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Social Mobility Advisory Group

About the group

A Social Mobility Advisory Group was established to provide advice to the government and support for universities to improve access and long-term success for underrepresented groups in higher education.

The group looked at the entire student journey, from aspirations at school, to the process of applying to university, whether or not they complete their degree and the grades they get, through to career progression once they graduate. The group also considered the options available for people later in life, such as for those who need to develop their skills as their job changes or those who were unable to attend university when they were younger.

The group's final report, Working in partnership: enabling social mobility in higher education, was given to the Minister for Universities and Science Jo Johnson MP and published in October 2016. Recommendations from the report were also shared with the Secretary of State for Education, Justine Greening MP.

Reference groups

The advisory group was supported in its work by two reference groups, an Academic Reference Group and a Practitioners' Reference Group.

Membership of the Social Mobility Advisory Group includes:

  • Nicola Dandridge (advisory group chair), Chief Executive, Universities UK
  • Shirley Atkinson, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, University of Sunderland
  • Gaenor Bagley, Head of Corporate Purpose, PwC
  • Zamila Bunglawala, Deputy Director, Labour Market, Cabinet Office​
  • Anne-Marie Canning, Director of Widening Participation (Student Lifecycle), King's College London
  • Professor Joy Carter, Vice-Chancellor, University of Winchester
  • Caroline Bicknell, Deputy Director of Higher Education, Department for Education 
  • Professor Les Ebdon, Director, Office for Fair Access
  • Allan Foulds, former President of The Association of School and College Leaders   
  • Nicholas Glossop, Head of Inclusion and Learning Support, BPP University
  • Gerry Godley, Principal and Managing Director, Leeds College of Music
  • Peter Horrocks, Vice-Chancellor, The Open University
  • Omar Khan, Director, The Runnymede Trust
  • Professor Geoff Layer, Vice-Chancellor, University of Wolverhampton
  • Gary Loke, Head of Policy, Equality Challenge Unit
  • Steve McArdle, Chair of Post-16 and Higher Education, Association of School and College Leaders and Assistant Head (Post-​16), Durham Johnson School 
  • Nona McDuff, Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Kingston University and Chair of the Higher Education Race Action Group
  • Chris Millward, Director (Policy), Higher Education Funding Council for England
  • Raphael Raphael Mokades, founder and Managing Director, Rare Recruitment
  • Mike Nicholson, Chair of the Higher Education Liaison Officers Association, and Director of Student Recruitment and Admissions, University of Bath
  • Professor Sir Steve Smith, Chair of UCAS, and Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, University of Exeter
  • Professor John Storan, Director of Continuum, Centre for Widening Participation Policy Studies, University of East London
  • Professor Mary Stuart, Vice-Chancellor, University of Lincoln
  • Sorana Vieru, Vice-President, (Higher Education), National Union of Students
  • Steve McArdle, Chair of Post-16 and Higher Education, Association of School and College Leaders and Assistant Head (Post 16), Durham Johnson School 
  • John Widdowson, Principal of New College Durham

For more information email socialmobility@universitiesuk.ac.uk

The team

Emily Darian

Emily Darian

Policy Researcher
Universities UK

William Hammonds

William Hammonds

Programme Manager
Universities UK

Eleanor Jubb

Eleanor Jubb

Policy Analyst
Universities UK

Fiona Waye

Fiona Waye

Senior Policy Lead - Inclusion, Equality and Diversity
Universities UK


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