We have come to the end of another remarkable academic year at the University of Westminster. We are extremely proud of the successes and experiences of our students, alumni and colleagues who have been recognised and celebrated. As we fast approach the new academic year, we look back on the top 10 highlights from the University of Westminster in the 2019/20 academic year, in no particular order.
1. Smoke Radio dominating the Student Radio Association's 2019 Awards
Westminster’s student radio station Smoke Radio won an outstanding eight awards at the Student Radio Association’s 2019 Awards, including Best Student Radio Station, an award sponsored by BBC Radio 1. As a result of this win, selected students from Smoke Radio were invited to host their own shows over the Christmas period on BBC Radio 1.
2. Several colleagues and alumni being recognised in the Queen's New Year's Honours list
A number of Westminster colleagues and alumni were recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List for their achievements and service of people across the UK. Along with the Birthday Honours, the New Year’s Honours List is the most significant announcement of civilian and gallantry awards. Recipients included Professor Sadie Morgan, who became an OBE for her service to the advocacy of design in the built environment, and alumnus Dr David Michael, who became an MBE for his services to the community in Greater London.
3. University of Westminster's COVID-19 appeal raising over £365,000 to help students in need during the coronavirus pandemic
In response to the coronavirus outbreak, the University launched its distinctive COVID-19 Response Fund Appeal, which has raised over £365,000 to date, thanks to the amazing support of our communities coming together. The Appeal supports a number of schemes set up by Westminster, including the ‘Students as Co-Creators Programme’, the ‘Stay on Track Scheme’, the ‘Living Expenses Support Scheme’ the ‘Stay Sheltered Scheme’ and the ‘Stay Connected’ scheme.
4. Accounting students winning the IBM University Business Challenge
Five Accounting BSc Honours students from the University of Westminster were crowned the winners of the IBM University Business Challenge, the world’s longest-running simulation-based online competition. The competition involves three challenging rounds, in which the team saw off competition from over 250 University teams nationwide over a six-month period.
5. Alumnus Oscar Murillo receiving the Turner Prize 2019
Fine Art Mixed Media BA alumnus Oscar Murillo was awarded the Turner Prize 2019, alongside three others who were nominated for the award after they came together and made a plea for judges to recognise “community, multiplicity and solidarity”. Oscar was selected for his participation in the 10th Berlin Biennale, his solo exhibition Violent Amnesia at Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge and his solo exhibition at the chi K11 art museum in Shanghai.
6. Westminster receiving £4.4 million Quintin Hogg Trust funding to enhance facilities and student experience
Funding from the Quintin Hogg Trust has contributed towards the creation of a range of major projects across the University to enhance student experience during the 2019-2020 academic year. Highlights include the new Students’ Union space ‘The Hideaway’, the introduction of the Enhanced Reality Lab and the Student Law Clinic expansion.
7. Science4u receiving Queen's Award for Voluntary Service
The annual Science4u outreach event, which aims to inspire disadvantaged students to study STEM subjects, was honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service. The Award is the highest accolade a voluntary group can receive in the UK to recognise their work to benefit local communities.
8. Fashion students showing at London Fashion Week and receiving feedback from Rihanna
For the third year running, 13 students in the final year of the Fashion Design BA course showed their AW20 collections on the schedule at London Fashion Week, while ten Menswear MA students took part in the first ever virtual London Fashion Week in June. A group of second year Fashion Design BA students were also selected to work on a six-week live project with Rihanna’s luxury fashion brand FENTY, which culminated in a runway show at Ambika P3 on Marylebone Campus where Rihanna gave students individual feedback on their work.
9. Westminster's Creative Enterprise Centre winning the Higher Education Team Enterprise Award
The University’s Creative Enterprise Centre won the Higher Education Team Enterprise award at the 2019 National Enterprise Educator Awards, serving as national recognition for the Centre’s Enterprise Programme and successes of Westminster’s student cohort. The Awards recognise excellence within enterprise and entrepreneurship education in UK higher education, with winners receiving £1,000 in funding.
10. Westminster students winning big at the Royal Television Society and Kodak Awards
Westminster students from the Film BA Honours course led the way in the Royal Television Society Awards with 11 nominations and three wins for their film submissions created on their course, including Best Sound Design, Best Production Design and Best Factual Film. Students also won six awards at the Kodak/Nahemi Student Commercial competition, where they created 30 second commercials against a brief for given brands on 16mm film stock provided by Kodak.