NEON Summer Symposium 2016

Access Academy Training

  • Date

      09/06/2016 - 10/06/2016

  • Location/Venue

      University of Leicester

  • Time

      10:30 am - 1:30 pm

College Court- 20913-006

NEON are proud to announce details of our 2016 Summer Symposium which will take place on the 9th and 10th of June at the University of Leicester.

‘Rethinking Widening Access: How do we improve student outcomes across the lifecycle?

We believe that 2016 will be a crucial year for widening access to higher education. It is clear that we are seeing major shifts in the focus in our field toward student outcomes alongside changes in funding that will shape what we can do. This year’s symposium will concentrate on how we as a community can shape this new and emerging agenda.

As well as having the opportunity to network with other colleagues, share practice and participate in a range of workshops, we will have an impressive line-up of keynote speakers.

Confirmed Speakers

  • Professor Roberta Blackman-Woods (MP) – Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group Universities;
  • Sarah Howls – Head of Student Opportunity, HEFCE;
  • Professor Stephanie Marshall – Chief Executive Officer at the Higher Education Academy and Professor of Higher Education at the University of Manchester;
  • Paul Rasch – Team Leader Higher Education Access, Quality and Governance Unit, Department of Business, Innovation and Skills;
  • Megan Dunn – President, National Union of Students;
  • Professor Mark Peel – Provost, University of Leicester;
  • Professor Emma Smith – Professor of Education, University of Leicester.

The event will concentrate on identifying where progress is being made and where challenges exist in advancing widening access to HE work across the student lifecycle.


  • Making Networks of Collaborative Outreach sustainable
  • Innovation in pre-entry widening access work from HEIs and the voluntary sector
  • Connecting outreach, retention/success and employability work across HEIs
  • The Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) and its implication for widening access work
  • Proving the impact of access to higher education activities. With input from Professor Jacqueline Stevenson – Head of Research, Sheffield Institute of Education
  • Improving access and success for disabled people
  • Improving employment and post-graduate study outcomes for learners from widening access backgrounds
  • How does the cost of higher education shape student decision making? With input from Dr Graeme Atherton Director of NEON and Head of AccessHE
  • Improving employment outcomes for learners from widening access backgrounds. With input from Paul GantHead of Careers and Employability, University of Liverpool.
  • Improving postgraduate study outcomes for learners from widening access backgrounds. With input from Dr. Paul Wakeling – Senior Lecturer, Department of Education, University of York.

With further speakers yet to be announced this year’s Symposium will be a key event for widening access practitioners.

Click here to view the programme for the 2016 NEON Summer Symposium.

This promises to be the key event in the widening access calendar for the NEON community in 2016.

The NEON Summer Symposium – the event for widening access professionals you can’t afford to miss

We are currently operating a waiting list for the NEON Summer Symposium. Please fill out the waiting list form and we will notify you if a place becomes available. Bookings will be allocated on a first-come first-serve basis. Thank you for your patience.