From education to employment

It’s time to celebrate the stories behind the rainbow with the Queer Student Awards

Queer Student Awards

A new annual awards celebration, taking place virtually on Thursday 1st July 2021, will recognise the talented students in the U.K. identifying as LGBTQ+ and who are proudly leading in their lives, and the communities around them.

The Queer Student Awards come at a time when our most vulnerable young people are at risk of being left behind. The awards are an opportunity for employers, universities, schools and colleges to showcase the work they are doing to create inclusive spaces for young LGBTQ+ people, and to celebrate the achievements of apprentices, graduates, allies and role models supporting them in their transition into the workplace.

“There is now a considerable amount of research that shares frustrations from our young people about the tokenism that they see for one month each year, when the six-strip Pride rainbow flag – a symbol of queer pride and progress – is used to ‘pink-wash’ corporate logos as part of recruitment campaigns. Whilst this does continue to raise awareness and increase visibility of the LGBTQ+ community, young people expect and welcome more from brands today. The Queer Student Awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise the great work already being done to support young LGBTQ+ people and to celebrate the stories that lie behind the rainbow as a first step towards annual representation and engagement with them.” Steve Keith, Founder of the QSAs.

The awards aim to positively highlight the adversities that young LGBTQ+ people experience every day, especially when it comes to navigating their career options amidst concerns as to whether their sexuality might act as a barrier to their future success. Entries will be judged by a panel of student recruitment and youth experts, queer influencers and young people from schools, colleges and universities across the U.K. Confirmed sponsors include ICAEW, University of West London and Enterprise Rent-A-Car. A donation from the profits of the event will be made to LGBT+ charity partner, Diversity Role Models.

“Many LGBT+ students face challenges during their time in education, may it be from ridicule and bullying for who they are or even from within as they come to terms with their own ‘different’ identities during an already difficult time for all young people finding their way in the world. Diversity Role Models is proud to be the charity partner of the inaugural Queer Student Awards, which celebrate LGBT+ students who have overcome every hurdle life has thrown them so far and thrive as an ambitious role model for young people, sometimes against all the odds.” – Dan Beeson, Relationship Manager, Diversity Role Models.

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