Faculty of Medical Sciences

What we do

Awards and Accreditation

We are proud to hold a Faculty Silver Athena SWAN Award

Our Faculty Silver Athena SWAN award recognises our commitment to advancing gender equality in the Faculty and our achievements in supporting the career aspirations and progression of our staff and students.

We also support the University’s work towards accreditation through Stonewall, the Business Disability Forum, and the Race Equality Charter.

right aligned AS silver

Local Good Practice

Examples of good practice from around the Faculty

Institute of Neuroscience 

The Institute has been particularly active in leading examples of good practice in EDI. They employ a full time Events, Engagement and Outreach Co-ordinator and invest in Outreach training for PGRs through a successful IoN Ambassador programme. The Institute actively engages with schools; examples including careers events, science projects and interactive learning days. Later this year we will be working with Discovery Museum on a series of events around women in science. The Director of IoN is pro-active in reminding all research committee members that nominations for women are particularly encouraged and research committees are required to have at least one woman. A Working Group reviews the wording of job adverts, job descriptions and further particulars. 

The Institute held themed coffee mornings open to all staff to look at issues such as parenting and flexible working. These sessions are used to disseminate information, find out what issues staff had and engage people into the Athena SWAN process. 

Institute of Health & Society

All non-allocated funds in the institute are used to finance an internal redeployment policy. This increases job security for research staff and allows ongoing investment in junior colleagues through funds to support training and attendance at national and international conferences.

Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences

The Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences have extended their resources to provide developmental training for not only female staff but also female PhD students. This acknowledges the importance of realising the need to support women in STEM from the earliest possible point of their career progression. There is also a women’s promotions champion who considers all female academic staff as to their readiness for promotion and supports the application process for them.

Institute of Genetic Medicine

An EDI project in the Institute of Genetic Medicine identified lower numbers of female applicants and lower success rates for women applying for external fellowships, compared with men. Recognising that this remains a major issue within the Institute, they have begun to address this by finding alternative research funding for women who had unsuccessful fellowship applications. This has proved very successful, providing funding for these trainees to gain their PhD and build their publications.

Cross-Faculty Forums

Our Faculty collaborates and works widely with the other two Faculties of Science, Agriculture and Engineering (SAgE) and Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS). We hold two cross-faculty forums each year, bringing together leads in equality and inclusion from across the University to share good practice and develop joint initiatives. Recent themes for our forums have been intersectionality and building the business case for equality and diversity in higher education. Details of forthcoming meetings will be found on our events page.

Parenting and Childcare Working Group

Our EDI Team is currently leading a cross-faculty review of parenting and childcare support for staff and students across the University. The aim of the review is to identify challenges and barriers for parents working and studying at the University, and ways in which we can improve our support. 






Collaborations and Outreach

We work at local and national levels to be a beacon for EDI

Soap Box Science

The Faculty organizes Newcastle’s Soap Box Science event, annually promoting the innovative research of our female scientists across a range of scientific disciplines to the public. 

Ambassador Programme

The Institute of Neuroscience invests in Outreach training for PGRs through a successful IoN Ambassador programme.

School engagement

The Institute of Neuroscience actively engages with schools running careers events, science projects and interactive learning days.  A full-time Events, Engagement and Outreach Co-ordinator is employed to support this activity.


We regularly work with local museums to promote women in science.  Trailblazers, hosted by the Discovery Museum celebrated remarkable women in science.

Local Charities

We also support the work of local charities. For example, for International Women's Day (IWD) 2017, we hosted the Angelou Centre and the Riverside project to talk to staff and students about their work and helped organize collection boxes for sanitary products for local refugees and food banks. 

Other Universities

Members of our EDI Team also collaborate and exchange good practice with a range of other universities across the sector. For example, we have run workshops at the Equality Challenge Unit (ECU) Annual Conference and have shared our parenting survey questionnaire to support change in other institutions

Follow our blog to see more information about what we do.

Soapbox Science Newcastle 2017

Get Involved

There are lots of ways in which staff and students can get involved.

  • Follow us @FMSDiversityNCL
  • Highlight areas or issues that you think we need to work on. Just email us. 
  • Come to one of our events. Or maybe you have an idea for one?
  • Read or write for our blog. We’re always looking for guest writers!
  • Join the local EDI team in your School, Institute or Unit.
  • Become a student volunteer or intern. Apply via Newcastle Work Experience.
  • Involve us in your EDI research.

We’re always keen to hear your thoughts and ideas about how we can be more inclusive and improve our working practices and culture, so do get in touch via FMS.Diversity@ncl.ac.uk.