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Aurora Women's Leadership Development Programme 2019-20

Queen Mary is proud of its ongoing relationship with Advanced HE (formerly the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education), and is again participating in the Aurora Programme for 2019/2020.

As a participating institution, QMUL also requires Aurora role models to be in place. If you are interested in supporting the programme as a role model (where you will be part of the team facilitating some of the development days) we would also love to hear from you.

What is Aurora?

The Aurora Programme is a unique partnership bringing together leadership experts and higher education institutions to take positive action to address the under-representation of women in leadership positions in the sector. It aims to enable women in academic and professional staff roles to think of themselves as future leaders; to influence their institutions and to develop leadership skills.

As part of our core values, QMUL believes in supporting our female staff, both academic and professional services, to achieve their best potential and become future leaders at the university.

Aurora 2019/2020 dates

Location Identity, Impact and Voice Power and Politics Action Learning Set 1 Core Leadership Skills Adaptive Leadership Skills Action Learning Set 2
London 1 Wednesday 23 October 2019 Wednesday 20 November 2019 Wednesday 11 December 2019 Wednesday 15 January 2020 Wednesday 19 February 2020 Wednesday 18 March 2020
London 2 Tuesday 25 February 2020 Tuesday 24 March 2020 Tuesday 21 April 2020 Tuesday 12 May 2020 Tuesday 23 June 2020 Tuesday 14 July 2020

Aurora Leadership programme 2019/2020 – Developing women leaders at QMUL

QMUL will be participating in the 2019/2020 intakes of the Aurora Leadership Programme, beginning in October 2019.

Participation in the programme will involve attending a series of development days and action learning sets, as well as participating in projects or assignments at QMUL which will build their leadership skills.

Who can apply?

Aurora is for women up to and including senior lecturer level or the professional services equivalent working in a university, college or related organisation who would like to develop and explore issues relating to leadership roles and responsibilities.

Participants should have the endorsement of their institution (either their Aurora Champion, Human Resource department or line manager) and be committed to developing and enhancing their career.

Participants will be asked to:

  • attend each of the four development days, and the two action learning set days organised by participants in their assigned groups;
  • undertake self-directed learning throughout Aurora, aligned with developing interests and where time allows;
  • commit to working with a mentor who is provided by their institution;
    be prepared to access leadership opportunities and champion for change.

Applications for the 2019/20 programme is now closed.

Download a presentation about the programme:

Aurora Briefing Slides 2019/2020 [PPT 479KB]

Aurora Leadership Programme - Connected

For further information, please email:

Carol Malcolm at: or David Wallace at:

Briefing sessions

A series of briefing workshops for potential participants, mentors and role models was held in July. There are no further briefing sessions scheduled.

What other ways can staff get involved?


Aurora participants are required to have a mentor to support and guide them throughout and after the end of the formal learning process. Usually these mentors will have been identified by the HEI’s Aurora Champion, the central HR or staff development department and may be part of an existing mentoring scheme. Mentors may be male or female and be well-established and knowledgeable members of the institution who will usually be more senior than the Aurora participant.

Mentors will:

  • Be considered successful in their careers;
  • Be knowledgeable and experienced in their organisation and understand its culture;
  • Have sufficient time available to work with the mentee;
  • Have the endorsement of their Aurora champion;
  • Have sufficient general higher education experience to be able to offer advice and support;
  • Be a good listener;
  • Have a genuine interest in helping women to develop their careers and particularly support his/her mentee;
  • Have a supportive or ‘coaching style’ of communication.


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