Join us as a Higher Education institution
Why do universities join?
Many universities and university departments choose to become members of Citizens UK to build a better, fairer society.
Community Organising allows academics, professional services staff and students to build positive working relationships between communities, organisations, elected power-holders and businesses, making sure everyone is heard and no one is left out.
By joining as a member you will not only demonstrate a wider commitment to social justice but also have further opportunities to connect with other members and win change.
Beyond that, it is an opportunity to demonstrate that you as a University or University department are committed to social justice and invested in your people and your community.
Together, we have a proven track record of supporting Universities to develop leaders, build relationships, and win change on the things that members and the wider community care about most..
Which universities do we work with?
We already work with universities nationwide to support student leaders' development, build universities' relationships with local organisations, and embed community organising and civic engagement into the curriculum.
See below for a list of our current university members and some case studies of our work together.
Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge and Chelmsford
University of the Arts, London (UAL)
University of Birmingham
- Civic engagement: Parent Power Cardiff launched to boost university access for local communities
- Civic engagement: Human Resource Management masters students introduce the Community Job Compact
University of East London (UEL)
University of Leicester
- Staff and student engagement: CARE (Collective Anti-Racist Efforts) initiative
Leeds Trinity University
King's College London
- Civic engagement: King's leads universities' response to hosting Ukrainian refugee students and academics
- Civic engagement: A voice for change: partnership of local communities to explore Latinx representation in higher education
University of Manchester
- Staff and student engagement: why Newcastle University is a founding member of Tyne & Wear Citizens
University of Nottingham
Nottingham Trent University
- Civic engagement: what do social science staff and students do with Nottingham Citizens?
Queen Mary, University of London
- Staff and student engagement: civil society internship for politics and international relations students
University of Sussex
We help universities develop their leaders and strengthen their institution
Staff and student training in London
At King’s College London, Organisers ran a "service-leaders programme" training 30 academics, professional service staff and students to build relationships and create change. Trainees have used the skills to strengthen internal teams, to build relationships with the local Latin American community (Empoderando Familias), set up student societies and run campaigns on welcoming refugees, switching energy companies, and the digital divide.
Conversations about race uses the House Meetings tool to have tough and honest discussions that explore the experience of race at the institution and develop ways to improve the experience of students and staff of colour.
We help universities win change
The real Living Wage in Cardiff
Cardiff University Business School has worked with Citizens Cymru Wales to win pay rises for thousands of low-paid workers in Wales. Our Community Organisers have run training seminars with students to help them connect to local issues facing low paid workers in and around the university campus, helping them learn principles of Organising and connect them to their university study.
Youth Mental Health in Birmingham
Newman University, Birmingham has worked with Citizens UK to end the gap in access to specialist mental health treatment for 16 to 17 year olds (impacting approximately 4,000 young people in Birmingham). They remain a long standing member of our Citizens UK Birmingham chapter and every year students attend Community Organising training as part of their development in university life.
WonkHE: Universities supporting community organising
Can a university be more than a building a community walks past? Citizens UK's James Asfa outlines the role universities can play in community organising
WonkHE: Empowering parents on education
Anne-Marie Canning describes how community organising, and her own mother, inspired her to empower parents
WonkHE: From accredited employer to Living Wage champion
The University of East London is proud to pay the Living Wage. Emmanuel Gotora and Tim Hall share the story of how support for community organising brought fair pay to staff at other local employers