MedRACE is a student and staff working group within Leicester Medical School. Students take the lead on projects that interest them, contributing as little or as much as their other commitments permit.
The group is co-chaired by students and staff. Monthly meetings take place online (5.30pm first Thursday each month), we are always open to new members - both student and staff. Contact MedRACE@le.ac.uk for more information or to join.
Meet our previous student co-chairs Takunda Nhiwatiwa and Wendy Tetteh.
Kiran Bhavra, 4th Year Medical Student, Leicester Medical School
My name is Kiran and I’m a 4th year medical student. I became interested in equality, diversity and inclusion during my first year when I submitted a successful motion to the BMA Medical Students Conference 2021 stating that active bystander training should be mandatory to all medical students across the UK in pre-clinical years.
From this, I got involved with MedRACE in helping co-develop and co-deliver active bystander training to medical students for the last few years. I also became the EDI Student Representative for LMS and participate in meetings with staff regarding equality initiatives in the medical school. Inspired by MedRACE, I later went on to help co-create the Midlands Racial Equality in Medicine Network (MREM) in 2022 and later went to be Conference Director for the second annual MREM conference held at Leicester in March.
Outside of EDI, I am a biochemistry graduate from the University of Nottingham. I am my happiest when cooking and baking and love going for a long walk or run outdoors. If I’m not doing either of those, you’ll often find me binge watching Harry Potter or Come Dine with Me.
In my role as Co-chair I hope to focus on sustainability for the future of MedRACE, with specific focus on solidifying and growing allyship within the medical school and the University. Alongside Amar, I hope to continue the growth and success of MedRACE by recruiting and inspiring more students and staff to join us as we continue to be at the forefront of change.
Looking at the success of MedRACE over the past few years, I’m really excited to get involved with even more teaching sessions, workshops and projects. To make it even better, I feel incredibly honoured to be working in this position with the incredible Amar!
Amardeep Sidki, 4th Year Medical Student, Leicester Medical School
My name is Amardeep and I am currently a Fourth Year Medical Student. I am from a Widening Participation (WP) background and entered Medical school through a Foundation Year.
Following Active Bystander training through MedRACE, it became apparent to me that creating an inclusive environment is not optional, but essential. Working with MedRACE has instilled confidence in me to realise that the barriers I once faced as a student from a WP background can be challenged and potentially overturned, with the support and backing of other students and staff.
Since joining MedRACE, I have helped change local NHS policy in order to permit the kara; a religious metal bangle worn by many Sikhs, into theatres as well as supported the delivery of EDI teaching sessions to students and patient educators. As a student co-chair, I am keen to get NHS policy changed nationally and to encourage pre-clinical year groups that they are supported.
Outside of MedRACE, I am interested in research and will be undertaking my intercalated Master’s here in Leicester. I enjoy travelling, hiking as well as exploring the hidden gems found in a charity shop!
MedRACE has allowed me to feel more comfortable when talking about EDI and I want to inspire and empower students to use their voice to challenge and reform existing frameworks. I feel honoured to be sharing this role with Kiran and I aspire to lead changes to support those from underrepresented backgrounds.
Dr Shameq Sayeed, Director of the International Teaching Partnership (China), Leicester Medical School
I started my medical studies at the University of Oxford in 2001. On graduation and after initial clinical training, I spent two years studying towards a Masters in Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. During this time, I also worked as a Clinical Research Fellow in the Cancer Epidemiology Unit in Oxford studying cancers in India and in ethnic minorities within the UK.
This was followed by an Academic Clinical Fellowship in General Practice with a particular interest in global health, primary care and family medicine. I continue to work with colleagues in Palestine towards the development of family practice and primary care as a core part of the Ministry of Health's strategy towards universal health coverage.
I have been a clinical tutor to medical students in Oxford over the last ten years and during this time completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, for which I was awarded a Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy. I moved to the University of Leicester Medical School in 2020 as a Senior Clinical Educator, and am currently a Clinical Associate Professor and Director of the International Partnership with Chongqing Medical University. In addition to working with colleagues in Leicester in developing and delivering teaching (primary care, MSc Clinical Education), I also work closely with students and staff in MedRACE towards ensuring a supportive and inclusive environment within the School.
Professor Kate Williams, Department of Population Health Sciences and Leicester Medical School
I trained as a nurse before studying a degree in Politics at Warwick University. I undertook a PhD in applied health research and worked at the National Institute for Nursing in Oxford as a research officer before joining Leicester University. In addition to my research and teaching activity I have held a range of citizenship roles that have allowed me to follow my interest in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) including leading applications for Athena Swan Silver awards (National awards for gender equality) at Department, College and University level and setting University and College strategy for EDI.
My roles include Programme Director for the Masters in Applied Health Research in the Department of Population Health Sciences, Pastoral Support Unit (PSU) Advisor in Leicester Medical School, and Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Lead for the College of Life Sciences. I work closely with students and staff as part of the MedRACE group and facilitate a range of student led projects that support inclusion.