I never thought I would live to write the words that will follow, but here goes. I am grateful to Ben Affleck. Not particularly for his outrage or his insights on Bill Maher's show, which, albeit entertaining, were not exactly all that insightful, but more so for bringing a particular brand of Islamophobia to the attention of the world - the kind peddled by we-love-liberalism-ers like Bill Maher and Sam Harris.
Did anyone spot the commitment in both the main parties' conference speeches to create a new workforce of thousands of young people - millions even - paid just £2.73 an hour? Actually the initiative wasn't just spotted but welcomed, alongside promises on zero hours contracts and the National Minimum Wage.
So after three years of university, and now embarking on my fourth and final year, I'd like to think I've learned a few things in my time here. As it's round about the start of the new semester, I thought I'd try to share a bit of advice for new students. Please be aware though, I am by no means an expert and still need to learn to follow some of this advice myself!
I believe that if children are to enjoy their right to an education they must be taught by teachers who are properly trained and supported. There is a pressing need to consider how best to train teachers - both new teachers and up-skilling the large numbers of currently unqualified and under-qualified teachers through in-service training.
Within the consumer world one way marketers encourage more women to purchase their goods is what we refer to as "pink it, shrink it". Make it feel more like a women should use it. But should we be using this method to encourage more girls to code?
It's the beginning of the academic year and looking for a job at the end of your degree is likely to feel a very long way off. There is a whole lot of hoops to jump through, coffee to consume and essays to write before that even gets to the top of your priority list. I totally get it. But there are things you can do now that will make that job hunt process so much easier.
Looks like everyone stands to be a winner - young people from across the UK want international skills, employers want to hire them and a short investment in time overseas can pay back for an entire life-time. But it isn't happening. Why?
"It's now time for there to be an official place to say if you have this problem, you can come here," says Thorpe. "We will be able to challenge the powers that be, no matter who you are, be you a lecturer, be you a president, we'll be able to take you to task. Once we begin to name and shame people, that would be an achievement."
At a time where Oxbridge graduates enjoy the lion's share of the top jobs, political or otherwise, Imperial's achievement poses a challenge to public perception. Evidently, our nation's two ancient institutions aren't invincible.
Our partnership with Nuaké is sustainable, we have a relationship based on trust -few similar projects can claim the same- and I think we both benefited and gained a lot from this experience...
We can hardly deny the omnipresence of English in every continent of our globalized world. Although I would not argue that English is colonizing other languages, I do feel that the diversity, cultural expressivity, and magical power of languages should be celebrated across the world.
In recent years, provision by universities of lifelong learning and professional education has been in sharp decline. Earlier this year, for instance, the Rinnooy Kan Commission in the Netherlands found that part-time higher education is undergoing a dramatic decline.
A boost to employability and job prospects is great news, but the more noble, founding notions that underpin the Erasmus scheme must not be forgotten.
Yes, the conference in Manchester has had a certain air of expectation that Labour will win in 2015. There is not, however, the excitement that one would expect at the Labour conference preceding their entry to government, and Miliband's speech did not inspire in the way a man giving his last speech as Leader of the Opposition should do.
Teachers are the unsung heroes of our society. They are often undervalued and unappreciated. They are the whipping boys, the scapegoats and the fall guys for what isn't working in our education system. Let's face it, teachers get a bad press. Almost without exception there is something negative mentioned about teachers in the media every day.
We need to get beyond party politics and create a firm sustainable foundation for our society. That means taking a balanced and inclusive approach to education; it means taking a structured approach to education; it means taking the long-term view.