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The Equality & Diversity Section is delighted to announce that we received 49 applications to the first round of the annual University Diversity Fund (UDF). The UDF aims to support initiatives across the University that contribute to raising awareness of issues related to equality and diversity, challenge discrimination and inequalities, increase the representation of under-represented groups, and facilitate implementation of good practice.

Applications were received from a wide range of applicants including students, academics and professional staff, based in a wide variety of Departments and Non-School Institutions. The nature of submissions ranged from workshops designed to decolonise the curriculum, to poster campaigns, podcasts and websites celebrating the achievement of staff and students from under-represented backgrounds at Cambridge.

The applications were evaluated by an expert panel comprised of University staff and students. The following 13 applications were successful:

Department of Psychology - Conducting interviews with academic and research staff who have taken parental leave in the past five years, in order to identify barriers to implementing the university’s family friendly policies, highlight good practice and consider possible future initiatives.

Faculty of Education - A one-day conference that will create a supportive space for Muslim scholars at the University of Cambridge, where they can collectively address the intersectional entanglement of issues of race, gender, class and religion distinctive to being a Muslim at the University.

Faculty of English - An audio-led walking tour of Cambridge that gives an insight into the city’s LGBT+ history. The downloadable audio trail creates a portrait of Cambridge’s queer and Trans past, drawing on the oral histories of older members of Cambridge’s LGBT+ community, interspersed with snippets from the writings of famous Cambridge residents and students.

Faculty of History- A workshop to inform and raise awareness of the history, theory, and practice of anti-racist education in Britain. The goal is to provide participants with insights and tools to develop teaching, learning and research environments which support all students to succeed in their studies. 

Faculty of History - This project aims to open up the conversation on the role of race in the lives of young second and third generation immigrants. It will attempt to explore what it feels like to occupy a liminal space between the culture of your parents and that of your friends – and what it means to feel British, but not look it.

Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages - Providing training in film-making for 12 members of the University drawn from protected categories. Connecting staff and students from protected categories with the opportunities for further support and mentoring in developing their film-making and creative media skills.

Fitzwilliam Museum - Embedding LGBTQ+ history into museum spaces, and raising awareness of a historic lack of representation within the University’s collections.

MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit - The goal of this project is to provide an outreach experience to underprivileged children, exposing them to subjects, careers and role models which they would not otherwise access. The “BrainBus” will bring diverse neuroscientists and purpose-designed interactive neuroscience activities into the primary classroom, at no charge to the schools.

OEAC- Creating a dedicated communications work stream aimed at increasing the number of students from underrepresented backgrounds, and raising awareness of Cambridge as a tolerant and welcoming environment.

Research Operations Office - Training to ‘break the silence’ and raise awareness of menopause in the work place and how this relates to polices on sickness, attendance management, reasonable adjustments, occupational health and gender equality. Implementing support structures to provide support for those that are particularly struggling with different aspects of this, such as mental health issues due to changing hormones.

Sedgwick Museum - Making the Sedgwick Museum a more welcoming and accessible space for BAME people by delivering familiarisation events, shaped in consultation with BAME staff and student networks.

UCCRI - A careers conference aimed at increasing the participation of BAME students in conservation research, and improving the pipeline of the next generation of conservationists from diverse backgrounds.

UIS - This project seeks to understand UIS' current levels of awareness and understanding of unconscious bias, accessibility and barriers faced by minority groups in the IT Sector.

 

We look forward to sharing more details about the progress and impact of the successful projects.

The next round of the UDF will be launched in Lent 2020.

We would like to take this opportunity to warmly thank all applicants for taking the time to apply, and the UDF Panel for their detailed evaluation of all submissions.