Black History Month at UCL has drawn to a close with a passionate panel on Blackademia.
The fourth annual event, hosted by UCLU, has been a month long celebration of the culture and achievements of the BME community. However, it marks a longer tradition of diversity at UCL, as the university first opened its doors to all students regardless of racial background at its founding.
A variety of events have been put on throughout the past month, ranging from talks on black history in London to screenings of Beyoncé’s “Lemonade”. One of the final events, a panel called “Blackademia”, was a discussion on the state of the BME community in academia.
It was hosted by Sayeeda Ali, UCLU BME Students’ Officer, and chaired by many UCL professors. Several different topics were addressed, including the racial attainment gap, the institutionalised racism embedded in universities, and even UCL’s own efforts to improve racial equality.
Speaking on the latter subject, Professor Ijeoma Uchegbu detailed many of the university’s attempts to provide a more inclusive and equal environment for BME students. “So when you come to UCL, you feel empowered. You don’t feel like you’ve come into your master’s house”, she said, explaining the reasoning behind UCL’s undertakings.
These efforts have included the anonymous marking of papers and a more diverse panel recruitment of staff.
Featured image: UCL