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Embedding Mental Wellbeing in the Curriculum – International

Diversifying Leadership

The programme will explore themes of power and influence, demystifying leadership, cultural identity and cultural capital, increasing your visibility and authentic leadership.

There is a clear under-representation of leaders from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds in higher education (HE) institutions in the UK at all levels but particularly at senior levels. There is also documented evidence of the poor experiences of many Black, Asian and minority ethnic academic staff in UK HE including experiences related to leadership roles.

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Tackling the under-representation of Black, Asian and minority ethnic leaders in UK higher education institutions

The Diversifying Leadership programme is designed to support early-career academics and professional services staff from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds who are about to take their first steps into a leadership role. It explores themes of power and influence, demystifying leadership, cultural identity and cultural capital, increasing your visibility and authentic leadership and features leadership stories from high-profile HE leaders.


In this video Melissa Jogie, Co-director of the Diversifying Leadership Programme, introduces the programme and explains the benefits of participation.

Ready to apply?

If you are ready to start the application process for Diversifying Leadership, you can download the personal statement form and the sponsor statement form below:

Download Resource

Personal Statement Form

Download Resource

Sponsor Statement Form


How is the programme delivered?

The programme comprises three one-day online workshops, two facilitated online action learning sets and access to online resources as part of the programme.

Orientation webinar

Module one: Leadership, 'Black, Asian and minority ethnic leadership' and lessons from the labyrinth 
Module two: Leadership, power and influence: changing the game
Module three (Action learning set): Speaking actions into existence 
Module four: Leadership tomorrow: vision, voice and visibility 
Module five (Action learning set): Speaking actions into existence

Meet the delivery team

Dr Melissa Jogie

Institutional Research Culture Lead
University of Roehampton
Dr Melissa Jogie
Dr Melissa Jogie is the Institutional Research Culture Lead at the University of Roehampton, where she designs and delivers on university wide initiatives to develop a research and knowledge exchange culture for both staff and post-graduate students.

Sanchia Alasia

Interim Director of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion
London South Bank University
Image of Sanchia Alasia
Sanchia is an award-winning specialist in equality diversity and human resources and has over 16 years’ experience of working in this field across the public sector. She has worked across the public sector to help move organisations towards being truly being inclusive, valuing their staff and creating a culture where staff feel supported, appreciated, and respected.

What are the programme outcomes

The programme requires the participant to be supported by a sponsor. Institutions wanting to build a more diverse leadership pipeline will gain leaders better equipped to navigate organisational culture with a clearer perspective on their own potential – and the potential of others – and how to access it. 

Participants will have explored concepts such as ‘authentic leadership’, allowing the self-identity of their own leadership style and role as a leader to emerge, as well considering their motivation and influences. The programme enables exploration of various elements of leadership and has been designed to provide a safe place in which to discuss issues relating to their experiences of working in HE. As a result, participants build confidence, feel empowered and expand their professional strengths.

Diversifying Leadership longitudinal study

Cracking the concrete ceiling: Tracking the impact of the Diversifying Leadership programme was commissioned by Advance HE to explore leadership development for black and minority ethnic staff in higher education. View summary findings or read the full report.

Cracking the concrete ceiling: Tracking the impact of the Diversifying Leadership programme
Cracking the concrete ceiling: Tracking the impact of the Diversifying Leadership programme View Document


As part of the programme, participants are required to secure a sponsor from within their institution who will support them during the programme and potentially beyond. The time commitment will be negotiated between the sponsor and the participant.

Role of a Sponsor 

Sponsorship is a special kind of relationship in which a more senior colleague provides structured support which may include:

  • creating research productivity;
  • career advice & guidance;
  • navigate internal politics & structures; and
  • provides access to projects

The Sponsor also uses his or her influence with senior members of staff to advocate for the participant. 

Sponsor Toolkit

The Sponsor Toolkit is an additional resource for sponsors, consisting of web-based materials and interactive support. It has been made available to ensure sponsors have a better understanding of the specific issues facing Black, Asian and minority ethnic early career leaders and are confident to carry out their role in championing them. The toolkit is informed by relevant academic literature and good practice on sponsorship and the experience and development of aspiring Black, Asian and minority ethnic leaders.

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Diversifying Leadership Sponsor Toolkit