Tower One, LSE

Meet the Widening Participation team

General contact details

For general widening participation enquiries, please call +44 (0)20 7852 3662 or email

For other admissions enquiries, please contact Student Marketing and Recruitment.

Teachers and advisers are invited to join our mailing list.


Our postal address is:

Widening Participation Team
7th Floor Pankhurst House
London School of Economics and Political Science
Houghton Street

Team details

jess bond photo

Jess Bond - Head of Widening Participation 

Jess is responsible for LSE’s widening participation strategy and works with colleagues across the School to ensure the effective delivery of the commitments made in our Access and Participation Plan.

Jess leads the School’s Widening Participation team, who work with hundreds of young people each year from groups that are under-represented in higher education. We deliver a range of events and activities to help students to better understand the benefits of higher education and to provide information to help them make decisions about their own educational futures. 

Prior to joining LSE in June 2020, Jess was Head of Widening Participation and Interim Head of Student Recruitment at St George’s, University of London.  She has also worked in a number of widening participation roles at the University of Cambridge, where she set up a flagship outreach project called HE+ and ran many summer schools and residential events.  

Outside of work, Jess is a school governor at a primary school in Cambridge and a long-standing volunteer with Girlguiding in the UK and worldwide.




Alice King

Alice King - Deputy Head Widening Participation (Programme Operations)  

Alice leads the day-to-day operations of the team’s pre-entry outreach and widening access programmes, events and activities to ensure the team is delivering exciting, impactful and high-quality activity, aligned with the Schools’ strategic priorities.  

Alice joined the WP team in August 2020 as a Widening Participation Officer. Alice is a qualified teacher with global experience in widening participation. She worked at the University of Sydney, delivering their admission pathway schemes, and in the Widening Participation team at UCL, delivering post-16 outreach, including their flagship residential summer school. She has also worked for a social mobility charity, delivering outreach in schools. 






Sam Bailey - Deputy Head of Widening Participation (Strategic Projects)

Sam leads on the evaluation and impact reporting of the Widening Participation Team’s pre-entry outreach and widening access initiatives, and manages financial reporting, forecasting and planning. Sam also contributes to the development, monitoring and evaluation of LSE’s Access and Participation Plan commitments.

After completing a BSc Zoology degree at the University of Southampton, Sam has worked in a number of roles developing partnerships with schools and colleges in London, Essex and Hampshire to increase access to Higher Education. Prior to joining LSE in November 2022, he led the evaluation of outreach programmes at Imperial College London.

Outside of work, Sam is a governor at a sixth form college in North London and spends his weekends as a volunteer zookeeper. 




Stephanie Lee

Stephanie Lee - Strategic Consultant and Project Manager

Stephanie has joined the team as a Strategic Consultant and Project Manager for the School’s Access and Participation Plan (APP) until July 2022. Stephanie will be supporting the Head of Widening Participation (WP) to take forward specific priorities in relation to the governance and monitoring of the APP, including acting as Secretary to the School’s Access and Participation Plan Strategy Group.

Prior to joining LSE, Stephanie was Head of WP at the University of Manchester. She has worked in the field of WP since 2003 after completing five years as a secondary MFL teacher.

Outside of work Stephanie is a school governor at a Manchester Special School, a Trustee for North West Gifted and Talented and volunteers for Queen Bee Coaching, a Pankhurst Trust project that aims to increase access to coaching opportunities for women across Greater Manchester.





Firas Ashraf - Access and Participation Plan Project Manager

Firas joined the team as the Project Manager of the School's Access and Participation Plan (APP). Firas will be overseeing the governance and monitoring of the APP and the development of the new four-year APP plan covering 2024-25 to 2027-28. Firas is also acting as Secretary to the School’s Access and Participation Plan Steering Group and the Access and Participation Plan Evaluation and Monitoring Group.

Prior to joining LSE in September 2022, Firas worked in higher education for more than eight years; from supporting the delivery of WP summer schools to developing leadership programs for young males to deconstruct notions of toxic masculinity. Firas has also designed and developed comprehensive adult education programmes for migrant labourers in the UAE, supporting the growth of these programmes to become an educational model for organisations in the MENA region.

Firas completed his MA in Education Policy at King's College London in 2022 and his BA in Social Research & Public Policy at New York University in Abu Dhabi in 2019, through the support of the Sutton Trust and US-UK Fulbright Commission's WP programmes. As a widening participation student himself, Firas is deeply passionate about social mobility and bridging the inequalities students face in education.



Bethan Eveleigh - Access and Participation Plan Project Manager (Strategic Projects)

Bethan has joined the team as Access and Participation Plan Project Manager (Strategic Projects) for the School’s Access and Participation Plan (APP). Bethan will be supporting the Head of Widening Participation by leading two specific projects to reduce barriers preventing students entering higher education and increasing student outcomes in line with the guidance from the Office for Students.  

Since graduating from the University of Exeter with a BA (Hons) in Geography, Bethan has worked in secondary education as a teacher of Geography and a Head of Department. During this time, she completed her Master's in Education that focused on closing the educational gap for ‘at-risk’ students. Since 2019, Bethan has specialised in online education and overseen a range of academic operations and quality measures in online schools.



Rebecca Saxby

Becky Saxby-Smith - Widening Participation Officer

Currently on maternity leave

Becky joined the WP team in November 2015 and has worked across many of the team’s projects, including the design and delivery of the CHOICE programme for two years.

Becky currently manages the Student Ambassador Programme and leads on the development and delivery of the Schools Partnership work.

Prior to working in the widening participation team at LSE, Becky studied Psychology at Cardiff University and has worked in higher education for eight years.





Jess King


Jess King - Widening Participation Officer

Jess King joined LSE in September 2022 and is maternity cover for Becky Saxby-Smith.

Jess currently manages the Student Ambassador Programme and leads on the development and delivery of Schools Partnership work, including the LSE Maths Tutoring programme in partnership with Team Up.

Jess is a graduate of the University for the Creative Arts with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art. Jess has worked in Higher Education since October 2012 and before this for the Learning Department at Tate. Jess has a passion for supporting young people and ensuring fair access and opportunities within higher education. In her previous role at Central Saint Martins, Jess supported various departments to contribute to the widening participation agenda by leading on the operations and delivery of a large number of University events, activities, and staff training.




Katie Willis

Katie Willis - Widening Participation Officer

Katie currently oversees the coordination and delivery of the Pathways Programmes funded by the Sutton Trust. Katie also oversees the development of transition widening access activity.

Katie graduated from the University of Nottingham with a BA (hons) in History and American Studies. Whilst volunteering abroad, she developed an interest in social mobility and worked as part of the National Collaborative Outreach Programme (NCOP) at Harper Adams University after graduating.





Becky Taylor - Widening Participation Officer

Becky is a graduate of English Literature from the University of Sheffield. She joined LSE in September 2021 and leads on the design and delivery of our post-16 access work including LSE Explore, LSE Springboard, LSE Thrive and the Black Achievement Conference.

Becky has a passion for contributing towards the widening participation and social mobility agenda having worked in the sector since 2017. She previously worked for IntoUniversity as a Centre Leader and as a WP Project Coordinator for the University of Cambridge. At Cambridge, she oversaw the HE+ programme and created the flagship access programme Apply: Cambridge.




Renaye Roberts-Sinclair

Renaye Roberts-Sinclair - Widening Participation Coordinator

Renaye joined LSE in January 2022 and is responsible for the coordination of the Student Ambassador scheme. Renaye also supports with the development and delivery of support for the transition of students from targeted groups into LSE.

Renaye graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in 2016 with a Bsc (Hons) in Neuroscience and subsequently completed a MRes in Cognitive Neuroscience with Human Neuroimaging at the University of Sheffield in 2018. Prior to this she took on an advisory role for student support services as a Students’ Union Officer.

Since then, Renaye has worked for UniConnect in partnership with the University of Sheffield, where she oversaw the delivery of subject specific activity.





Zack Hurst - Widening Participation Coordinator (Pathways Programmes)

Zack graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2019 with a BSc (Hons) in Sociology and joined LSE in July 2022. He is responsible for the coordination of the Pathways to Banking and Finance Programme.

Zack has a keen passion for widening participation and working towards equal access and opportunities in higher education. Prior to joining LSE, Zack worked for the Leicestershire and Rutland UniConnect hub, as well as working as an Outreach Officer at the University of Leicester. During this time, he oversaw a variety of programmes and events to help support a range of young people throughout their education, with the aim of promoting fairer access to higher education for students across the East Midlands.




Comfort Moye

Comfort Moye - Widening Participation Coordinator

Comfort is a graduate of Social Anthropology from SOAS, University of London and has worked in higher education for over three years.

She joined LSE in November 2021 and is responsible for coordinating the delivery of LSE Thrive, our Black Heritage access programme, which aims to support increased undergraduate entry to the School from students of Black African and Black Caribbean heritage. As part of this work, she also leads on the delivery of our annual Black Achievement Conference.

She is keen to make a positive impact on issues of social inequality within the education and employment sector. Outside of this role, Comfort manages a programme which supports Year 13 student’s transition to university for a specialist education initiative.




Catherine Parkinson

Catherine Parkinson - Widening Participation Coordinator

Catherine joined LSE in 2021 and is responsible for coordinating LSE Explore, our subject-specific access work and LSE Springboard, our regional access programme for students who reside outside of South East England.

Catherine is a graduate of the Universities of St Andrews, Oxford, and Glasgow. She has worked in widening participation since 2018 and is a strong supporter of social justice and education policy reform. Catherine also previously worked in disability mentoring, support, and advocacy in higher education and the third sector.





Phil Gerrard - Office Coordinator

Phil provides administrative support for the Widening Participation team across the full range of its programmes. He also deals with general external queries about Widening Participation at LSE. 

Phil graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Drama, and his first job at LSE was in the Graduate Registry. He then moved on to admissions roles at the Institute of Education and the University of London External Programme, before taking time out to pursue an acting career. During this time, he also took up temporary posts at SOAS, the University of East London, QMUL, and several other HE institutions. He returned to full-time work in the HE sector when he joined LSE’s Widening Participation team in February 2020. 

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Tel: +44 (0)20 7852 3662