The Times and Sunday Times have named the University of Bradford as the UK’s University of the Year for Social Inclusion 2020.

The national award recognises Bradford as a leader in social inclusion that supports students of all backgrounds to achieve their potential.

Universities across the UK were assessed on various measures, including the proportion of students who were educated in non-selective state schools, the proportion who come from ethnic minority backgrounds and the proportion recruited from the most deprived areas.

Other categories include the proportion of students who are disabled, the proportion who are first generation students (those whose parents did not attend university) as well as student performance and graduate prospects.

Some of the stand-out achievements made by the University of Bradford include more than 70 per cent of its intake being BAME students and more than 50 per cent being from some of the most socio-economically deprived areas.

The number of students at Bradford who are from postcodes where traditionally participation in higher education is at its lowest is also rising faster in comparison to the rest of the UK. The University also boasts one of the lowest racial attainment gaps in the country, which compares the proportions of BME students and white students who achieve firsts or 2:1s.

Alastair McCall, Editor of the Sunday Times Good University Guide, said: “Bradford is a university for its city and the wider region, and it offers lessons to the rest of British higher education on how to effectively embrace social diversity on campus.”

"The University provides opportunities for a higher education that are denied to so many elsewhere: two-thirds of the intake comes from families where parents did not attend university, 40 per cent are mature students taking degrees many years after leaving school and more than half are recruited from the four poorest socio-economic groups.”

McCall continued, “These statistics show that social inclusiveness in the student body is ingrained in Bradford's DNA. And it is all achieved with high levels of professional employment and excellent degree outcomes for students from all backgrounds - a remarkable achievement and one well deserving the award of University of the Year for Social Inclusion.”

Professor Shirley Congdon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bradford, said: “I am delighted that the University of Bradford’s long-standing contribution to promoting social inclusion has been recognised. This award, and ranking 3rd out of 130 UK universities, reflects our enduring focus on social inclusion and enabling students from socially and economically diverse backgrounds to maximise their talents while achieving positive academic and graduate employment outcomes.”

“We care deeply about social inclusion and will continue to focus on removing barriers to access and participation in higher education and enhancing the prospects of all our students.”