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Development opportunities

We provide funding and mentoring for staff members to attend targeted development opportunities.

If you're interested in any of our opportunities, please speak to a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Team or email We'll also let you know via notices on the Staff Portal and in In Brief when we're accepting applications for our various development opportunities.

Springboard Women's Development Programme

Springboard is a programme that enables women to identify clear, practical and realistic steps that they can take to make a better world for themselves at work and home, while building the practical skills and confidence to take these steps. More than 230,000 women worldwide have used Springboard, including nearly 300 women at the University of Reading.

The University runs at least one Springboard cohort each year. The Women's Springboard Network was set up in November 2019 for those who have attended the Programme

Visit the Springboard website for more information.

RISE Programme

Promoting and supporting diversity in the workplace is intrinsically about valuing everyone in the organisation as an individual. To reap the benefits of a diverse workforce, it is vital to have an inclusive environment where everyone feels able to participate. Aspiring to be a diverse and inclusive organisation requires support from a broad range of colleagues.

This programme has been jointly developed by the People Development team, the Dean of Diversity and Inclusion and The Pacific Institute (TPI) to serve as a catalyst for building/enhancing on our existing employee engagement.

In order to be Ready for an Inclusive and Supportive Environment, participants will focus firstly on themselves as individuals and then on the wider organisation.

The RISE@ programme is open to all colleagues across the University that are interested in building and promoting a diverse and inclusive culture at the University of Reading.

To apply or for further information please email People Development.

Aurora Women's Leadership Development Programme

The University of Reading is proud to support the Aurora leadership development programme, sponsoring a number of female staff to attend each year. We're also grateful for the support from our senior female leaders who attend as role models, and other senior leaders who provide mentoring support during the programme. Since 2013, more than 40 women from Reading have participated in the programme.

Visit the Advance HE website for more information.

Diversifying Leadership

The Diversifying Leadership programme is designed to support early-career academics, professional services staff, Lecturers and Senior Lecturers from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.

The programme explores leadership theory, cultural identity, and power and influence. We are pleased to sponsor places on this programme on an annual basis.

Visit the Advance HE website for more information.

Stellar HE

The Stellar HE programme is for BAME professional support staff, academics and researchers at middle to senior management level who aspire to senior leadership positions in higher education.

The programme has been designed specifically to develop and implement leadership strategies that reflect the unique challenges and experiences of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic academic and professional staff across the HE sector.

We are pleased to sponsor a place on this programme on an annual basis.

Visit the Stellar HE website for more information.

Stonewall LGBT Role Models Programme

Role models have a critical role to play in creating inclusive environments and advancing fair treatment for LGBT people at work, at home and in their communities.

The Stonewall one-day LGBT Role Models Programme is aimed at LGBT staff at all career levels, and the University will centrally fund up to eight places on the LGBT Role Models Programme over the next 12 months, with the request that the School or Service covers the cost of travel to the events for the participants.

Visit the Stonewall LGBT Role Models Programme website for more information.

Stonewall Leadership Programme

The Stonewall Leadership Programme is a unique opportunity for senior LGBT professionals to explore what it means to be an authentic leader and to reflect on the relationship between your identity as an LGBT person and your leadership performance in the workplace.

We are pleased to sponsor places on this programme on an annual basis.

Visit the Stonewall Leadership Programme website for more information.

Stonewall Workplace Conference

We aim to send some of our staff to the Stonewall Workplace Conference every year.

Conferences are held in London, Manchester, Cardiff and Edinburgh, when hundreds of delegates meet to learn best practice from inclusion specialists. There are a wide variety of sessions on offer, and delegates leave with an action plan and access to the latest Stonewall research and resources.