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Justine Greening to launch University’s social mobility pledge


The Rt Hon Justine Greening, former MP and Education Secretary, launching the Social Mobility Pledge

Former Education Secretary backs University of Bradford’s plan to improve access to education and raise standards

Note to readers: to read the latest update of this story, which details Justine Greening's virtual visit.

The University of Bradford’s commitment to improving access to higher education and raising standards will be underlined this week with the launch of its Social Mobility Pledge.

The Pledge is a commitment to put things like outreach, access and recruitment at the heart of how the University operates. In practice, it means working with schools and colleges, providing the opportunity for structured work experience and apprenticeships and adopting open employee recruitment practices. 

Former Government minister and MP the Rt Hon Justine Greening will be guest of honour at a virtual launch event on November 10.

The former Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women & Equalities will be outlining the role higher education (HE) plays in improving the life trajectories of people irrespective of their background.

University of Bradford Vice Chancellor Professor Shirley Congdon said: “This is a huge achievement and we’re honoured to have Justine Greening launching our Social Mobility Pledge. This is a point in time when we recognise our success so far and underline our enduring commitment to continue to work with others in partnership to bring about a stronger approach to social mobility.”

The Social Mobility Pledge showcases the role the University has played and is playing to enable people to realise their dreams and take advantage of opportunities, which resulted in the University being awarded University of the Year for Social Inclusion 2020 by The Times and Sunday Times. It is also a commitment to work in collaboration with partners, such as the local authority and health authorities, in the city region.

The University’s Strategic Plan 2020-25 sets out a commitment to put equality and inclusion at the heart of everything it does, with the ultimate goal of changing lives for the better. And its Access & Participation Plan shows how this will be achieved, for example by giving more people the opportunity to go to university and ensuring they do well and achieve good grades when they are there.

The launch event will include an address from University of Bradford Vice Chancellor Professor Shirley Congdon, the Rt Hon Justine Greening, Kersten England, Chief Executive of Bradford Council and a student.

Additional information

Founded by former UK Cabinet Minister, Rt Hon Justine Greening, and UK entrepreneur David Harrison, the Social Mobility Pledge calls on organisations to take steps to boost opportunity and social mobility by providing people from disadvantaged backgrounds quality careers advice and mentoring, offering structured work experience and apprenticeships and changing the way employers hire people, for example by taking a ‘name blind’ approach to applications.