Project information

Mansfield Matters Access & Outreach Initiative

Mansfield is already famous for its access work with the Further Education sector. Our big idea is to expand our outreach activities over the next five years. We will work with younger students, from year 9, encouraging them to excel academically and aspire to top universities

October 2011 - December 2016

Charity information

Mansfield College, Oxford

Mansfield College, Oxford logo
  • Need


    Students are often put off applying to Oxford because they feel it is out of their reach.


    The Mansfield Matters Access and Outreach Initiative will strive to increase access to Oxford over the next 5 years by inviting younger students and their teachers (from schools with little experience of Oxford) to visit the University to talk to current students and work with Oxford tutors. We will address the myths and preconceptions about Oxford - financial, social and intellectual - and show students how to prepare themselves academically to make competitive applications

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To widen participation at Oxford and other top universities


    » Students visit Mansfield College where they are able to see Oxford first-hand, meet students and engage in specific academic activities with tutors.
    » Presentations in schools allow students to learn more about Oxford and the benefits of Higher Education, and ask individual questions.

    Success would be increasing the participation of our regional schools in our outreach activities and achieving higher applications to Oxford and other universities.

  • Impact


    One important long term change we will bring about is shifting attitudes among students and teachers about what higher education entails. We will do this by challenging their preconceptions about what studying at Oxford is really like and engaging them in diverse and creative ways. We will collect feedback and monitor the outcomes of our outreach events, with success ultimately coming through increased visits, feedback, awareness and applications to Oxford and other universities.


    Mansfield has a long track record of outreach activity and know what success entails. The only risk we face is the limits placed on how much outreach work we can do - a limit that is dictated by the funds and resources available to the College and its outreach staff.


    We will prepare progress reports and newsletters on our access activity that will be sent to the project's supporters every three months.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £110,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £50,000 Access Officer 1/2 of 5-year salary to continue having a full-time Access Officer
      £45,000 Travel costs 5-year transportation costs to visit schools for access events
      £15,000 Food and Accomodation 5 year cost of food and accomodation for school outreach visits

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Brimelow Fund £5,000 Guaranteed
    Harkness Fund £4,500 Guaranteed
  • Background


    As part of the University's outreach activities, a scheme has been developed to simplify communication between the University and all schools and colleges in the United Kingdom. Each Oxford college is now linked to a number of Local Authorities to ensure that each school has a named first point of contact in the University.

    Mansfield has links with the following Local Authorities:

    East Riding


    The immediate beneficiaries of our project will be students and their teachers. The secondary beneficiaries will be the University as a whole, which will benefit immensely from having a larger and more diverse pool of applicants, almost all of whom will come from under-represented or overlooked areas of the country.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Mansfield has established itself in Oxford as a strong access college. David Lammy, Tottenham MP recently remarked on our success in this area when he noted that, ‘Some colleges are doing extraordinary things – Mansfield College, Oxford, for example.’ (‘Should Oxford and Cambridge broaden their student intake?’ The Guardian, 30 April 2011). We believe that with additional resources we will be able to build on these previous successes and inspire younger students to think big about university.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Baroness Helena Kennedy

    Baroness Kennedy will be the Principal of Mansfield from Sep 2011 and has personal and professional experience with the objectives of access work

    Helen Etty

    Helen has been involved with Mansfield's access initiatives since October 2003 and leads the College Office's efforts to develop additional programs

    Lucinda Rumsey

    Lucinda is the Senior Tutor at Mansfield and has oversight of the College's admissions. She works closely with Helen in the College Office.

Oxford University was so different to what I expected and not like people make out. My visit to Mansfield definitely changed my perspective of Oxford.

yr 9 student, Hull