Nomisha Kurian

Faculty of Education

Nomisha’s PhD focuses on building safe and supportive school climates to promote child wellbeing in high-poverty and trauma-affected communities. As a Widening Participation Ambassador, she has translated her child-centred and equity-driven research into designing and delivering bespoke mentoring and academic enrichment programmes for over 200 at-risk and low-income state school pupils across the UK. Previously, as a Yale University Henry Fellow, she used international human rights law to design an anti-bullying framework for socially marginalised children. Her work on care and inclusion in education has most recently been published in the Oxford Review of Education, the British Educational Research Journal, the Journal of Pastoral Care in Education, the Palgrave Handbook of Citizenship and Education, the Journal of Peace Education and the International Journal of Human Rights. She co-chairs the Cambridge University Wellbeing and Inclusion Special Interest Group and previously co-chaired the Cambridge Peace and Education Research Group.

To promote the wellbeing of marginalised students, I have conducted over 400 hours of intensive ethnographic work with 11-14 year old girls living in extreme poverty in India. I have designed a three-tiered educational policy framework for responding to poor children’s psychosocial and academic needs, accounting for interpersonal and collective traumas such as homelessness, gender-based violence, bullying, bereavement, and chronic illness. I have also conducted 14 mentoring projects with over 100 low-income state school students in the UK over the past 2 years. I aim to continue converting my research into on-the-ground interventions to promote the wellbeing, achievement and life outcomes of disadvantaged learners.

I have been wholly responsible for my PhD fieldwork and policy outputs. The interventions I have designed and executed with under-represented learners in UK state schools have been in my capacity as an Ambassador for the University’s Widening Participation Office and as a teacher and course designer for a leading access and outreach charity, the Brilliant Club.

Other 2022 award winners

Filip Boskovic

Teresa Brevini

Katrin Fischer

Ana Gatoo Jimenez de Laiglesia

Chengzi Guo

Rakoen Marieke Maertens

Katerina Naydenova

Clayton Roberts

Benjamin Tuck

Vaithish Velazhahan

Clara Wanjura

Previous award winners

Find out about the winners awarded in previous years: