UWE Bristol has launched two new bursaries to support students studying subjects in the Faculty of Arts, Creative Industries and Education (ACE).
The bursaries will provide ten students £1,000 a year for the first two years of their study and, in return for the bursary, students will be expected to produce a piece of project work advancing the “equality, diversity and strategic aims” of the university.
The Paul Stephenson Bursary is designed to support up to five students from Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds, and the Dean’s Bursary will support five students from “low participating neighbourhoods” – areas where young people traditionally do not consider higher education as an option.
The Paul Stephenson Bursary is named after Paul Stephenson OBE, a civil rights campaigner who led a successful 60-day boycott of the Bristol Omnibus Company in 1963, protesting against their refusal to employ black and Asian drivers or conductors.
He was awarded an honorary degree of master of education from UWE Bristol in 2009, the same year he received an OBE. Stephenson worked closely with the university to launch the bursary.
“Dad always promoted the importance of education in and outside the house,” says Fumi, Stephenson’s daughter.
“He is very happy to know that there is a bursary to support the gap in the system whereby talent can be supported in a meaningful way for the local community.’’
The Paul Stephenson Bursary is exclusively for BAME students, but the Dean’s Bursary is available to any students who live in neighbourhoods that traditionally do not participate in higher education.
“Education is a vehicle for changing lives,” says professor Jane Roscoe, pro-vice chancellor and executive dean for the ACE Faculty. “We are committed to ensuring that all people get access to higher education at UWE Bristol.
“We recognise that for some people the challenges they have faced in their lives may mean that they may not have seen higher education as an option for them.
“We hope that with these two bursaries we can start to change those perceptions and enable more people to continue their learning and make a difference to their lives.”
Main photo of Paul Stephenson by Sarah Koury – KoLAB Studios.