Zuleikha undertook a BSc and MSc in Sports Business Management at the University of Central Lancashire. After completing her MSc, she was elected to serve as the Students’ Union President for two years. During her time as a student and in office, Zuleikha engaged in numerous projects locally, nationally and internationally working with sports governing bodies, football clubs, county football associations and refugee agencies advising on South Asian women and girls in football and youth leadership.
Zuleikha was awarded a BAME studentship to study for a PhD at Loughborough University in October 2022.
Research title: An intersectional exploration into the experiences of minority women in football leadership programmes in Europe.
I will be adopting a mixed methods approach to this research project to critically explore minority ethnic women’s social capital in the pursuit of careers in the European football industry. I will be comparing these experiences to see how they differ from the experiences of white women. The results of this study will provide football stakeholders with an understanding in regard to the lived experiences of minority ethnic women, during and following the completion of a football leadership programme. Furthermore, it may provide insights into how future programmes can be shaped to be more inclusive for minority women.
Zuleikha’s research interests are in the fields of sport, development, race, gender, migration, social capital, social justice and sport policy.
- Active Lancashire Board Member
- FA Asian Women in Football National Steering Group
- Muslim Women in Sport Network Youth Committee
- March 2022: Podcast with Dr Joel Rookwood – Refugee and asylum seeker project in Preston.
- March 2022: Wonkhe, AGCAS, ISE and Handshake - Careers 2032 Panel LIVE.
- March 2022: Manchester United Foundation - International Women’s Day Careers.
- February 2022: Wonkhe: Secret Life of Students Conference - Careers 2032 Panel and Keynote.
- January 2022 – Liverpool John Moores University: Visiting Lecturer – National Sports Governance.
- July 2021: Saltley Women’s FC Panel member: Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges.
- June 2021: Muslim Women in Sport Network: Global Summit Interviewer – Athlete Activism, Les Hijabeuses.
- March 202: Kick It Out Panel member: Create the Space, Underrepresentation of women in football.
- August 2020: CIMSPA Panel member: A female perspective: confidence, opportunity and our sector.
- June 2020: Premier League and Kick It Out Game Changers - Long-term strategies to increase equality and diversity in the football industry.
- June 2019: BUCS: Panel member: Discussing diversity and inclusion in higher education sport.
- June 2019: University of Central Lancashire: Guest Lecture and AoC Sport Keynote: Enhancing student employability through sport-based volunteerism.
- May, June 2019: BUCS: Grassroots Hub Bid Pitch, BUCS: Football and Futsal Conference - How to Empower Youth Leaders and Higher Education Heroes project.
- February 2018: BUCS: The Business of Higher Education in Football and Futsal – The Hub Club Partnership and the approach to and value of sports-based volunteerism.
- Girls Active and Youth Sport Trust Changemaker Awards: Character and Leadership Winner 2021
- Lancashire Sports Awards: Volunteer of the Year 2019 (16-24 years old)
- Muslim Women in Sport Network: Power List 2019
- Preston Sports Awards: Volunteer of the Year 2019 (16-24 years old)
- University of Central Lancashire: Sports Business Management Award for Academic Excellence 2019
- British Universities and Colleges Sport: Higher Education Hero 2017/18
- Shorrock, S. and Trimble, L. and Chikh, Z. (2022, continuation). Exploring what role ‘whiteness’ plays in research conducted by academics in a University in the North-West of England.
- Leslie-Walker, A. Chikh, Z., Hyams-Ssekasi, D. and Bennett, H. (2022, continuation). Exploring the experiences of ethnic women working in decision-making (Board) positions, within sport organisations in the United Kingdom.
- The English Football Association/Youth Sport Trust: Asian Girls Insight Report – December 2021