Here at Regent’s Park College, we aim to be as inclusive as possible. We have a zero hate policy and pride ourselves on our community spirit and supportive nature, though we know that there is always more to be done. We all need to do more and do better. In light of recent events in both the UK and the US, it is more important than ever for members of the global community to speak out against racial injustices. As an Oxford University college, we are going to use our voice to help encourage support of the Black Lives Matter movement, and support our current black students, as well as prospective ones.
Support the black lives matter movement now:
- Sign an open letter to Oxford University demanding they take steps to help tackle systemic racism and support black students and staff.
- A website which gives you a variety of ways to help the BLM movement.
- A google doc containing a to-do list of practical ways to help the BLM movement from the UK
- A link to a google doc containing good books to read, shows, movies, and Ted Talks to watch in order to educate yourself on the injustices of systemic racism
- A link to a google doc containing a list of black owned businesses so you can support the black community
- A link to a list of things you can do to support the black community by black owned fashion brand Wales Bonner
- Donate to these funds to help the black transgender community
- Information on how to support the BAME trans community.
- An Instagram account which highlights different and overlooked black artists
- A google doc which is an open list of creators of colour
Welfare links for current students:
We would like to encourage members of our community to access support from college and University if the recent events are impacting you. Generally, we realise that racial injutsice is a deeply rooted problem which causes a great amount of distress and hurt. We would like to encourage you to access our support systems, and if you have any further questions you may wish to contact our Welfare Rep, Ellie Harrington.
- Peer supporters! Email any one of our college peer supporters, trained to listen to your anxieties/issues and offer comfort and support. Our current peer supporters are: Ellie Harrington, Ben Bilefield, Fran Sisson, David Crowther.
- A link to the University counselling service , their email is firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment
- A link to find general information about welfare at Regent’s Park College.
- Black Minds Matter- an organsiation making specialised help available for all black people
- Peers of colour are a group of peer supporters who offer support to people of colour. They can be found on Facebook at Oxford University Peers of Colour and anyone who would like to seek support can email email@example.com and the counselling service will connect you to one of the peers.
- Nightline operate 8pm-midnight over instant messaging.
- Calm have compiled a list of resources to help amplify black voices.
- A heartwarming YouTube video about Hair Love for the black community
- Oxford Nightline has a post containing rescources to support black mental health on their instagram page.
Access links for BAME prospective students and offer holders:
The lack of diversity within Oxbridge is noticably disapppointing. Here at Regent’s we want to encourage BAME students to apply. Below is a list of useful resources to hopefully mitigate the impacts of systemic racism on your application to Oxbridge (and hopefully to Regent’s Park College), or to make you feel more comfortable about attending. Thank you to InsideUni for compiling this list.
- Target Oxbridge (now open!) – This is a free program that aims to help Black African and Caribbean students (including students of mixed race with Black African and Caribbean heritage) increase their chances of getting into the Universities of Oxford or Cambridge.
- Target Oxbridge podcast – This podcast covers the experience and advice from Target Oxbridge students (who are now at Oxford or Cambridge) about applying.
- Courtney Daniella on ‘what it’s like to be a black student at Cambridge’ – Courtney (a vlogger and Cambridge grad) has done multiple videos on life at Cambridge. This is one example and you can easily find others via YouTube.
- Scholarships (Oxford and Cambridge) – Both universities have scholarships that support applicants from Black African and Caribbean heritages: Oxford-Arlan Hamilton & Earline Butler Sims Scholarship (Oxford) and the Stormzy Scholarship (Cambridge). It’s worth noting that, if you need financial assistance, both universities also have a bursary system which is based on your household’s income. Details about this, and other possible external organisations can be found through the links above.
- Cambridge ACS (link to FB page) Cambridge University African Caribbean Society – CUACS (link to website) is a thriving community of Cambridge students from African and Carribean descent and they host multiple outreach events for prospective Black students. Check out their Facebook page for updates about their outreach events, or feel free to reach out to them directly via firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Oxford ACS (link to FB page) Oxford African and Caribbean Society – OxACS (link to website) is a student community in Oxford that promotes and celebrates African and Caribbean culture. They run numerous initiatives throughout the year to support Black prospective students. This includes a mentorship scheme for attendees of their main outreach conference alongside annual admissions workshops. Feel free to contact them on email@example.com to learn more about these opportunities.
- Black and Ethnic Minority (BME) University open days – Colleges at Oxford and Cambridge hold events for ethnic minority prospective students throughout the year. Various in-person events have been cancelled due to COVID-19, so we are waiting to see which ones move online. At the moment, these are the ones we’ve heard about: Kings’, Cambridge (BME online open day) & Trinity Hall, Cambridge (BME online open day)It’s worth looking through other Oxford and Cambridge college websites as many are starting to announce online open days. Often you can find these on the ‘Outreach’ or ‘Access’ sections of their websites. If you are unsure, you can also get in touch with colleges by email (normally they will have an ‘outreach’ or ‘admissions’ email on their website).
- FLY Cambridge FLY Guide to Cambridge – FLY is a network of students and a forum for women and non-binary people of colour in Cambridge. They have various resources and blog posts on their website aimed at freshers which, even if you are a prospective student, may be interesting to read. This is their guide to Cambridge.
The resources we’ve listed here are ones that are specific to Oxbridge. However, there are other more broad schemes which offer university application support. For example, Generating Genius which is aimed at Y12 STEM (Science Technology, Engineering, and Maths) students from Black African or Caribbean backgrounds. It’s worth remembering that many other outreach schemes (such as the SEO Schools scheme ) are aimed at students from a variety of backgrounds, including ethnic minorities.
Resource names listed: Target Oxbridge, scholarships, BME open days, Cambridge University ACS, Oxford ACS
Contributions of members of RPC to the BLM movement.
- American visiting student Audrey Black has created a google doc containing ways that we can help the BLM from the UK
- Theology student Ginny Gough wrote this piece on ending systemic racism. She calls with elegance for action, not simply repeated words of solidarity.
How we will be better and do more:
It is important that as a community we reflect and improve, to ensure that the Regent’s Park JCR is an open and inclusive place: a place where people feel welcome and safe to be who they are and to speak out against injustice. However, beyond words, we need to take active steps towards this.
- In an extraordinary meeting, Regent’s Park JCR passed a motion condemning the Christ Church JCR and pertinent college authorities in their handling of, and actions following, their JCR Hustings on May 31st.
- We also resolved to commit to a thorough review of our Constitution and Standing Orders.
- The formation of a student consultative group to discuss issues of equality and inclusion in the JCR more broadly.
We understand that there is more to be done, and more will be forthcoming as this page is updated.