At the start of March, we reflected on the success of our first careers conference for current students. Diversifying Careers in Government & Politics was the brainchild of two Hertford alumni, Josh Platt and Dr James Weinberg, who wanted to do something to help address the gap in equality, diversity and inclusion provision in university politics departments and the wider political sphere. The event brought together students from under-represented background at four universities and inspiring speakers including Jacqui Smith and Kumar Iyer.
Little did we know that this would be our last public event of the year but, as the news was breaking and just days after lockdown had started, Hertford’s Prof. Zhanfeng Cui announced a breakthrough of his own. Working with colleagues from the Oxford Suzhou Centre for Advanced Research (OSCAR), he developed one of the first rapid tests for Covid-19. By November, Prof. Cui’s test would be in use at Heathrow.