The REACH ( Race, Ethnicity and Cultural Heritage) events scholarship initiative has been launched to encourage people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds into the events industry. 

The scholarships will provide a £5,000 contribution towards living expenses each year.

The first scholarships will be available to students on Manchester Metropolitan University’s BA (Hons) Events Management degree programme in September 2022.  

The initiative has been launched by an industry task force led by Robert Kenward, Event First Steps and Diversity Ally. DRPG, The Hub, TRO, Smyle and Mash Media have pledged to donate.  

The task force is now calling on more events industry companies to support the initiative. 

Gabby Austen-Browne (Co-founder, Diversity Ally) commented: “The REACH scholarship initiative will help make the events industry more accessible to Black, Asian, and minority ethnic talent who might not normally have access to enter our sector, directly addressing the issue of the event industry talent pipeline. I’m so excited and very proud to be part of this initiative.” 

Robert Kenward (Founder, The Hub) said: “Only 3.5%* of our industry is from a Black or minority ethnic background, whilst 6%* is from an Asian background, and although I have been a recruiter and eventprof for over 21 years, I can count on two hands the number of Black, Asian, and minority ethnic event people I have worked with and on one hand at a senior level. 

“The initiative was created because I wanted to take action and actually achieve something that would have a lasting and tangible impact on our industry.” 

Priya Narain (Co-founder & Director, Event First Steps) said: “Our core focus has always been about the next generation of event professionals entering the industry and ensuring that our pillars of access and route to the industry as well as the diversity of the industry are always at the forefront. The REACH scholarship is the perfect opportunity to practice what we preach and help create a more diverse industry from the grassroot level.”  

Companies that are interested in making a positive and long-term impact to D&I in the industry can contact Gabby Austen-Browne ( or Robert Kenward ( for more information. 

Source: Conference News