The University of Westminster’s Career Development Centre hosted the Westminster Distinctiveness Awards on Monday 7 June to celebrate the achievements of our students and recognise the contributions made by our external partners.

This academic year the Career Development Centre matched 250 students to business mentors, placed 93 students in 47 schools to gain valuable teaching experience, and the IT Training Team helped 251 students gain Adobe Certified Associate and Microsoft Office Specialist qualifications. Westminster’s dedicated careers team offered 1,573 placements to students in total, and the University’s Talent Bank service, providing students with paid temporary and part-time work, filled 260 positions.

Taking place at the University of Westminster’s Little Titchfield Street site, the awards ceremony was introduced by the Director of Student Affairs, David Shacklady. Speaking about the event he said: “This is my favourite event of the year because there are so many lovely stories coming out of the presentations.”

Westminster students awarded included Merlvin Moyo, first year Commercial Music BA Honours student, who set-up the charity Helping Homeless Humans in his Freshers’ year. Moving from Bradford to London, Merlvin was shocked at the amount of homelessness in London and decided something had to be done. After reaching out to the University of Westminster Students’ Union for guidance, he launched the charity. He planned various music events, sit outs and group feeding, all to raise money for the homeless. The event that raised the most money accumulated just over £500 and had over 20 student helpers. He has already found a core team who go out every week to feed the homeless, and who have even helped a person get off the street. Merlvin will be working on a strategic plan for the charity over the summer to reach out to a larger audience in the next academic year.

With 3,500 students having registered to volunteer, 60 new ambassadors enrolled, 56 students having attended the National Association of College and University Entrepreneurs (NACUE) conference and 29 students participating in HACKminster, this year has seen around 2,000 opportunities in total offered to students.

Speakers at the awards night included Nicole Nienhaus from the UK’s leading charity for building a more integrated society, The Challenge UK; Peter Sharrocks from City of Westminster College; Nikki Weadon, a placement student studying at the University’s Faculty of Science and Technology; and Cheryl Hudson from the Bank of England. Organisations participating in the scheme included Accenture, Al Jazeera, BBC, Deloitte, Deutsche Bank, Google, Empire Magazine, IBM, Law Commission, Thomson Reuters and many more.

Professor Graham Megson, Provost, handed over the awards to the students, mentors and businesses listed below.

The University of Westminster’s Career Development Centre is committed to increasing the employability of our students and graduates and to enhance the reputation of the University of Westminster in the wider business community in line with the Westminster 2020 Vision.

List of award winners

NMC Mentoring Scheme Mentor/Mentee of the Year

Abimbola Rosiji, Fyizah Mohammed

CDC Mentoring Scheme Mentor/Mentee of the Year

Ginny Powlson, Abbey Savage

PG/MBA International Mentoring Programme Mentor/Mentee of the Year

Gillian Kennedy, Eglantine Leclabart

Volunteering Award

Westminster Entrepreneurial Society, Helping Homeless Humans (Triple H), Johanna Lipponen

Faculty-Led Engagement of Student Volunteers Award

The Science and Engineering Saturday Club

Associates in Schools Award

Remy Ligeika, Mah-noor Ghani, Famiya Abdul Rauf

Talent Bank (Internal) Award

Nazmin Islam

Talent Bank (External) Award

Henriette Stoll

Microsoft Office Specialist and Adobe Certified Associate

Abdulgani Mohamed

Adobe Certified Associate

Courtney Johnston, Jefferson Galvez, Natasha Bellamy, Elizabeth Shogbanmu, Mohammad Abdul Quddus, Elitsa Grigorova

Business Placement Student

Zara Mughal

Media, Arts & Design Placement Student

Emma Grace

Social Sciences and Humanities Placement Student

Alda Simoni

Science and Technology Placement Student

Kata Diosi

Architecture and the Built Environment Placement Student

Elizabeth Pilkington

Employer of the year, Large Organisation

IBM

Employer of the year, Small/Medium Organisation

LISE London LTD

Charity of the Year

The Challenge UK

School of the year

Marylebone Boys School

Best Student Ambassadors for Student Recruitment Award

Waqas Ahmad

Best Student Ambassadors for Outreach Award

Darshan Bhudia

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The Helping Homeless Humans charity team at the Westminster Distinctiveness Awards

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