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SAFS Achieves First Silver Athena Swan Award in UCD

SAFS Achieves First Silver Athena Swan Award in UCD

Silver Medal awarded to SAFS by Athena

The University College Dublin’s School of Agriculture and Food Science is the first school to achieve a Silver Athena Swan Award in UCD. The school achieved this award for demonstrating impact and leadership on gender equality amongst faculty, staff, and students.

The Athena SWAN charter is a framework that is used across the globe to support and transform gender equality in higher education and research.

“I am delighted to congratulate the School of Agriculture and Food Science, the first School to achieve a silver Athena Swan award in UCD. The School is a leader in UCD demonstrating the positive change and impact of equitable and inclusive practices that can be achieved through implementation of their gender equality action plan,” said Professor Colin Scott, Vice President for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and Co-chair of Gender Equality Action Group, UCD.

To receive accreditation at silver level, a school must implement a four-year gender equality action plan and demonstrate impact through a rigorous data driven 18-month audit of gender equality practices.

Professor Emma Sokell, Co-chair of UCD Gender Equality Action Group said: “Diversity is one of the core values in UCD’s strategy, and one of our strategic objectives is the attraction, development, and retention of an excellent and diverse cohort of students, faculty, and staff. The Athena SWAN process is central to our ability to deliver on this objective and deliver on UCD’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy”

The School's achievements include:

  • Greater EDI awareness across the School and high uptake of EDI training provided by UCD
  • A Mentorship programme to support career development and application for academic promotion.
  • Seven women achieved academic promotion, three of whom were promoted to professor.
  • Female graduates from the School’s undergraduate programmes increased from 42% in 2018/19 to 51% in 2020/21
  • Introduction of gender balanced speaker list for Annual School Seminar Series
  • Campaigns to increase visibility of women in Agriculture and Food Science across social media, school promotional material, events, and webinars.
  • Held a Women’s Writing Retreat

“The Athena SWAN Silver Award is a wonderful validation of the commitment of the Leadership within our school to promoting gender equality and inclusivity. It also recognizes the strong ethos across the School’s Staff and Student Body to support each other and the National and International Agricultural Community” said Professor Trudee Fair, Athena Swan Chair, UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science.

Professor Frank Monahan, Head of UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science said: “We are delighted to achieve an Athena Swan Silver Award. It has been a real privilege to witness the positive impact the School’s engagement with Athena Swan has had among our School community and, with our Silver gender equality action plan, we look forward to building further on the achievements of our Bronze award.”

A redacted version of the School of Agriculture and Food Science Athena Swan Silver Application is available here:

SAFS Athena Swan Silver Application (Redacted)

UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science

Agriculture and Food Science Centre, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 7205 | Location Map(opens in a new window)