How ten leading universities are working to champion gender equality


A global champion for women and girls, UN Women is the United Nations entity dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women.

In September 2014, UN Women launched HeForShe, a solidarity movement for gender equality, with the aim of engaging and encouraging men and boys to take action against the gender inequality which women across the world face. The global initiative is led by Elizabeth Nyamayaro, Executive Head of the HeForShe Movement, who features in the #1 spot in our 50 TED talks by 50 talented black women post.

This Fall UN Women unveiled the first ever HeForShe IMPACT 10X10X10 University Parity Report, where 10 leading global universities lay out concrete commitments toward achieving gender parity. HeForShe IMPACT 10x10x10 engages key decision makers in governments, corporations, and universities around the world to drive change from the top. IMPACT Champions make gender equality an institutional priority by implementing the HeForShe IMPACT framework and developing three bold, game-changing commitments to advance and achieve gender equality for all.


10x10x10 IMPACT University Champions

The group of ten IMPACT universities span eight countries across five continents, including the institution I graduated from, the University of Leicester. As champions for the campaign, the universities have committed to take bold, game-changing action to achieve gender equality and to drive change within their institutions and across higher education. One of the University of Leicester’s goals is to increase female Professorial representation overall by an average of 1.5% each year to reach 30% by 2020.


Kate Bradley, Director of Human Resources at the University of Leicester explains, “Being part of HeForShe has opened up a range of possibilities and opportunities. We have benefitted from sharing and learning from all the nine universities. HeForShe has created an energy and focus on campus which we are building on through the student staff association. Our next big event is an Ideathon to be held in November. This is being replicated across all ten universities and the UN will take the best ideas from these events forward.”

Kate Bradley has the following advice for anyone who wants to pursue an academic career:

Seek out opportunities
Ensure from the earlier stages of your career you seek development opportunities that are available. You create your own through and make sure you have a mentor and at times a coach.

Analyze your skill set
Spend time planning your next career move. Think about what skills and experience you need to acquire to put yourself in the best possible position to secure the next role, or to be able to perform your current role better.

Broaden your network and knowledge
See new opportunities as learning opportunities. Engage with people from other sectors and professional services so you widen your perspectives and knowledge.

To find out more about the HeForShe IMPACT 10x10x10 campaign visit


Post by Octavia Goredema @OctaviaGoredema

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