The oxford university will soon put up portraits of women and ethnic minorities to promote greater diversity and to redress balance from the university’s walls being lined with paintings of male alumni. As many as four Indian origin alumni feature in the list including eminent journalist Reeta Chakrabarti, primary health care scholar Trisha Greenhalgh, linguistics scholar Aditi Lahiri human rights activist Kumi Naidoo.
The new works will adorn the wall in the university’s central public spaces and will be put on display at an exhibition in Oxford later in the year.
Reacting to the development, Chakrabarti who studied at Exeter College, Oxford, said: “I loved my time at Oxford. There weren’t – then – many people from my background at university there. But that didn’t stop my experience from being overwhelmingly good.
She also expressed hope that it will encourage an ever more diverse range of people to study there.
“We’re not taking anyone down – but the portraits have been almost exclusively men and we’re just beginning to redress the balance,” says head of the university’s equality and diversity unit Trudy Coe told BBC.
Underscoring the need for such initiatives Ms Coes said, “It will allow students to look up and see people who look like them. It’s sending a signal to a wider range of students that they belong here.”