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Aurora Leadership Development Programme for Women

24 Nov 2022

Open call for applications – deadline midnight on Monday, 28 November

We are again looking for nominations for the national Aurora Leadership Development Programme for staff who identify as women (Advance HE). Since its launch in 2013, we have supported 91 talented women from across the University through the programme.

This year we are inviting applications for our maximum institutional allocation of 16 places. We welcome applications from women from all staff groups (academic and PS) and from all functions and Faculties. The Aurora programme is designed to support women into leadership roles rather than for those who are already in a leadership role. Therefore, we welcome applications up to senior lecturer level or professional services equivalent who wish to develop their leadership skills and potential.

Aurora is a key initiative to address the under-representation of women leaders in Higher Education. The Aurora programme aims to enable a wider range of women to think of themselves as future leaders, providing a positive experience of leadership and encouraging participants to recognise their talent and capabilities, develop the skills they will need and to ‘step-up’ to future leadership posts.

What Aurora Covers

The Aurora programme focuses on core areas associated with leadership success:

  • Understanding organisations and the sector;
  • Developing leadership behaviours, skills and knowledge;
  • Identifying and overcoming barriers and obstacles;
  • Growing confidence and a leadership identity;
  • Building networks, coalitions and support processes.

Aurora participants will attend 4 development days (at approximately monthly intervals); peer support through action learning sets (ALS’s) organised and delivered locally, and will be paired with a senior Manchester mentor, many of whom are Aurora Alumni themselves.

University Aurora Champion and Aurora Alumna, Dr Rachel Cowen, who is also University Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, will support the application process by fielding expressions of interest.

Rachel says: "Aurora was a powerful and career enhancing experience for me affirming by beliefs in my leadership potential and giving me the confidence as a part time academic to apply for a senior leadership role. It’s a privilege to champion the programme so that it can enable a diverse range of women to step up to leadership."

How to apply

If you would like to apply for Aurora please read the information to check your eligibility and complete the application form by midnight on Monday, 28 November 2022. ‌

Please ask your line manager to complete the Line Managers Accreditation.  This is also due for submission by Monday, 28 November.
Informal expressions of interest can also be made to:

Further information about the programme is available through the Advance HE website.