Amplifying Diverse Voices: Strategies for Enhancing BAME Student Representation.
In this webinar we discussed the pressing need for better representation and support for non-white students in Universities and Students’ Unions.
Our panel shared unique insights based on their experiences:
Yasir Yeahia, Student Voice Manager at the University of Warwick Students’ Union, shared his perspectives on:
- Spatial inequality in student representation the reasons behind a whitening institution.
- The need for Students’ Unions to better support elected leaders from non-white backgrounds.
Ayoola Johnson, Access, Student Success and Development Coordinator at the University of Manchester:
- Drawing from his experience with the Manchester 10/10 project, Ayoola discussed effective frameworks that Universities and Unions can implement to empower Black and Ethnic Minority Students, promote genuine co-creation, and foster a culture that genuinely values and acts upon the insights of minority groups.
Taruna Bangia, President of the University of Westminster Students’ Union:
- Drawing from her roles as a Course Representative, School Representative, and Student Panel Advisor, Taruna shared the importance of genuine representation at various institutional levels, the challenges BAME students might face in these roles and how to ensure their voices are genuinely heard.
- As the former Vice President (Welfare) and in her current role as the President, Taruna provided insights into institutional strategies that can foster a genuine sense of belonging and ensure the welfare of minority students.
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Yasir YeahiaStudent Voice Manager at University of Warwick Students' Union
Ayoola JohnsonAccess, Student Success and Development Coordinator at University of Manchester
Taruna BangiaPresident at University of Westminster Students' Union
Student Voice Manager at the University of Nottingham SU
Student Voice Manager at University of Warwick Students' Union
Yasir has dedicated the last five years to championing student voices in Student Unions. Beginning his journey as President, Yasir is fervently committed to nurturing student potential and empowering those from marginalized backgrounds. His passion is evident in his relentless support for these individuals, guiding them towards leadership roles and making a tangible impact.
Access, Student Success and Development Coordinator at University of Manchester
Ayoola Johnson is the Access, Student Success, and Development Coordinator at The University of Manchester working predominantly on the university’s flagship programme for Black Heritage students, Manchester 10/10. Prior to Manchester, Ayoola was an elected Academic Representation Officer and a Trustee at Portsmouth Students’ Union where he led on academic representation, student voice, peer-mentoring opportunities, and student-led EDI projects. Ayoola served as a Student Committee Member of RAISE, a student engagement network, and his passion lies in building inclusive spaces in higher education, social mobility, student engagement, and empowering true student partnerships.
President at University of Westminster Students' Union
Taruna is a graduate in urban planning, and throughout her tenure at the University of Westminster, she has demonstrated leadership and commitment, from representing academic interests as a Course Representative to welcoming and guiding new students. Before her current presidential role, she served as Vice President (Welfare) and School Representative, sitting on the University Student Experience Committee, and played an essential role in ensuring high academic standards as a Student Panel Advisor. Taruna is not only a voice for the students but also a beacon of support, always striving to create an enriching academic and community experience for her peers.
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