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 Queen’s University Belfast addresses cultural disparities by beginning Racial Equity Program

National, 11 June 2024: Queen’s University Belfast, one of the UK’s leading research-intensive universities and a member of the prestigious Russell Group has taken a significant step forward in its commitment to fostering inclusivity with its Race Equality Charter. At the forefront of this commitment stands the university’s Racial Equity Program, which has steadily gained momentum across campus. Guided by the passionate leadership of the Racial Equity Champions Network, this program serves as a driving force behind transformative initiatives aimed at fostering ethnic and cultural parity within Queen’s University.

 This initiative was further amplified through a recent conference on Race Equality in Higher Education. Distinguished panel sessions featured Queen’s students alongside academics, researchers, and practitioners from various institutions. The sessions focused on solutions-based approaches to advancing race equality across education, research, and societal engagement.

 Recent research findings by Ethnic representation index 2023 underscore the pressing need for action within UK universities to address racial disparities in both student populations and academic staff representation. With roughly a quarter of universities reporting a B.A.M.E (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) student population of 50% or more and a third exceeding 40%, it’s evident that diversity among students is substantial.

 Notably, 78 universities, including Queens University, have committed to Advance HE’s Race Equality Charter (REC), designed to recognize and address barriers faced by BAME staff and students through awards based on proactive initiatives. In alignment with these findings, Queens University continues to champion race equality, striving to bridge these gaps and foster an inclusive academic environment.

 Professor Karen McCloskey, academic lead Race Equality Charter, Queens University Belfast, said: “The University is a melting point for students from various ethnic groups living and studying together in perfect harmony and by addressing racial needs we are taking a significant step towards enhancing their comfort and sense of belonging at the campus. At Queen’s, our dedication to promoting race equality is unwavering, as evidenced by our alignment with the Advance HE Race Equality Charter, Queen’s Strategy 2030, and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. This conference marks a significant milestone in our journey toward race equality at Queens. Through collaborative endeavors and unwavering commitment, we are determined to create a more equitable future for all”.

 The initiative marks a pivotal moment in Queen’s University’s journey toward fostering a more inclusive and equitable environment, not only within its campus but also within the broader community and society.


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