Chancellor of Birmingham City University

Oh my God, I’m Chancellor of Birmingham City University!

It’s an extraordinarily diverse campus with a real commitment to promoting the representation of ethnic minorities and women on its campus. I’m incredibly proud of the work that gets done there. And I’m really sad that at the moment we haven’t been allowed to participate in graduation ceremonies. Look forward to coming back soon.

And I’m hungry to make (and probably will) a commencement speech of my very own to blow your minds and make you miss tottering across the stage on unfeasibly high heels and far too much makeup. I look forward to seeing you guys soon. Keep going and carry on. If you drink a lot of coffee and eat a lot of biscuits, you will get there.

Also, brilliant news. We’ve started the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Diversity Research. A newly established independent research centre, bringing together the expertise of established media professionals and academics, it is doing fantastic work to achieve accurate representation of all sections of society across contemporary UK media. We aim to hold the media industry accountable for diversity and inclusion. This work is absolutely vital.

Even now we are putting together the criteria for a manifesto and a journal for peer-reviewed articles and journalism to assist in the quest for a level playing field in the world of broadcast media. The steering committee is Marcus Ryder, Professor Diane Kemp, Marverine Duffy, myself, and many more. We are a solution-based group. But we were also inviting people to write material for us to go in the journal and also on our website. We are really committed to this.

You can find out more about our exciting work at https://www.bcu.ac.uk/media/research/sir-lenny-henry-centre-for-media-diversity