PhD student Eduardo Camarillo Abad has been appointed as the first Access Officer for the MCR at Fitzwilliam College.
Eduardo, a first-year Physics PhD candidate working in the Space Photovoltaics group, will be Access Officer for Fitzwilliam College postgraduates for one year. He’s been a member of Fitzwilliam College since October 2018, when he studied an MRes in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology.
He said that he felt compelled to step into the post due to the negative impact that underrepresentation can have on mental health and the progress of people’s studies.
Eduardo explained: “Fitzwilliam College has a wonderful and diverse postgraduate community, and we considered it important to have a figure within the MCR committee to acknowledge, celebrate and protect this diversity.
“Whilst recent MCR committees have acted to represent the diversity within College, the appointment of an Access Officer will ensure that these actions continue to be undertaken in the future. The new position aims to ensure equal representation by gathering different groups – such as ethnic minorities, LGBTQ+, families, international students and so on – under an access umbrella, and ensuring that our MCR is a friendly and supportive environment for all.”
The role has a broad remit of both outreach and a welfare perspective, helping postgraduate students feel included and represented, making sure that MCR events are inclusive, and being a point of contact and support in case any act of discrimination is experienced.
Eduardo said: “My role will help to show Fitzwilliam as the friendly, diverse and accessible College it is, so that new students from any background can see themselves as members of our community and feel encouraged to apply to Fitz.”
This year has seen an extensive programme of open days, school visits, shadowing schemes, subject-focused study days and other initiatives, including our Access and Widening Participation Conference in September.