The School of Sport, Rehabilitation and Exercise Sciences (SRES) is the latest department to earn an Athena Swan award, demonstrating the University’s ongoing commitment to gender equality. SRES has been awarded a Bronze Athena Swan award.

Dr Catherine Kerr and Dr Carly Wood, who led this work, showed exceptional dedication to this process during a very challenging time, and the successful Athena Swan Bronze award is a testament to the School’s commitment to inclusion.

Dr Catherine Kerr and Dr Carly Wood said: “As a newly formed School, we are delighted to have been awarded the Athena Swan Bronze Award. Our success in achieving this award has depended on the hard work of staff and students across the School and reflects the School’s commitment to providing an inclusive and supportive environment for all.”

“Following on from this award we have established an Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity Committee, which will provide a more encompassing platform and enable us to broaden our inclusivity work. It will also support our ongoing evaluation to enable us to improve our equality, diversity and inclusivity practices. In the coming years we aim to make improvements to our staff and student recruitment procedures and to further support both staff and students in career progression.”

Athena Swan awards are managed by Advance HE to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing gender equality in higher education for staff and students, and we are aiming for all departments and schools to have a Bronze award.

As part of the Athena Swan submission, departments and schools commit to an ambitious five year action plan, which sets out how their policies, processes, and practices will create an even more inclusive environment.

Those that already have Bronze awards are: Department of Economics, Department of Government, Department of History, School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering, Department of Language and Linguistics, Department of Mathematical Science, Department of Sociology, Essex Business School and Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies. The Department of Psychology, School of Life Sciences, and School of Health and Social Care hold Silver awards.

Athena Swan awards are also given at institutional level. The University currently holds a Bronze award and will be submitting an application for an Institutional Silver award in July 2023.