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GHWY Evidence & Impact Conference success

The GHWY Evidence & Impact Conference took place on 19 May, bringing together professionals from across and beyond the education sector to share recent research and evaluation relating to Widening Participation in the West Yorkshire local context. 

Hosted online, the conference included sixteen paper presentations from academics, evaluators, outreach practitioners and other stakeholders, as well as keynote speeches from Dr Eliza Kozman, Deputy Director of TASO; Professor Nick Emmel of the University of Leeds; and Leeds Beckett University’s Deputy VC, Tracey Lancaster.  

The conference was themed around three key topics: 

  1. Groups underrepresented in HE, with talks outlining recent research either carried out, or commissioned, by GHWY looking at the experiences of Black, Asian and minority ethnic learners; access to HE in West Yorkshire for young people from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller backgrounds; the experiences of male learners from white working class backgrounds; and care-experienced learners. 
  1. Community engagement, which included reflections on GHWY’s recent Community Grants programme from two community organisation practitioners and GHWY staff. 
  1. Collaborative approaches to outreach, with presentations covering a wide range of approaches including collaboration between HE providers, collaboration with industry partners, with local authorities, and collaboration with HE students. 

Over 150 delegates attended presentations as well as taking part in discussion groups and workshops linked to the three themes, all of which facilitated lively discussion around the questions of what works in Widening Participation and how we can best evidence the impact of the work being done across the sector. 

To enable these discussions to continue and allow dissemination of good practice, GHWY will be setting up an Evidence & Impact TEAMS channel. Contact s.lawrence2@leeds.ac.uk if you are interested in being added to this channel. 

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