Professor Sarah O'Shea
Director and Program Leader
Professor Sarah O’Shea has spent over 25 years working to effect change within the higher education sector through research focusing on the access and participation of students from identified equity groups. Her institutional- and nationally-funded research studies advance understanding of how underrepresented student cohorts enact success within university, navigate transition into this environment, manage competing identities and negotiate aspirations for self and others. This work is highly regarded for applying diverse conceptual and theoretical lenses incorporating theories of social class, identity work, gender studies and poverty. Sarah has published extensively in the field and has been awarded over A$3 million in grant funding since 2009; she is also an Australian Learning and Teaching Fellow, a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PFHEA) and a Churchill Fellow. Sarah took up the role of Director, NCSEHE in 2020 after spending a decade working as a teaching/research academic at the University of Wollongong.