SETU has been announced as the overall winner of the Eucen SMILE Diversity Awards 2023 in Barcelona for the most inspiring abstract addressing diversity and inclusion in higher education.
The European SMILE Diversity Awards ceremony was held recently to recognise the most innovative and transferable initiatives in diversity and inclusion in higher education. Six finalists were announced at the SMILE conference, with SETU making up two of those selected.
The first abstract detailed SETU’s work on inclusive gender equality and LGBTQ+ inclusion. The abstract titled “Beyond the Binary - Collaborating to embed sustainable and inclusive gender equality in the Irish HE sector” was presented at the event by Dr Allison Kenneally, SETU’s Vice President for Equality Diversity, and Inclusion.
The 2023 Diversity and Inclusion Award was conferred as part of the SMILE project, with the aims of finding inspiring and innovative solutions to help institutions implement or improve their current diversity and inclusion strategy, showcase the best diversity and inclusion practices, highlight the excellence of existing projects and initiatives and spread the awareness about diversity and inclusion initiatives, innovative solutions, tools or approaches, among HEIs, policymakers, and civil society.
Accepting the award, Dr Kenneally said, “I am honoured to accept this award on behalf of SETU, and our collaborative partners including TUS, University of Galway, Carlow College, Mary Immaculate College, and Shout Out, who have worked over a number of years to embed inclusive gender equality into the culture of our universities. We will continue to work to ensure that our universities are safe spaces, where all are welcomed and included.”
The second piece shortlisted was “Understanding and embedding diversity in an Irish university”. This abstract focused on initiatives to embed and enhance gender equality by implementing actions aimed at tackling and preventing sexual harassment and violence. This paper was presented by Roisin Shanahan, Sexual Violence and Harassment Prevention and Response Manager, Neil Wylie, Learning Technologist at SETU, and Dr Allison Kenneally.
Ms Shanahan said, “It was an honour to be shortlisted and to be a finalist for a European award and to see the efforts and work we do in SETU to tackle sexual violence and harassment acknowledged.”
Neil Wylie, Learning Technologist at SETU added, “It has been great collaborating with the EDI office on the implementation of the Bystander Intervention programme at SETU, and working with them to become finalists in the Eucen SMILE award.”