The University of Stirling and the Students’ Union have scooped a top award for their strategy designed to prevent and tackle sexual violence and misconduct.
The high-profile drive – supported by an awareness-raising campaign entitled #IsThisOK? – was recognised at the prestigious Herald Higher Education Awards in Glasgow.
Launched in March, the Preventing and Tackling Sexual Violence and Misconduct Strategy aims to encourage a culture of respect and create a university community that does not tolerate - and feels comfortable to challenge and report – sexual violence and misconduct.
The team behind the project was presented with the Partnership Award – which celebrates collaboration that results in a transformative impact upon students – at a glitzy ceremony hosted by STV’s Jennifer Reoch at the Radisson Blu Hotel.
Jill Stevenson, Head of Student Support Services, said: "We are delighted to have won this award and received recognition for our strategy and the partnership that underpins it.
“The University and Students' Union, in collaboration with a range of external partners, is taking action to address sexual violence and create a better society not just for our students and staff but for everyone.
“The strategy and #IsThisOK? campaign provide a framework for a range of culture-changing activities, and we are very excited to progress these now in collaboration with our partners."
Matt Adie, Vice President Education of Stirling Students' Union, said: “We are delighted to have been jointly awarded the Partnership of the Year Award for the work we undertook on developing the new Preventing and Tackling Sexual Violence and Misconduct Strategy with the University of Stirling.
“This important piece of work signalled a step change in how we seek to ensure a culture of mutual respect on campus and within wider society.
“All in all, it was a successful night for Stirling and demonstrated just how much of a difference were making locally and nationally.”
The strategy was developed in collaboration with Rape Crisis Forth Valley, Police Scotland, Stirling Council, and Stirling and District Women’s Aid.
The University also received a commendation in the Campaign of the Year category for its Peter Mackay Archive Crowdfunding drive. The campaign secured financial support to make a historic archive - chronicling the Scottish soldier’s support of independence in southern Africa - digitally accessible for the first time.
The archive, donated to the University by the Mackay family in 2013, contains a detailed account of the life of the late activist who fought for black freedom in Rhodesia. The crowdfunding campaign has allowed the University to catalogue and digitise the vast collection.
Karl Magee, Head Archivist at the University, said: “We’re delighted to get this recognition for our crowdfunding campaign which has enabled us to digitise material from the Peter Mackay Archive, making it available to researchers around the world.”
The University was also shortlisted in the Student Support Team of the Year and Enhancing Student Learning award categories.