to fulfil their potential. This approach includes all policies, procedures, practices and plans.

This section provides information about the specific ways in which we endeavour to make the College even more accessible to individuals with disabilities, and also provides a more general overview of legislation and our response to that legislation.

Legal Context

Discrimination on the grounds of disability is prohibited by the Equality Act 2010, both generally and in the following specific areas:

  • Employment
  • Access to services, premises and private clubs
  • Education

Disability is defined by the Equality Act as "a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-lasting effect on a person's ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities". A "long-lasting effect" is one which is likely to last 12 months or more, or is likely to recur. "Normal day-to-day activities" might include physical activities such as mobility, physical coordination, memory or ability to learn, manual dexterity, or speech, hearing or eyesight.

Discrimination (all types), harassment and victimisation are all prohibited. In addition, it is illegal to discriminate for a disability-related reason.

Discrimination by association is also prohibited, and therefore the legislation extends the protection offered to cover people who are not themselves disabled but are associated with a disabled person. For example, it is illegal to discriminate against someone who is not themselves disabled but who is the carer of a disabled person.

Service providers are required to make "reasonable adjustments" to any aspect of the physical nature of their premises or to any "provision, criterion or practice" which places a disabled person at a substantial disadvantage compared with a non-disabled person. Examples of reasonable adjustments might include installing a wheelchair ramp to enable access to buildings, or providing additional support or equipment to enable a disabled person to undertake their duties (e.g. modified computer equipment). What count as "reasonable adjustments" are a matter of context and will depend on a range of factors.

The duty to make reasonable adjustments only applies to those who disabled; therefore, the College is not required to make adjustments for people who, for example, are carers of those with disabilities but who are not themselves disabled.

In addition to the above, the Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001 prohibits discrimination in relation to school admissions, exclusions, and the education or associated services provided to pupils. Higher education establishments must also provide auxiliary aids or services, and have a duty to make adjustments to physical features.

The College's Position

Under UK legislation, St Catherine’s College has a positive duty to promote equality of opportunity between disabled persons and other people, and to seek to eliminate unlawful disability discrimination and harassment. We are also required to promote positive attitudes towards disabled people, encourage participation by disabled people in public life within the College, and take steps to meet disabled people’s needs (even if this requires more favourable treatment).

The College works continuously to address areas of concern, to ensure that our existing policies, procedures and practices are reviewed, where possible with the involvement of disabled members of the College, and to identify any further areas which can be improved as part of this ongoing process. Through the Equality Committee and other mechanisms we aim to review and report on our progress in ensuring that students and staff experience a consistently inclusive and supportive environment to assist them in reaching their full potential.
We ask that staff, students and potential students tell us if they have a disability or long-term health condition to enable us to:

  • make any ‘reasonable adjustments’ that they may need in your work or study;
  • understand any difficulties they may have, and how we can help;
  • monitor whether processes such as staff recruitment are carried out fairly.

We welcome feedback at any time, as we endeavour to ensure that what we do is meaningful, focussed on the right priorities and will have a real impact on the experience of members of the College, visitors and other interested parties – with or without disabilities. We would therefore be pleased to receive any comments and suggestions, and these may be emailed (with "Equality - Disabilities" in the subject line) to the Home Bursar at

In particular we are always interested to receive answers to the following questions:
1. What do we do well in terms of supporting students/ staff/ visitors with disabilities?
2. What policies, procedures or practices exist within the College that are barriers to disabled people?
3. Can you suggest how we can remove these barriers?

Support and Advice

Guidance on our personnel policy may be sought from the Personnel Advisor. Students may seek advice from the Academic Registrar.
The University DEO Unit provides a network of harassment advisers and is also responsible for updating the Code of Practice on Harassment.
The University offers training in best practice for those involved in the admissions process, recruitment and selection, management and teaching.

Further Information

The University website contains useful links to relevant legislation, as well as providing details of the ways in which the University has sought to fulfil its commitments to promoting disability equality.
The University has its own Disability Office, and University Disability Staff can provide staff and students with information and advice on a range of issues relating to disability. Specialist advice is available to students via the University Counselling Service, and to staff via the University Occupational Health Service.


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