Our 100: “I love the way she kind of went in and shook things up – she made her difference a strength”

Posted by cc576 at Feb 17, 2021 02:07 PM |
Shining a light on Esua Goldsmith

There are just two weeks remaining until nominations for Our 100 close. If you haven’t heard of Our 100 yet, it’s just one of the ways that the University is celebrating its first 100 years as an institution that’s created special moments for millions of staff and students. We’re asking you to reflect on your personal time at the University, your experiences, your stories, your memories, or on something that makes you proud to be part of this University, such as a research contribution, a student who’s gone on to change lives, or a member of staff who’s helped you develop your career. By doing that, we’ll build a comprehensive and inclusive portrait of the University – your individual experiences create our entire story. These will be saved in a ‘Centenary Memory Bank’ and will go with us into our next century. We want everyone to be involved, whatever your job or level of study.

Esuantsiwa Jane Goldsmith
In the three weeks remaining until nominations close, we’re bringing you some inspiration from people who have already submitted their nominations. Last week we brought you the Attenboroughs and shared a nomination for the family that described how they’ve inspired generations of staff and students alike. This week, we’re bringing you Esuantsiwa (Esua) Jane Goldsmith, who made University of Leicester history in the mid-seventies. Read the nominations below and watch the film to understand what makes Esua such a special part of our history.

"Esuantsiwa Jane Goldsmith became the first woman of colour to become President of the Leicester Student Union in 1975. She also went on to be the first woman of colour to be Chair of the Fawcett Society (2001).

"Esua was a live wire at Leicester when I was there. She fought for excellent causes, and did everything with vigour and enthusiasm. She believed in action and making a difference, and achieved it. "

“I love the way she kind of went in and shook things up – she made her difference a strength. So I think she should be commemorated as part of Our 100.”

Esua made a huge impact on the lives of staff and students during her time at the University. Mainly through her determination and drive to achieve equality. Esua led many student campaigns, particularly to combat sexism, and she also worked alongside staff to establish the Stanhope House Nursery for staff and student childcare. She organised Black Cultural events at the University, and alongside this penned articles that raised awareness of inequalities and misconceptions that society held towards black people.

Esua has since gone on to become a high energy strategist and facilitator, with over 30 years’ experience as an activist in women’s human rights worldwide. She is a consultant to over 100 different voluntary organisations nationally and internationally, as a specialist in diversity, migration, and international development, and in connecting communities in the UK and Africa in her role as Queen Mother of Development and raising funds for her village in Ghana.

Become a part of the story
If you’d like to be involved, submit your nominations before 28 February on the Our 100 webpage. And remember, the more information, anecdotes, photos or memorabilia linked to your nomination, the better – they help us tell our story.

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