Selwyn has announced the creation of a new role of Schools Liaison Officer based in the north of England. Joe Stanley will take on this position from his base in Yorkshire with the aim of showing school students across the north that Cambridge is open to everyone with the right talent, irrespective of their background.
The college wants to break down some of the myths about Cambridge, and it has already demonstrated the breadth of its recruitment with a record 81% of prospective home students this autumn coming from state schools. This new post represents a major boost to the college’s existing outreach work, especially in West Yorkshire; and the northern post will work in association with an existing role based in Cambridge.
Joe Stanley (pictured) said: “I was born and brought up in Rotherham, I attended my local state comprehensive, and I was the first in my family to go to university so I know first-hand the barriers students from similar backgrounds as myself face when considering Higher Education. In the role of Selwyn’s Northern Schools Liaison Officer I want to act as a role model to show to talented young people that Cambridge is the right university for them.”
The Master of Selwyn, Roger Mosey, adds: “Selwyn and Cambridge have transformed their student body in recent years, with a massive increase in diversity and a rise in the number of students coming from tougher economic backgrounds. An important part of our commitment is seeking to attract students from all across the United Kingdom, and – as someone from Yorkshire myself – we are very keen to boost our efforts to recruit more applicants from the north of England, where we feel there is an under-representation amongst our student body.”
Dr Mike Sewell, Senior Tutor at Selwyn, explains: “West Yorkshire is already one of our link areas where we help lead on behalf of the Cambridge Colleges, but the pressures of the pandemic – including the difficulty of arranging travel to Cambridge – have meant that our north of England contingent has remained at best static. We want to change this. It’s a major investment for us to have a new post specifically dedicated to Selwyn and Cambridge outreach in the north, which we believe is justified. Joe will continue to live and work in the region, and he is precisely the sort of person who will help demystify Cambridge and Selwyn, challenging the stereotype that ‘Cambridge isn’t for me’. Selwyn is determined to remain in the vanguard of colleges which are open to everyone with the right talent, and this appointment is a sign of the seriousness of our commitment.”