Being a BAME Ambassador for the past year has been a great opportunity that I have been glad to be a part of. Right from the beginning, the BAME Ambassador scheme has provided a safe environment for students from a variety of different ethnic backgrounds that face similar issues and are motivated to work together for change. Joining the scheme at first seemed daunting (especially as it was a brand-new programme), but I can certainly guarantee that the scheme allowed me to feel comfortable and express myself and my ideas with ease. This was because we were reminded that we as individuals direct change. When joining, you were given the choice of what you wanted to be involved in whether that would be organising, running or simply participating in projects or campaigns.
Amongst the options of sitting on committees, campaigning and being involved in reading lists, I decided that sitting on committee meetings would be the best choice for me. I agreed to represent BAME students in the Music, Humanities and Media school and received invitations for School Boards and School Teaching and Learning Committee meetings. I received a lot of guidance and training prior to these meetings, this helped me to gain further confidence in public speaking and hone these skills whilst in a safe environment. However, as I then went to study abroad, I didn’t manage to contribute to the scheme as hands-on as I had hoped to, but the online platform (Basecamp) enabled me to still be updated on events and still interact with other members.
Whilst I was away, the BAME scheme gained 50+ members and set up charity stalls and campaigns to raise awareness regarding the hijab. Now I have returned, I intend on returning to assist in the committee meetings and more public speaking events, whilst also helping to bring the members of the BAME scheme closer together through social events. Black History Month is also coming up, and I am glad to be a part of the organisation for that, whilst also helping with the ‘BroadenMyBookshelf’ scheme.
I would encourage all other students from a BAME background to join the scheme this year as it is such an enthusiastic environment filled with a variety of positive and friendly people. The scheme is beneficial and opening doors for the future, it is a great plus for your CV and you don't have to commit to every event posted, just ones that suit you and where you feel you can attend; the choice is yours.
If you identify as a BAME Student then apply to become a BAME Ambassador here.