UCL School of Pharmacy


Making intersectionality a workplace reality

22 April 2020

As the UCL School of Pharmacy retains the Athena SWAN Bronze Award until 2022 and works towards achieving the Silver Award, the division’s EDIC reveals its vision to focus on making intersectionality a reality in the workplace.

By sustaining structural and cultural changes that advance gender equality to combat the underrepresentation of women and to advance their pharmacy science research careers, the School of Pharmacy’s EDIC will focus on promoting equality, diversity and inclusivity as an overarching priority.

The Athena SWAN Bronze Award was given in recognition of UCL School of Pharmacy’s commitment to advancing equality, diversity and careers. As part of the School of Pharmacy’s commitment to achieving the Silver Award, the committee has been redeveloped as the UCL School of Pharmacy EDIC, co-chaired by Professor Catherine Tuleu and Dr Mine Orlu to raise awareness and promote the ongoing excellent work.

The School of Pharmacy EDI committee recognises the importance of presenting inspiring role models within pharmacy for all younger and diverse students in the School. This creates a research-inclusive teaching environment and celebrates enabled colleagues. The new EDIC infrastructure is now formed of action groups to focus on six core areas: Wellbeing, Evidence & Data, Mentoring, Community, Parents & Carers, and Public Engagement.

The team incorporates an engaged group which includes the School of Pharmacy Director, the Divisional Manager, the Staffing Office and HR Manager – as well as the Student and Academic Support Office Manager, EDIC Co-Chairs, and EDIC Action Group Leads. To ensure a single-minded approach, EDIC works closely with the School of Pharmacy’s other internal committees, including the Student Experience Group, the Early Researchers Working Group and the Research Degrees Committee.

Professor Catherine Tuleu commented, ‘The purpose of our EDIC is to liaise and engage with strategic national, European and international pharmacy organisations and schools. We believe it is crucial to learn from some of the great work currently happening to promote EDIC principles and share best practices. Great highlights include the International Pharmaceutical Federation programme which supports Women in Science and Education, and the Monash University Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences with their inspirational ‘Her Research Matters’ initiative. These are exciting times for everyone in pharmacy and we strive to ensure that our focus on equality, diversity and inclusivity means there are no barriers to achieving your best work!’

Dr Mine Orlu added, ‘The spirit of our EDIC is to be active and engage with everyone. A series of recent events have included the School of Pharmacy’s Wellbeing Week with a Great SoP Bake-Off Competition, which was a great hit with staff and students across the division! We also hosted a Lunchtime of Laughter cabaret event. And on a more serious note, we launched a Pilot Mentoring Scheme for all staff to run effective mentoring training events sharing best practices - as well as hearing from the inspirational Academic Pharmacist and Principal Teaching Fellow Nadia Bukhari on her work for gender equity in healthcare education in Pakistan.’

Equality Diversity and Inclusion Committee recent events flyer

Other event highlights have included the annual photoshoot ‘Leading by Example’ to mark International Women in Science Day in February 2020. The resulting images were made into a visual showcase of our young female UCL School of Pharmacy students, academics and professional services staff – all of whom form an important part of the talent that makes up the ‘Her Research / Work Matters’ philosophy.

And finally, not deterred by the lockdown, on 22nd April we held our first UCL SoP EDIC ‘virtual’ coffee session entitled ‘Bridging social distances with art’ which saw Dr Janneke van Leeuwen as our speaker. Dr van Leeuwen is a visual artist, neuropsychologist and founder of The Thinking Eye, a social enterprise where visual art and social neuroscience merge with the aim of building inclusive and interconnected worlds that embrace diversity.

Read more here: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/pharmacy/athena-swan