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Black Advisory Hub

 

As the Black Advisory Hub continues to develop, here are answers to some of the more common questions that are asked by students, staff members and people around the University community. Take a look to see if your questions might have been answered here. If not, please contact us.

 

Who created the Black Advisory Hub?

The idea for a centrally-coordinated resource - the Black Advisory Hub - was born following the recommendation of a group of Black undergraduate students. This came as part of a set of suggestions for educational interventions to support the educational experience and academic performance of Black British undergraduates, as one of the outcomes of the broader APP PAR Project (see FAQ below).

A team of Black student co-creators and project associates was recruited in early 2020 to create the online Hub, as a launching pad for future initiatives.  These webpages were designed by the student team, and includes their curated links and resources that they think will be particularly useful to new and current Black students at Cambridge.  Throughout the webpages you will find short reflections from the students, as well as quotes drawn from other students and staff during the consultation process. 

The next steps for the Black Advisory Hub will be to build on these resources, to create opportunities for more interaction, and to develop a programme of events, such as the induction for incoming students at the start of the academic year. We will also seek opportunities to engage with staff about inclusive curriculum, teaching and learning practices.  

The Black Advisory Hub is a live site, and will be continually updated and enhanced by student co-creators across the coming years as we work to support the range of student-led and other relevant University initiatives to enhance Black students' educational experiences at Cambridge. 

Who is the Black Advisory Hub for?

The audience for the Black Advisory Hub may be any member of the University, students or staff - Black or not. However, its utility will vary among members of the collegiate University. Black students may benefit from being signposted to the support services and student groups listed, staff members and others looking to learn more about anti-racism work and inclusion may benefit from consulting the (upcoming) anti-racism glossary and the resources listed under staff engagement. While the Hub is primarily and initially set up to support students, it is also intended to help staff in better supporting their Black students. Everyone is welcome to visit and engage with the Black Advisory Hub.

How does the Black Advisory Hub support students?

The Black Advisory Hub works as a centrally-coordinated resource for all Black students with strong collaboration across the collegiate University. It contains carefully curated links to other services and resources across the university. It will be a safe space - for now, online rather than physical - for students, and will work with the larger University to better address issues pertaining to Black experiences, from educational and welfare support to financial and careers support.

Students: we want you to engage with the Hub to find resources that will help you navigate Cambridge on your own terms, to share your experiences of Blackness, and to build a strong sense of community that is well integrated within the larger University community. Whether you are struggling with your studies, worried about something, or have amazing ideas that could benefit the community of Black students and the wider University, please do talk to us.

How can people get involved with the Black Advisory Hub?

To better support Black students, the Black Advisory Hub welcomes students-led societies or any individual who has ideas and is passionate about improving Black students outcomes at Cambridge. If this is you, please reach out to the Black Advisory Hub team, whether you are a member of a College, Department, institution or society.

What is the APP PAR Project?

The Access and Participation Plan Participatory Action Research Project (the APP PAR Project) was started in 2019 to investigate the awarding gaps of specific student cohorts at Cambridge, as identified in the University's Access and Participation Plan 2019-2025. It involves qualitative research to support the statistical data about the two most significant awarding gaps experienced by our students, with two intersecting strands: one focused on Black British undergraduates and the other on disabled students with declared mental health conditions.

This ongoing project is coordinated by the Cambridge Centre for Teaching and Learning and involves three cycles of student-led research, with twenty students recruited as research assistants per cycle. Outcomes from Cycle 1 (2019-2020) and Cycle 2 (2020-2021) can be found on the APP PAR Project webpages.  

Does the Black Advisory Hub manage student complaints or concerns?

While the Black Advisory Hub at this point does not have the professional expertise to counsel students, we hope to make it easier for Black students to find the support they need.

Students: if you face any unfair treatment by a student of staff of the University and don’t know what to do, consult our guiding notes on how to report a case of unfair treatment, be it racism or discrimination. If you then want to talk to someone in a safe space before taking action, please do contact us and we will be happy to help you navigate the system available to support you.

How will the Black Advisory Hub provide opportunities for interaction?

The Black Advisory Hub is currently developing a programme of events for Black students to meet eachother, network and build a support system.  For instance, we are planning an induction event for incoming new Black students at the beginning of the next academic year, in September 2021. We will also work with student groups to organise or co-facilitate other events and projects. At the very least, we will provide a platform for Black students to find out about related events and to showcase other initiatives of interest developed by Black undergraduates and postgraduates. Please do check in to the News feed regularly to hear about these events.