The nod comes from Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE), a national initiative to improve diversity in the areas of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM) in the higher education and research sector.
Vice-Chancellor Professor Geraldine Mackenzie
said it was an important acknowledgement of USQ’s ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion.
“Initiatives such as this note the vital role of education in increasing the number of women in STEMM fields across the country,” Professor Mackenzie said.
“We are proud to receive the Athena SWAN Institutional Bronze Award and its recognition of our work so far to set up strong foundations for change.”
The award process is a multi-year endeavour in which USQ collected and analysed data to identify barriers to women participating in STEMM careers, and developed a comprehensive Action Plan in response to data collected.
“The University started this process in 2017, affirming our commitment to develop strategies to advance the careers of women, including First Nations women, trans and gender diverse individuals, not only in STEMM disciplines, but across the university,” Professor Mackenzie said.
“The Action Plan outlines key areas for continued focus: leadership, recruitment, career development, flexible working, and organisational culture.
“We’re already taking action - committing to dedicated positions, initiatives and systems to deliver the four-year plan.”
Professor Mackenzie said the university would continue to champion gender equity as a priority.
“As a female leader with 30 years’ experience in the tertiary education sector, I have personal experience of the challenges that women face in achieving equity,” she said.
“As Vice‐Chancellor, I commit USQ to the SAGE Action Plan to direct our work towards ensuring that all of the systems, strategies, policies and practices of the organisation fully support equity, diversity and inclusion.”
USQ's commitment to improving gender equity across the organisation has been recognised by an Athena SWAN Institutional Bronze Award.