Students Staff

01 March 2016

Celebrating diversity and inspirational women

Essex student helps promote our Women of the Future Appeal

Essex is celebrating inspirational women

The University will be celebrating inspirational women as part of a ten-day programme of activities highlighting equality and diversity.

Diversity Week, a collaboration between Equality and Diversity, the Students' Union and the Essex Women's Network,  will be launched on International Women’ Day, Tuesday 8 March. It will include talks, workshops, panel discussions, exhibitions, films and awards for motivational, empowering or inspirational female students and staff.

An exhibition in the foyer of the Silberrad Student Centre on 8 March will highlight some of our inspirational Essex women alumnae and members of staff. There will be opportunities for staff, students and visitors to post details of women who have inspired them, and find out about the progress of the University’s Women of the Future Appeal which will support the next generation of talented and inspirational women.

The Appeal, launched in June to provide 25 Masters scholarships at Essex for women with the potential to effect positive change in their communities, has already raised over £400,000 towards its £500,000 target.

The Diversity Week programme, which runs from 7-18 March, features events related to all nine protected characteristics covered in the Equality Act 2010. After International Women’s Day, subsequent days focus on Age, LGBT, Worldview, Race and Racism, Women in STEM, Disability, Parents, and Marriage and Civil Partnership.

Events will feature members of senior management designated as Diversity Champions for the different characteristics, external speakers, and representatives from the Students’ Union and student societies. A Students' Union women's employability networking event will take place in The Hexagon, alongside an art exhibition and Essex Women's Network event. The SU Feminist Society also has a week-long programme of events, and Essex Business School has a postgraduate talk on tackling the gender pay gap.

Executive Dean for the Faculty of Humanities and Diversity Champion on sexual orientation, Professor Lorna Fox O’Mahony, said: “As well as highlighting our University’s commitment to diversity, our Diversity Week programme is an opportunity for staff and students to get involved, participating in initiatives that support inclusion for all members of our community, and helping to shape the agenda as the University continues to look for ways to enhance equality and diversity across our community.”

Students' Union Women's Officer Anne-Marie Howe said: "I think it's important to celebrate this generation of women, and to inspire and empower one another. Women still don't have equal opportunity in the workplace, our networking event ains to help to develop women to take a strong and confident stance on employability and to celebrate their talent."


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