Students from the School of Organisations, Economy and Society won first and second place in an app designing competition at the Microsoft BAME Network and EDI Diversity Festival.
Students were invited to Microsoft Reactor in Finsbury for the event in celebration of Black History Month. The Microsoft competition celebrated the talents of students with African, Caribbean and Asian heritage. Teams were called to compete against other university teams, with the hope of winning a VIP Microsoft Experience. Students from Westminster won first and second place for their app designs using the Microsoft PowerApps software.
The students also had a chance to explore career opportunities at Microsoft and listen to the panel of inspiring guest speakers sharing their own career journey. Jennifer Achiro, who works within recruitment at Microsoft, shared tips about what Microsoft looks for throughout their recruitment process.
The Microsoft Reactor is a hub for developers and start-ups, providing training, networking, meetups, hackathons and lots of technical content.
The students who attended the event are from the Business Economics BSc Honours course, the Business Management (Economics) BA Honours course, the Business Management (Entrepreneurship) BA Honours course, the Human Resource Management BA Honours course and the International Business BA Honours course.
Karen Kufuor, Course Leader of the Business Economics BSc Honours course, said: “On arrival the energy in the room was uplifting. The students were soon ready to get going designing an app using Microsoft’s PowerApps.”
Before the results were announced the competing teams had a surprise visit from Rajesh Agrawal, Deputy Major of London for Business. He gave an empowering speech on his rise “from humble beginnings” and there was a photo opportunity with the students.
Kufuor added: “The day could not have ended better, when it was announced that a Westminster team had won the competition with another coming runners-up.”
Sheila Mansaray, first-year Business Economics BSc Honours student and winning team member, said about the experience: “The event was a great experience and was very inspirational. We were introduced to extremely useful software used to create apps and it was great fun working as a team to create ours. Also, hearing the stories and advice from successful people was very motivating.”
Ratido Marerer-Chiwara, also a first-year Business Economics BSc Honours student and winning team member, said: “It was a very informative, empowering and motivating event. It really helped with building my self-esteem as the event included talks about how we can use our original backgrounds as, essentially, our competitive advantage in the workplace and life in general.”
Zafirah Sheikh, a final-year Business Economics BSc Honours and the third member of the winning team, said: “It was really interesting to see how the Microsoft PowerApps software worked. It was a thoroughly enjoyable event and allowed the opportunity for us to hear from others who had gone through the graduate process.“