New BME programme launched in attempt to bridge attainment gap


By Olivia Beatson, Online News Editor

The Be More Empowered (BME) for Success Programme has been launched to support BME students, after an SU survey found a gap in both attainment and a sense of belonging at University.

The Be More Empowered For Success programme, which is aiming to positively enhance the experiences of BME students whilst at university as well as their success academically and mentally, was launched earlier this month.

The news comes following a recent report undertaken by the SU, which revealed an imbalance in attainment between BME student and their pears. The report also outlined the experiences of BME students while living at the university, many of whom spoke of a lack of community and belonging.

University of Bristol’s Student Inclusion Officer Robiu Salisu founded the programme.

Speaking on his intentions with the creation of the project, he said: ‘My main aim is to create a smooth transition for BME students moving to Bristol from home life to student life.

'Helping them find pentecostal churches, mosques and where they can buy traditional food from their culture.’

Salisu also emphasised the importance of understanding what he called a ‘belonging gap’ stating: ‘A Students' Union survey found that there was approximately a 10 per cent difference between the feeling of belonging to the university between BME students and white students.

‘That shows that there isn't just an attainment gap in terms of coming out with a 2:1 or a 1st to their white counterparts, there's also a sense of belonging gap.’

In February, Epigram reported that black students were also 20 per cent less likely to receive an offer from Bristol than their white counterparts.

Featured Image: Giulia Spadafora / Soul Media

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