Enabling Equal Access to Opportunity in a Research-led Teaching and Learning Environment

Matthew Ingram, Office of Philanthropic Partnerships and Alumni, University of York

Abstract

Research-led teaching and learning clearly has the potential to offer students the chance to achieve incredible things as part of their studies – it might enable students to place themselves at the forefront of research discourses, to develop as independent and entrepreneurial thinkers, and to challenge the very latest thinking. The challenge in hand, however, is ensuring that this potential is open to all students, and that students, regardless of their socio-economic background and family support, have the same access to materials and resources that will aid research-led teaching and learning?

In this session, members of the Office of Philanthropic Partnerships and Alumni will discuss ways in which we can level the playing field when opening up opportunities for students to learn through research. Using its suite of student-focused fundraising programmes, this workshop aims to demonstrate how:

  • departments can encourage students to fundraise for activities that support
    their research;
  • the Office of Philanthropic Partnerships and Alumni can support students in
    their fundraising;
  • fundraising can bridge the gap between undergraduate and postgraduate
    levels of study, and how;
  • embedding fundraising into curricula can encourage the development of
    transferable skills that will boost the employability prospects of your students.

Hearing first-hand from students and departments that have already benefited from our support, this workshop will give attendees the chance to engage in a dialogue about the systemic pressures facing many students in a research-led learning environment, and how we can take practical steps to ensure that access to opportunity remains open to all.

Chair’s Report

Workshop Panopto video recording (University of York login required)

In this exciting workshop we heard about Matthew’s mission to help students make their ideas become reality by helping them crowdfund and showcase their ideas to York staff, students and alumni.

YuStart is at the forefront of crowdfunding offering students, the creators, a chance to do something special. Ideas may include making a film, buying new kit for sports teams, putting on a play, making a CD, or perhaps even funding research into some of the world’s challenges.

YuStart has a team of committed University of York staff who are here to help students prepare their ideas, make a pitching video and the raise money.

Matthew discussed ways in which the playing field can be levelled when opening up opportunities for students to learn through research.

  • departments can encourage students to fundraise for activities that support their research;
  • the Office of Philanthropic Partnerships and Alumni can support students in their fundraising;
  • fundraising can bridge the gap between undergraduate and postgraduate levels of study, and how;
  • embedding fundraising into curricula can encourage the development of transferable skills that will boost the employability prospects of your students.

An interesting example was outlined by Matt from Omar who raised over £7,000 through the YuStart project to fund an Opera to engage young people safely and sensitively with issues surrounding terrorism.

A young man, around 15 years old, sits cross legged at the front of the stage, wrapped in a blanket with a cushion on the floor next to him. Four people are stood a few feet behind the man, wearing matching grey boiler suits and holding placards. One placard reads ‘NOT HERE’, the next is obscured but reads ‘ONE TO OVE” and another reads “BOOM IN MILES AWAY

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