Friday, 31 May 2019

BME in STEM - A Bristol University Report 2019

Copyright BME in STEM Report

On 6th February 2019, Black2Nature attended a conference at Bristol University, BME in STEM organised by a first-year PhD student, Lara Lalemi.

Lara Lalemi opening at BME in STEM Conference Panel
Copyright BME in STEM Report

The report produced is essential reading for anyone who wants to see an increase in diversity in the nature conservation, nature media and environmental sectors.

BME in STEM Report

Primary recommendations (for within 1-5 years implementation) are:
  • Unconscious bias training for all University staff and students, mandatory for members of committees or interview panels, and for personnel involved in teaching.
  • Instigate mentoring schemes aimed at supporting BAME accepted applicants, students, and staff.
  • Provide a diverse curriculum that includes BAME contributions to science and ensures diversity on teaching committees. Where it is not possible to find diversity in professorial staff, the introduction of BAME post-doctorates and postgraduates to the committee should be implemented.
  • Introduce anonymised applications in the undergraduate recruitment process.
  • BAME role models are needed at all career stages and can be provided through outreach activities, invited speakers and by ensuring the curriculum includes contributions made by BAME individuals to STEM.

    BME in STEM Conference Panel
    Copyright BME in STEM Report

    A detailed action plan summarising all of the recommendations can be found at the very end of this document.

    Within a year of submitting this report, a follow-up review will be conducted to assess how far the university has come in implementing these changes.

    Panel and Speakers:

    BME in STEM Conference Panel
    Copyright BME in STEM Report

    • Cllr. Cleo Lake; the Rt. Hon. The Lord Mayor of Bristol
    • Dr Erinma Ochu MBE; Lecturer in Science Communication and Future Media at the University
      of Salford
    • Dr Emmanuel Adukwu; Senior Lecturer (Biomedical Science) and Employability Lead –
      Coordinator UWE Africa Network and Africa Week at UWE
    • Dr Mark Richards; Senior Teaching Fellow and Head of Physics Outreach at Imperial College
    • Professor Fred Manby; Professor of Theoretical Chemistry at University of Bristol
    • Professor Christina Hicks; Lecturer in Political Ecology at Lancaster University
    • Nasra Ayub; Undergraduate Education Officer at University of Bristol Student Union Doctoral College 

  • Cleo Lake at BME in STEM Conference Panel
    Copyright BME in STEM Report

    • Facilitators:

    • Mr Sammuel Zubair; University of Bristol
    • Ms. Rebecca Scott; University of Bristol
    • Mr Robiu Salisu; University of Bristol
    • Miss Nuzhat Tabassum; University of Bristol
    • Miss Angela Suriyakumaran; University of Bristol
    • Mr Khalid Hammad; University of Bristol
    • Mrs. Helena Craig; Bristol local
    • Dr Mark Richards; Imperial College London
    • Ms. Jenny Hawkins; University of Bristol, GW4+

    BME in STEM Conference Panel
    Copyright BME in STEM Report

    Helping Members:

    • Ms Sally Patterson; University of Bristol
    • Miss Tumi Edun; University of Bristol
    • Miss Vicky Phung; University of Bristol
    • Miss Maggie Kadembo; University of Bristol
    • Mr David Nzewi; University of Bristol
    • Miss Nana Agyare; University of Bristol
    • Miss Mwaka Sipula; University of Bristol
    • Mr Jamie Davis; University of Bristol
    • Mr Julio Mkok; University of Bristol
    • Miss Emma Crossley; University of Bristol
    • Miss Mae Masters; University of Bristol
    • Miss Joanna Clowes; University of Bristol
    • Miss Marla Mbemba; University of Bristol
    • Dr Natalie Pridmore; University of Bristol


    1. diversity-landscape-of-the-chemical-sciences-report_web-2.pdf accessed 10/03/2019.
    2. accessed 10/03/2019.
    3. Higher education student and staff records, HESA, 2017,
    4. H. Dualeh, BME Attainment gap, Bristol SU, 2017, 1-37
      bce9faf44cbd accessed 03/03/2019.
    6. S.R. Glover, T.G. Harrison, D.E. Shallcross, Acta Didactica Napocensia, 2016, 9, 79-97.
    7. C. L Muller, S. Roberts, R. C. Wilson, J. J. Remedios, S. Illingworth, R. Graves, T. Trent, J.
      Henderson, J. Wilkinson, M. Wilkinson and A. Desai, Phys. Educ. 2013, 48, 17
    8. accessed 10/03/2019.
    10. accessed 10/03/2019.

About the Author

 Young environmentalist and birder Mya-Rose Birdgirl Craig
Copyright Mya-Rose Birdgirl Craig 

Mya-Rose Craig is a 17-year-old young British Bangladeshi birder, naturalist, conservationist, environmentalist, activist, writer and speaker. She is based near Bristol and writes posts about birding, conservation and environmental issues from around the world. 

She has been involved in the UK organisation of the Youth Strikes encouraging young people from around the world to not go to school once a month and protest instead demanding immediate action to prevent climate breakdown. This is an interview in New Statesman.

She was a Bristol European Green Capital Ambassador along with Kevin McCloud, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Tony Juniper, Simon King, Miranda Krestovnikoff and Shaun the Sheep! See the full list of Bristol Ambassadors. She has also been listed with the singer-songwriter George Ezra and actress Maisie Williams from Game of Thrones as one of Bristol's most influential young people

She organised four nature is helping to run four more in 2019. She also organised a conference, Race Equality in Nature, in June 2016 aiming to increase the ethnic diversity in nature and plans two more in 2019. She has also set up Black2Nature with the aim of working with organisations to increase the access to nature of Visible Minority Ethnic people and is President. Please connect with her on LinkedIn (Mya-Rose Birdgirl Craig) so that she can invite you to join the Race Equality in Nature LinkedIn Group and be part of the change. 

She has given over 50 talks, speaking at conferences such as being on a panel with George Monbiot and Caroline Lucas on Sustainability and the Future of Cities. She is a Minister in Chris Packham's Manifesto for Nature in 2018 and spoke in front of 10,000 people at the Walk for Nature. She has also appeared on TV and radio and is particularly proud of being in Silent Roars, a short film which was part of Listen to Britain 2017

She has been awarded the Bath and West Show Environmental Youth Award 2017 for Bristol for her Black2Nature work EYA 2017. She was also listed as one of Bristol's BME top 100 powerlist.

She loved seeing Mountain Gorillas in East Africa and Penguins in Antarctica over Christmas 2015, her 7th continent. She became the youngest person to see 5000 birds in 2019 age 16 and is looking forward to visiting Brazil birding in 2019 and hopes to see half the birds in the world there. Please also like her Birdgirl Facebook Page and follow her on Birdgirl Twitter. If you would like to contact Mya-Rose about her work, please e-mail

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