Posted: Thu 3rd Mar 2016

Inspiring Swansea University Director shortlisted for ‘Fair Play’ award /
This article is old - Published: Thursday, Mar 3rd, 2016

Sian Cushion, Associate Director of Human Resources, Swansea University has been shortlisted as a finalist in her category – Outstanding Contribution Award in the Chwarae Teg Womenspire Awards. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The Womanspire Awards celebrate the amazing achievements being made by women across Wales. They include a wide range of categories* to ensure that the winners will be reflective of the amazing achievements being made by women from all walks of life. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Sian Cushion’s nomination and shortlisting recognises her personal efforts to help women achieve and prosper both in a personal capacity and in changing the way that the University functions. With female staff representing 55% of the workforce (1,700 in total) but underrepresented in senior positions, Sian has created many opportunities for women at the University and readily supports and promotes gender activities across both campuses. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

By embedding gender equality at the heart of transformation Sian continually challenges the way that historically systems have operated. She has: ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

successfully negotiated a set of Key Performance Indicators for Heads of College and Directors including the need for an improvement in the gender balance of their leadership teams – a key issue holding women back both in the University and across Wales.
actively engaged views from the female academic community to shape a new promotions strategy and process which has resulted in changes like specific workshop sessions for women on the new process and gender equality featuring in promotions training for line managers. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Sian’s actions have resulted in increased completion rates of annual reviews thereby ensuring all women across the University have the opportunity to discuss their career aspirations with their line managers and increased confidence of women in applying for promotion. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

These significant cultural changes have been recognised by the Times Higher Education with the Swansea University winning both the Leadership and Management Award and the Outstanding Human Resources Team Award. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Speaking about her shortlisting Sian said: “ As a working mother I know, understand and live the emotional tug of war that is the daily balance between work and family life. It is hard sometimes to instil confidence in women to negotiate a personal work pattern so that women in senior positions can choose to work-part time and still excel in business. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“ I am a passionate believer that women are given an equal opportunity, they should be highly visible, and leading on visible outcomes. By personally being the face that undertakes to take the transformation agenda forward I hope to carve out and tread a path that others can follow and help women to be successful and achieve their aspirations.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Chwarae Teg CEO Joy Kent said: “ These awards are not for those women who have reached the top of their sector or career but for those who traditionally have gone unnoticed, younger women coming through, women from different backgrounds and those who are doing great things in their communities or in public life. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“We want Womenspire to celebrate all of these achievements as well as the women, men and organisations that are committed to creating more opportunities and making the most of women’s talent. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“We hope the awards will become the annual major showcase of the contribution of women to all spheres of Welsh life.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

For more information about Chwarae Teg and the Womenspire Awards go to ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The Womenspire Awards categories* are: ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Individual Awards ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

  • Pioneer Award
  • Personal Achiever
  • Rural Communities
  • Woman in the Media
  • Woman in Enterprise
  • Woman in Sport
  • Outstanding Contribution

Employers ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

  • Employer of the Year – Public Sector
  • Employer of the Year – Private Sector
  • Employer of the Year – Third Sector

Influencers ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

  • Woman in Education (FE/HE/Schools)
  • Woman in Public Life

As part of our International Women’s Day 2016 celebrations (8th March) Swansea University will, during March, be showcasing a range of successful and inspiring women that work, study and support Swansea University, both past and present. To find out more go to ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

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