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Athena SWAN Committee

Gary Bending   


Gary Bending (Chair)

Since taking over as Chair of the Athena SWAN committee in 2015 I’ve become increasingly aware of the strikingly low proportion of female academics in UK Life and Environmental Sciences disciplines, relative to undergraduate, postgraduate and postdoctoral level scientists. Athena SWAN provides an excellent platform to support gender equality, through driving cultural change, support and training for early stage career scientists. My aim is to support inclusivity and equality within the School of Life Science, and support opportunities for career progression irrespective of gender.

Professor Gary Bending, Professor of Environmental Microbiology and Chair of the Athena SWAN committee.

       
 Fabrizio Alberti    

Fabrizio Alberti

I am very pleased to be part of the Athena SWAN committee in Life Sciences, as I strongly believe that all University employees should have the same opportunities to succeed in their academic career regardless of their gender. Being also part of the LGBTUA+ University Staff Network, I am very much aware of the discrimination that transgender staff and students may face because of their gender identity. My aim is to cooperate with colleagues from the Athena SWAN committee to support an environment where everyone feels safe and where there are equal opportunities for all.

Dr Fabrizio Alberti, Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellow

     


Claire Algar    

Claire Algar

In my role as Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator I work very closely with all departments who are progressing towards either a new or renewal Athena SWAN award, as well as sitting on the Athena Institutional Working and Steering Group. The D&I Team hold monthly Athena Network meetings which bring together representatives from all departments to share best practise and update on departmental progress, this meeting has been instrumental in providing support to all involved. I am also a ECU Athena Panel member.

Claire Algar, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator

       
 Simon Bailey    

Simon Bailey

I am very excited to be a member of the SLS Athena SWAN Committee because I strongly believe in the concept that we should create an environment where the best talent is able to thrive, regardless of gender, background or any other characteristic. Initiatives such as Athena Swan will therefore be “win-win” because our School’s prospects will improve as a result of active steps which allow our best people to succeed. My objective in my role of Head of Administration is to support and facilitate all of our teaching and research activities and I hope that my membership of the Committee will allow me to make a meaningful contribution to the creation of a truly level playing field for our community.

Simon Bailey, Head of Administration

       
 Claire Barratt  


Claire Barratt

I fully support Athena SWAN in driving to achieve a culture and working environment in higher education and research organisations that recognise and support the needs and potential equally of all its employees and feel that this is paramount to the success of any organisation. In my situation, as a single working mother, I am only too aware of the importance of being able to work flexibly to achieve a productive and happy work/life balance.
 
Claire Barratt, Senior Science Support Assistant

       
 Rebecca Freeman  


Rebecca Freeman

In Life Sciences we have an reasonably even split of female and male students at undergraduate and postgraduate level but this balance quickly declines once students graduate and move into academic roles. This suggests that there are a large number of extremely talented female scientists who, for a range of reasons, do not feel able to progress in academia. Athena SWAN plays an important part in exploring and challenging these trends to ensure that any talented individual is equipped to pursue a career in science should they wish to do so.

Dr Rebecca Freeman, Head of Student Engagement and Recruitment

     


 Lorenzo Frigerio    

Lorenzo Frigerio

As Head of School I am fully committed to upholding the Athena SWAN principles of representation, progression and success for all, regardless of gender and nationality. These principles are also very important to me as a husband and father. I am pleased to be part of the Athena SWAN committee and I am prepared to work with the whole School to ensure that everyone, both academics and support staff, is empowered to succeed.

Professor Lorenzo Frigerio, Head of School

       
 Miriam Gifford  


Miriam Gifford

The Athena SWAN committee in Life Sciences discusses issues relating to career development for both male and female staff at all levels and our action plan offers solutions to address areas that need further work. Importantly it also acts to lobby both the University and external organisations to give a voice to more complex issues related to gender equality and the workplace culture in academia. As I have developed from an early career stage researcher to a more senior position I am keen to contribute with ideas and my experience to communicate the best practice in Life Sciences to others, and link to wider University strategy in these critical areas that affect us all.

Dr Miriam Gifford, Associate Professor, Deputy Director of Undergraduate Admissions and Biotechnology Research Theme Lead

       
 Raksha    

Raksha Gohel

I am an undergraduate student within Life Sciences and have an interest in pursuing a career in academia. I believe that it is important for the challenges that women may face in their scientific careers to be made aware to them at early stages, so that it is easier to overcome them later in life. As a member of the student staff liaison committee (SSLC), I endeavour to enhance the communication between staff and students, and hope that my participation in Athena SWAN will help raise awareness to students in how to tackle academic progression and gender equality in science.

Raksha Gohel, Undergraduate Student

       
 Robert Huckstepp    

Robert Huckstepp

I joined the Athena SWAN committee because I believe that science should be a meritocracy with no boundaries or barriers to anyone. The University is very driven to create an inclusive environment, and takes its’ commitment to Athena SWAN very seriously. Therefore, as a member of this committee, I believe I can really make a difference to under-represented communities in science.

Dr Robert Huckstepp, Assistant Professor and Deputy Director of Post-doctoral affairs

       
 Steve Jackson  


Steve Jackson

In both my previous role as Director of Graduate Studies, and my current role representing Research Fellows in the School of Life Sciences, I am very aware of the issues that women face in progressing through the various stages of an academic career. I strive to ensure equality and a level playing field for all, with people being judged on merit rather than gender (or any other type of discrimination), and as Athena SWAN is one initiative that will help to promote that I support it wholeheartedly.

Dr Steve Jackson, Associate Professor and Director of Post-doctoral affairs

     


amy_newmana.jpg    

Amy Newman

Having been an Athena SWAN student rep at my previous university, I am keen to get involved with the initiative again now that I have started my PhD here at Warwick. I often used to wonder why so few of my professors were female, and hope that by being part of the Athena SWAN committee I can begin to understand more fully the issues that women in science face, and offer my perspective as a postgraduate student.

Amy Newman, Environmental Microbiology PhD Student

       
 Fal Patel  


Fal Patel

I am pleased to be a part of the Life Sciences Athena SWAN committee in support of advancing the careers of women in science. As a HR professional, I am very aware of how all aspects of equality can have a positive effect in a working environment to enable individuals and teams to achieve their goals. I look forward to continuing to support this committee in promoting Athena SWAN principals within the School.
 
Fal Patel, HR Officer

     


 Antonia Sagona    

Antonia Sagona

It is my great pleasure to be part of the Athena SWAN committee of Life Sciences and assist in any way I can in ensuring equal opportunities to success for everyone at any level and any gender. As an early stage career researcher myself, mother of young children and having moved through different countries during my studies and career, I understand the challenges that early stage career scientists and especially the female ones have in establishing themselves in academia. My aim is to use the experience I have so far and via Athena SWAN help to create a supporting environment for them in Life Sciences and in the University of Warwick.

Dr Antonia Sagona, BBSRC Future Leader Fellow

       
 Philip Young  


Phil Young

My main aim on Athena SWAN is to champion gender neutrality. I strongly believe that all students and members of staff, irrespective of their gender, should be supported during their time at Warwick. My main focus is our undergraduate students and my guiding education principle is “evidence-based practice”. I have employed this approach, most notably on the Pre-Med Support Programme (PMSP), which I lead. Using evidence from previous years to guide students, we have seen a marked improvement in our success rate, with over 20% of our Biomedical Science cohort in 2015/16 gaining places at UK Medical Schools. I am delighted to sit on the Athena SWAN committee and I will campaign on behalf of all our students to ensure they can maximise their experience at Warwick, irrespective of their gender.

Dr Philip Young PhD SFHEA FRSB Director of Undergraduate Studies