On Monday 5 December, AccessHE brought together 75 practitioners from schools, colleges, HEIs and other educational organisations from across the country to discuss student success for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) learners.
In the morning, delegates had the opportunity to hear from Richard Smith (HEFCE), Nona McDuff (Kingston University London), Professor Kalwant Bhopal (University of Southampton) and Paul Sesay (National Diversity Awards). These speakers were able to describe the current HE landscape focusing on the work being undertaken to support better outcomes for BAME learners. While the statistics on BAME student success can appear bleak, Hearing about the outstanding and innovative work being done to address the attainment gap between white and BAME students was inspiring and encouraging.
In the afternoon, Alex Hall (AccessHE) presented the findings of Prepare to Succeed. This project has engaged learners from across eight London higher education providers in order to better understand the student experience of BAME learners from pre-entry to on-course. Alex focused on the issues identified around parents, course, institution choice and belonging.
After lunch, six AccessHE member HEIs delivered workshops on the interventions they had developed through their participation in Prepare to Succeed. These interventions varied from improved IAG for parent/carers to the creation of a student-led community research project.
At the very end of the day, four students, Maymana (UCL), Coşkun (UCL), Mohamed (Brunel University London) and Stephanie (RVC) spoke about their own experiences of education and higher education. Their diverse experiences helped capture the extensive ways in which students require support and guidance throughout their journey to help foster educational success. Their inspiring speeches also made clear how important future work in this area really is.
For more information about this event, please get in touch with Alex Hall, Project Coordinator.