When the first International Women’s Day took place, women in the United Kingdom were still campaigning for the right to vote. In 1911, British women had only been admitted to university degrees for the previous 33 years and would not be admitted to Oxford until 1920 or Cambridge until 1947.
On 8 March, women’s achievements are celebrated, and we are reminded of the inequalities that still exist and prevent women and girls from accessing education, working in a fair environment and becoming politically empowered.
The University of Kent is committed to equality, diversity and inclusivity and the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Julia Goodfellow, is the Executive Group Champion for Gender and Sexuality.
As part of work to ensure gender equality, Kent has committed to the Athena SWAN Charter, which aims to advance the representation of women in science, technology, engineering, medicine and mathematics (STEMM).
While the focus of the Charter is on the Sciences, the work of the Athena SWAN Working Group is aimed at improving the working environment of all our staff- both men and women.
Engineering and Digital Arts (EDA) are working towards an Athena SWAN Award and today held a charity coffee morning to celebrate International Women’s Day and raise funds for Rising Sun, a local voluntary organisation in Kent addressing domestic violence and providing services for women, children and families.