YCEDE Workshop 2024: Celebrations and reflections on the mid-point of our project

On Friday 14th June YCEDE colleagues, scholarship holders, external partners, and senior management from our partner institutions came together in York for a collaborative workshop titled The Journey to Sustainable Organisational Change for Equity in Postgraduate Research. 

The workshop featured meaningful contributions from key YCEDE stakeholders, including a keynote speech from Professor Udy Archibong MBE (University of Bradford), a discussion from a panel PGRs from across YCEDE institutions, an interactive session led by Professor Paul Wakeling and Dr Bukola Oyinyole (University of York), and a panel discussion co-chaired by Ayo Barley (Managing Director of Bakare Barley and chair of YCEDE External Advisory Board) and Paulette Willliams (Founder of Leading Routes and co-author of the Broken Pipeline Report). The collaborative style of the workshop was successful in facilitating rich discussions amongst participants from across the YCEDE consortium, allowing everyone to benefit from the breadth of knowledge and expertise present.

Engaging with a diverse range of themes, the workshop focused on highlighting the lived experiences of ethnically-minoritised PGRs, transforming the culture of access and equity in postgraduate research within and beyond YCEDE’s institutions and embedding institutional change. 

The panel discussions with current and future scholarship holders were a highlight. Sophia, Zenab, Amirah, and Uzunma shared their experiences of navigating their identities as ethnically-minoritised PGRs. Their honest and insightful accounts sparked important discussions around student experience of doctoral study and YCEDE and provided valuable recommendations around achieving lasting and positive change in PGR experience.

A key theme throughout the workshop centred on how to ensure YCEDE’s efforts towards equity in postgraduate research are sustainable and long-lasting. Issues of institutional fatigue, visibility and the need for forward thinking were highlighted. Paul and Bukola’s session challenged guests to consider their own views on effective strategies and potential pitfalls for PGR recruitment and admissions, which revealed the multifaceted nature of tackling these issues.

The workshop was a wonderful opportunity for members of the consortium to connect and network. We would like to thank all of our guests for their participation in the workshop and for taking the time to engage in such valuable discussions and for everyone involved in organising such an amazing event. 

View all photos from this fantastic workshop here!