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Profile: Tess Raven

Blonde white woman smiling

Tess Raven, Events Officer

Tess has been working at Univ since July 2020. In this profile, she discusses open water swimming, Buttery lunches and working in beautiful locations.

What did you do before you started working at Univ? How did you come to Univ?
I was working at the National Gallery in London in the Research Centre looking after events for the Curatorial and Research departments. I relocated to Oxford in July 2020 with my family and was excited to see the events role at Univ advertised last year.

Having worked primarily in the arts and heritage sector, it has been very interesting to work for a University and in particular an Oxford college. I am no stranger to working in stunning locations having worked at St James’s Palace for The Royal Collection, The National Gallery and The Museum of the Home but Univ is a very special place to work. I love the sense of history and walking through the Quads and gardens, which are beautifully maintained by the Grounds and Garden department.

What does being Events Officer involve?
Along with my fellow Events Officer Julie Boyle, I look after alumni, stewardship and fundraising events for the Development Office. These events can range from the multi-generational annual Football Day to the popular alumni London Dinner and College based events such as the William of Durham Day, Gaudys and other milestone anniversary events.

Tess with Julie Boyle at Summer Eights

Tess with Julie Boyle, Internal Events Officer, at Summer Eights

How has the pandemic changed your work/life?
I appreciate the opportunity to occasionally work from home but I really enjoy coming into College to work and seeing my lovely colleagues and staff from other departments. The delicious lunches from the Buttery are always a treat and I love sitting in Hall to eat them. Who wouldn’t? I am very lucky.

I discovered open water swimming, during the pandemic, and it has become an essential part of my life throughout the year, come rain, shine or even snow! My swim friends and I swam in the river at Port Meadow when the water temperature was 3°C. It was a fairly quick dip that day!

What is your proudest achievement (personal or professional)?
Being a Mum of three children. Currently ranging from ages 4-11, they keep my husband and I busy.

Do you have any funny/favourite moments from your time at Univ that you’re happy to share?
I have loved meeting and exchanging emails with OMs who remember my grandfather Peter Bayley. Some of their stories are very funny! Peter matriculated in English in 1940 and was subsequently an English Fellow at Univ. My grandfather was incredibly fond of Univ and I often think of him when I am wandering through the College grounds.

Describe Univ in three words
Inclusive, friendly and beautiful

Published: 17 July 2022

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