The Westminster Working Cultures programme was nominated for the Highest Impact University Initiative category, which recognises projects that improve less-advantaged students’ future prospects and employability skills. 

Organised by upReach and supported by the Social Mobility Commission, the first ever Student Social Mobility Awards showcase outstanding achievement and provide role models to those from lower socio-economic backgrounds.

The Westminster Working Cultures programme was nominated by Florentina Terholli, a third-year Law student who took part in a visit to Washington DC in September 2018.

Other social mobility awards include Outstanding Achievement, Biggest Champion of Social Mobility and Best Mentor. Rachael Millar, Head of the Social Mobility Commission Secretariat, said: “The role of mentors and initiatives that support people is crucial – and we hope these expand so that everyone has the chance to realise their potential.”

The Westminster Working Cultures DC programme offers undergraduate students the opportunity to experience working culture in the US capital, and to and to enhance their employability skills.  Through interaction with Westminster alumni and local professionals, students are able to learn about the working environment, history and culture of the city, and to reflect on their own career-related development and learning.

Organised by the University’s Alumni team and made possible with the support of the Quintin Hogg Trust, the week-long trip is part of wider placement learning at the University. Other Westminster Working Cultures destinations include Mumbai, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

Alyssa Martin, Alumni Networks Manager, said: “We’re very excited the Westminster Working Cultures programme has been nominated for the Highest Impact University Initiative Award. We are so fortunate to have such a supportive global Westminster community who really believe in helping the next generation to be successful, no matter their background. Hearing the international professional wisdom and advice, our students really are making the most of this unique real world, global experience.”

The Awards’ independent judging panel comprises leading representatives from a range of fields. It includes CEO of Impetus Private Equity Foundation Andy Racliffe, interim Director General of Higher Education and Further Education at the Department of Education Emran Mian, Founder and CEO of The Student Development Co. and the Career Ear app Claudine Adeyemi, and Director of Fair Access to Higher Education Professor Sir Les Ebdon CBE DL, among other figures in education and politics.

The Awards ceremony, hosted by Baroness Helena Kennedy, patron of upReach, is taking place on Thursday 13 December at the House of Lords. It will be an evening of celebration and networking to recognise the most outstanding students across the UK.

upReach is an organisation that helps young people achieve their career potential by providing support to tackle socio-economic barriers to employment. They work in close partnership with employers and universities to improve social mobility by encouraging conditions for undergraduates from less advantaged backgrounds to access and sustain top graduate jobs.

With students from 165 countries, staff from across the world and a highly international alumni community, the University of Westminster embraces global engagement in all its forms. We have a rich mix of international partnerships in over 20 countries worldwide and place particular emphasis on providing international opportunities for our students, regardless of their background. Our research addresses global themes and is sustained by international collaborations. We are an international institution, located in the heart of London.

Find out more about the Westminster Working Cultures programme.

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