Women at Churchill

Churchill College was in the vanguard of dramatically expanding female participation in Cambridge University: it was the first of the formerly all-male Cambridge colleges to vote to admit women, with the initial cohort of female students arriving in 1972.

Women at Churchill

Churchill College was in the vanguard of dramatically expanding female participation in Cambridge University: it was the first of the formerly all-male Cambridge colleges to vote to admit women, with the initial cohort of female students arriving in 1972.

Since 1972 women have formed a core and essential part of our community, being heavily represented in the College students' unions, in sport, music, drama, art and many other areas of extra-curricular activity, all while achieving outstanding academic results. There is a strong female presence on the College's Fellowship, and many of its academics most focused upon working closely with students (Directors of Studies, for instance) are women.

The current Master, Professor Dame Athene Donald, is the first woman to hold this role in the College, and is determined that during her tenure the proportion of women students in the College should grow towards parity with men. Watch our videos and read about some of our talented female members to get a sense of what it is like to be a woman at Churchill.

"Women here fit seamlessly, as they should, into our wider culture. Churchill is friendly, open and welcoming,  embracing inclusivity. With our particular focus upon STEM subjects within the terms of our foundation, it is important that minorities of every sort – including women, who are seriously underrepresented in some STEM subjects across the UK – feel that they belong.

To achieve this we intend to build on our historically pioneering stand in admitting women to create an even stronger community for women, and especially to enable them to thrive in those disciplines where stereotypically they might not. Both in our admissions work and once women arrive in the College, we strive to ensure their voice is heard, their concerns addressed and that their achievements are recognised. Vital to this is working directly with the student body to support their own actions."

Professor Dame Athene Donald

Women at Churchill in the news

Celebrating women in engineering at Churchill: a panel discussion

This year marks not only the 100th anniversary of women receiving the vote but also Churchill College’s highest ever intake of female undergraduate engineers. Watch our special panel discussion.

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The 'Winston Wheelers' Ride the Night for Women V Cancer

Members of Churchill's Catering Team — Rebecca Cresswell, Elona Gjegja, Sarah Crawley and Jill Hay (pictured) are raising money for Breast Cancer CareJo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and Ovarian ...

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Master Athene Donald on achieving gender parity in the sciences in the Cambridge Magazine

Master Professor Athene Donald discusses how to fix gender equality in the sciences.

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Celebrating International Women's Day 2018

Churchill College has always been at the vanguard of pushing for progress with regards to gender parity. This International Women's Day we celebrate our female members and remind ourselves ...

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An International Woman: Germaine de Staël (1766-1817) — Professor Alison Finch

This International Women's Day, Churchill Fellow, Professor Alison Finch celebrates the Swiss-French thinker Germaine de Staël. (1766–1817), who was at the heart of intellectual and literary life ...

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Amazon Women in Innovation Bursary — Helping young women fulfil their ambitions of a career in innovation and technology

Sophie Durrant (U16), is the current holder of Churchill’s first Amazon Women in Innovation Bursary. An annual bursary of £5000 per year to support up to three female students ...

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The American Puzzle — Why has the United States never had a female president?

Why have more than eighty-five countries already had female prime ministers or presidents but the United States has not? Møller Institute Visiting Leadership Scholar — Professor Paula Monopoli discusses her ...

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Turning bad experiences into good lessons: the Churchill Master's TedX talk

Last month Churchill Master, Professor Dame Athene Donald, was invited by the Royal Society to give a TedX talk at their TedX Whitehall event. 

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The Cambridge women campaigning for gender equality in science

“I was taught that the way of progress is neither swift nor easy”. It’s unlikely, as she wrote these words, that Dr Marie Sklodowska-Curie ever imagined the ongoing pathways ...

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Watch our videos about women at Churchill

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Open Days

GIVE ME INSPIRATION! THE PARADIGM SHIFT

A series of conversations with distinguished academics, hosted by the Master of Churchill College, Professor Dame Athene Donald.

Find our more

GIVE ME INSPIRATION! THE PARADIGM SHIFT

A series of conversations with distinguished academics, hosted by the Master of Churchill College, Professor Dame Athene Donald.

Find our more