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Jodie Weatherston

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Lecturer in Social Studies

Career history 
I joined the University of Sunderland in 2019 and I have taught a range of modules across undergraduate and postgraduate courses within social sciences. My interests lie in human rights, international development, and gender-based issues which is reflected in my international voluntary experiences. Alongside my role as a lecturer, I enjoy and actively search for international voluntary opportunities working alongside vulnerable people in a global setting. I am currently active in the Third Sector in a range of roles including, managerial and trustee roles, research, training, teaching and fundraising, community outreach and international development work. 

I am currently a Trustee for the organisation ReportOUT which is a human rights organisation that documents the lived experiences of sexual and gender minorities across the globe. Between 2019-2022 I supervised the research team to conduct research on Uganda, Zimbabwe, Morocco, Ethiopia, Mongolia and Belize, working alongside partner organisations in each country. From 2019-2020 I managed all volunteering elements of the charity including recruitment, volunteer management, and delivering training. 

Street Child Nepal 
In 2019, I volunteered with Street Child Nepal, working on their 'Breaking the Bonds and Marginalised No More' projects. I worked alongside three students to construct an alumni plan to congregate women who have graduated from Street Child projects. This was to provide opportunities to Dalit women in Nepal and to tackle decent based discrimination. 

Team Kenya 
I went to Kenya in 2018 to work alongside Team Kenya on their community outreach project. This involved training Team Kenya's staff on social research methods, home and school visits, fundraising and teaching in schools. 

Additional voluntary roles
  • West End Refugee Service - Befriender 
  • COCO Charity - Voluntary Social Researcher 
  • Traidcraft - Voluntary Social Researcher 
  • Northumbria Police - Voluntary Social Researcher 

I completed my BSc (Hons) Social Sciences: Sociology degree at the University of Sunderland in 2018 then went on to complete an MSc International Development at Northumbria University in 2019. I recently completed a PGCE Higher Education at the University of Sunderland in 2021 where I gained my HEA Fellowship.


Upon graduation, I was delighted to receive the Ede and Ravenscroft Award, which was nominated by academic staff at the University of Sunderland. This is awarded to outstanding students for academic excellence and extracurricular activities.

I received the SuPA award in 2019 which is a professional accredited award from the University of Sunderland, which recognises students contributions to volunteering, employability and academic pursuits.

Teaching and supervision

I teach across social sciences at undergraduate and postgraduate level on the following modules: 

  • SOC133: Social Inequalities in Society 
  • SOC131: Introduction to Sociological Thought 
  • SOC236: Gender, Diversity and Human Rights: A Global Perspective
  • SOC334: From Witchcraft to Homophobia: The Sociology of Hatred and Persecution 
  • SSCM44: Sex, Gender and Sexuality: Citizenship, Choice and the State 
  • Social, Personal and Professional Development Skills 
  • Sociology Dissertation Supervision 

Research interests for potential research students

My research interests lie within a sociological and international development based framework, with a global outlook. These include: 

  • Human rights
  • International development and sustainability 
  • Sexual violence 
  • Forced child marriage
  • Female genital mutilation 
  • Modern slavery 
  • Conflict
  • Social inequalities - gender, poverty and race


I have conducted research on the following topics: 

  • Out in Uganda: The lived experiences of SOGIESC Ugandans. This was collected in partnership with ReportOUT and Ugandan based organisations.
  • Contradictions of the Girl Effect Paradigm: To what extent can the Girl Effect Paradigm offer a solution to child, early, forced marriage in Nepal through educational and economic empowerment? (MSc Dissertation). For this project, I collected my research oversees in Nepal through Street Child.
  • A right of passage or a violation of human rights? What are the reasons for female genital mutilation/cutting's continued use in Kenya and how successful have international efforts been in reducing it? (BSc Dissertation) 
  • Does gender inequality still exist within education in Tanzania and to what extent? (COCO Charity) 
  • Child labour and pesticide suicide: What are the environmental and ethical issues involved within the cotton industry in India? (Traidcraft Charity)
  • Safeguarding around sex work in the North East (Northumbria Police)
  • Human rights
  • International development and sustainability 
  • Sexual violence 
  • Forced child marriage
  • Female genital mutilation 
  • Modern slavery 
  • Conflict
  • Social inequalities - gender, poverty and race
World Pride Copenhagen (2021)
I spoke at the World Pride Human Rights Conference in Copenhagen (2021). This was a talk on human rights abuses against sexual and gender minorities in Uganda where I presented research findings with the chair of ReportOUT and another Trustee.

Last updated 28 February 2024