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Support for our bursary programme

An important part of our work over the last few years has been to launch a bursary programme for under-represented students, specifically from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds, as part of the Trust’s commitment to becoming a more inclusive education provider. This highly successful programme is entering into its third year, with a total of 26 bursaries being awarded to date across a variety of courses.

The EDI team works in partnership with the Tavistock and Portman Charity to deliver the bursary programme. A generous bequest by Julie Roach provided the initial funds, further enhanced by the charity securing support over the pandemic from NHS Charities Together to provide mentoring for students most adversely affected by Covid. The evolving bursary programme has now provided substantial funding for three cohort years with Louise Lyon, chair of the charity commenting: “As a result of bequests from previous generations of service users and practitioners – whose lives and own practice have been enriched by training at the Trust – the charity is delighted to help widen access to today’s students.”  Other bursary programmes run as a result of support from the Stuart Hall Foundation and the Nick and Roberta Perren Charitable Trust.

An essential part of the programme has been to provide students with mentoring for the duration of the programme of study. This was based on the recognition of the value of mentoring to support students who, we know from various sources, including our student survey, can easily feel marginalised, excluded or out of place; to help them as they settle in and navigate studying at the Trust. We have established a team of mentors with experience of our courses.

Feedback from student participants:

‘Everyone is so willing to help you achieve your best on this course. Every single lecturer that I encountered taught the course with enthusiasm. Be prepared to participate, the more you participate, the more you will get out of it and learn. Don’t be afraid of not knowing things, as this makes you closer as a group.’

‘My mentee experience has been highly valuable.  My mentor has been a patient, active listener who has provided me with protected 1: 1 time, they have been enthusiastic and willing to answer questions, provide feedback, and helped me find solutions on my own.’

‘The bursary was helpful in easing the financial cost of the training’

‘It is great to have an ally in the form of a mentor who makes time to offer support and guidance’.

‘Thank you for the great support, I believe the mentor was a great addition to the study experience, I was able to discuss my personal experiences and growth in a very enriching way.‘

‘Having a mentor is a great opportunity to have someone to speak to and think about the course, how I approach some of the difficulties within it. Knowing ‘I’m not going mad’ and that experiential learning is a very different approach to learning. I was mindful not to choose some of the other brilliant mentors as wanted to be challenged around some different ideas.  I am truly grateful for the opportunity.’

Want to find out more about the Tavistock and Portman Charity?

The Tavistock and Portman Charity was created in 2021 following the merger of the Tavistock Clinic Foundation and the Tavistock and Portman Charitable Fund as part of the planned centenary celebrations, with the new charity’s focus in its first year on supporting the Trust through the pandemic.  More recently, it champions research and clinical innovation at the Trust with a particular commitment to widen access to its world-class training.

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