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A student in a red dress with a member of staff wearing black, receiving the Reach Society Award

We are pleased to announce that the University has been presented with the Reach Society’s Corporate Champion award for ‘Contribution as an Outstanding Collaboration Partner’.

The award recognises our Space to Explore Potential (STEP) programme, that ran for a third time in 2022. STEP offers a dedicated space for young Black-heritage students, to explore not only their own potential but all that Durham has to offer as a potential university destination. STEP welcomes applications from Year 12 Black-heritage students, who attend UK State Schools. 

Many students who participate in the STEP programme go on to study at Durham, with four from the pilot cohort enrolling in October 2021, and 15 in October 2022. In 2022, 83 students successfully completed the programme and because of this will receive a guaranteed contextual offer from the University for 2023 entry.

The award is presented by the Reach Society, which aims to encourage and recognise self development in young people, with particular emphasis on Black boys and young Black men. The ‘Corporate Champion’ award is given for extraordinary contributions and long service to Reach Society and is the highest award available to corporate partners.

We also continue to support Reach Society by attending a variety of inspirational events for young Black people, hosted by the Society.

Angelina Johnson, Law student at Durham and former STEP participant said:

“I felt I could trust Durham’s credentials as a university that values diversity and seeks to be more diverse. I will always be grateful for the opportunities provided by STEP because it really helped shape my dream into reality.   That’s why I recommend STEP, especially to students who may or may not be sure about university.”

The Reach Society award recognises the university’s commitment to improving access and participation in Higher Education for students from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences.

Applications for STEP 2023 will open in February 2023 for current Year 12 students. Find out if you are eligible and register your interest for more information. 

Find out more

Find out more about STEP: Space to Explore Potential (STEP) - Durham University

Learn more about Reach Society

Read about Eva’s experience on the STEP programme

Find out more about Fair Access and Widening Participation at Durham University

Image Caption: Angelina Johnson, Law student at Durham and former STEP student (Left) and Natalie Keogh, from Access and Engagement (Right) collected the Corporate Champion award on the University’s behalf.