International Women’s Day Event, Friday 6 March 2020

Professor Katherine Linehan, Chair of the Gender Equality Committee and Faculty Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion; and Professor Brendan Stone, Deputy Vice-President for Education, invite you to this year's International Women's Day event on Friday 6 March 2020.

Dear colleague

Sunday 8 March marks International Women’s Day (IWD), a global celebration of the achievements of women and a call to action for accelerating women’s equality. This year’s theme is #EachforEqual, but gender equality is not just the responsibility of women.

Individually and collectively we can all help create a gender equal world and workplace by broadening perceptions, challenging stereotypes and bias and redressing the balance for women. The University is committed to addressing and progressing gender equality and creating an inclusive place to work and study.

To reinforce the #EachforEqual theme, our event this year will be open to staff of any gender and will take a different approach. Two educational awareness sessions will focus on gender equality in relation to health and wellbeing, aiming to level the playing field for women experiencing the menopause and for all staff with caring responsibilities.

We recognise the impact that these life events can have on women, their wellbeing in the workplace and the need to create a supportive environment where all staff can thrive regardless of gender. Currently 1:8 of the UK workforce are women over 50, anticipated to be 1:6 by 2022. Here at Sheffield, around 46 per cent of female staff are between the age of 40 and 60.

For many, this stage of life can bring significant challenges in juggling emotional and physical symptoms of the menopause with the demands of caring responsibilities. In the UK, 1:8 adults are unpaid carers supporting elderly, disabled or seriously ill dependents. Women are disproportionately affected with more being ‘sandwich’ carers (caring for young children and parents at the same time) as well as facing caring challenges more than a decade earlier than men.

Our International Women’s Day event will launch some new areas of work to help ensure that all staff get the same opportunities to flourish regardless of age, time-of-life changes, gender and/or family circumstance. We hope to bring the conversation into the open and reduce bias but there will be no expectation or obligation to share personal circumstances or experiences. You are welcome to attend the whole event or just part of it. The sessions are relevant to staff with lived experience of – or an interest in – these areas, those with equality diversity & inclusion roles and anyone with line management responsibilities. Come along and find out more. Open to staff of any gender, places are allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

Event information and booking:

9.30 – 9.45am: Registration and refreshments
9.45 – 10am: Introduction and welcome by Professor Katherine Linehan and Professor Brendan Stone

Creating a menopause friendly workplace
10am - 12 noon Firth Hall

How do we talk about the menopause at work? Deborah Garlick is Founder and Managing Director of Henpicked: Menopause in the Workplace. Her mission is to support employers to develop the right menopause training, awareness and education, policies and practices to level the playing field for women experiencing the menopause. Deborah will talk about how we can normalise the ‘taboo’ of menopause by encouraging the conversation around it. We can then raise awareness and build confidence to support women to be successful in their roles regardless of the challenges the menopause may bring and to enjoy the right work life balance.

Join us for lunch: if you are attending one or both of the sessions, a buffet lunch will be provided with the opportunity to network.

Supporting our Carers
12.40 - 14.15pm Firth Hall

Our University recently became members of Employers for Carers, Carers UK’s business forum. This is in line with our commitment to provide support for staff who need to balance their working commitments and careers with caring responsibilities outside of work. The session will be led by Madeleine Starr MBE, Director of Business Development and Innovation at Carers UK who will be joined by Professor Sue Yeandle, professor of Sociology and Director of CIRCLE. Madeline will showcase the Employers for Carers digital platform and the resources that are now available to managers and staff. Professor Yeandle will share some insights from her research into Sustainable Care and the importance of the relationship between work and care.

Book your place

We hope to see as many of you as possible on 6 March and look forward to sharing and celebrating your successes. As in previous years, we will also be showcasing your achievements and commitment to progressing gender equality in the week running up to International Women’s Day. Look out for further communications about this. You can read more about our inclusion and gender equality work on the Inclusion at Sheffield web pages.

Many thanks

Professor Katherine Linehan, Chair of the Gender Equality Committee and Faculty Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
Professor Brendan Stone, Deputy Vice-President for Education

Women@TUOS staff network

Are you interested in getting involved in the women’s staff network? Expressions of interest are welcomed for the role of Chair or Steering Group Committee member. Given the size of the network, joint chairship could be an option. If you would like to help shape the future of the network and build on its success, please email

Other IWD events

Thursday 5 March 2020: Women in Technology: careers panel and networking session

The Careers Service will be hosting a careers panel and networking session specifically aimed at women studying STEM subjects and gain tips and advice on forging a successful career in technology.

Speakers include:

Melise Jones, a professional leader experienced in global sales, customer service and operations. She has been part of the technology business sector for over 30 years delivering customer-facing solutions and services. At least 15 of those years have been in senior leadership roles with internet technology pioneers like Bolt Beranek & Newman (BBN), award-winning UK Internet Service Provider Plusnet Plc and multi-national software company, WANdisco. After a 4-year tour of duty as a Cryptographic Operations Technician in the United States Navy, Melise spent 18 years on the Network Operations leadership team with pioneering internet company Bolt Beranek & Newman.

Nevelina Aleksandrova, a Senior Software Engineer (civil servant) working for the Ministry of Justice, specifically the Prison service, who will talk about her route into tech and the sorts of work that she gets involved in. She is also very interested in educational toys that introduce children to problem solving and the ideas behind coding.

Emma Marshall, Operations Director at Sheffield company 3Squared, who specialise in software solutions for the rail industry. Emma will talk about the many opportunities in tech that exist in smaller companies within the exciting Sheffield digital scene as well as recounting her experience of how you can turn a 9 months maternity cover into the role of Managing Director.

Lara Senhen, originally from Germany, Lara studied a MSc in International Business and graduated in 2017. She now works for FDM as a University Partnership Team Lead. She recruits graduates for different streams such as Software Development, Software Testing, Robotics Process Automation or Business Consultant but also works closely with Universities to help students increase their employability.

Book your space on Career Connect or just turn up

Friday 6 March 2020: Early Career Researcher’s networking lunch:

In honour of International Women's Day, the Early Career Researchers Women’s Network is hosting a networking lunch on Friday 6 March 12 noon – 2pm. Bring your lunch for cake, coffee and networking.

Book your place

Sunday 8 March 2020: SheFest 2020: In Conversation with Munroe Bergdorf at the Students' Union Auditorium:

SheFest is a not-for-profit organisation made up of local volunteers, championing women’s rights and gender equality through a range of inclusive events, activities, workshops, film screenings and more. The 10-day fringe festival in celebration of International Women's Day runs from 5 - 15 March 2020, expanding across the whole of South Yorkshire, with events in Sheffield, Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham.

On Sunday 8 March SheFest are proud to welcome Munroe Bergdorf to Sheffield for International Women's Day 2020. Hosted by BBC Radio Sheffield’s Sile Sibanda, Munroe will be discussing everything from gender, race and identity to navigating life and a career as a transwoman in the public eye.

Event details

View the full SheFest programme

Monday 9 March 2020: A Match Made in Heaven - a collection of 16 short stories by young British Muslim women writers

To coincide with International Women's Day, this event by Libraries Sheffield will be an evening of discussion and readings from the book. Editors include Professor Richard Phillips and Dr Nafhesa Ali, Department of Human Geography at the University of Sheffield

Book your place

Monday 9 March 2020: Margaret Savigear Lectures:

The Department of Animal and Plant Sciences will be hosting the Annual Margaret Savigear Lectures to coincide with International Women's Day.

The Savigear Lectures acknowledge the importance of role models to the next generation of scientists by explicitly increasing the visibility of women biologists and celebrates the importance of mentors.

Event details