Pictured left to right: Kate Gaskell, Jonathan Colmer, Floella Benjamin, Ross Davidson, Niall Dosad, James Chapman.

Floella rewards career driven students

Five ambitious students are each celebrating a £1,000 payout to further their careers.

Plans as varied as wildlife media, product design, volunteering overseas and football coaching have received funding from the Floella Benjamin career development awards.

The annual awards, now in their third year, look to develop employability and give financial support for innovative career ideas.

Kate Gaskell, a third year Biosciences student from the University’s Cornwall campus, will be taking a Wildlife in the Media course at Cornwall College, and undertaking a placement with the Ecologist magazine.

Overseas trips beckon for two students. Ross Davidson, in his penultimate year studying Law and advanced Mandarin Chinese, will be studying ‘World Trade Organisation Law and China’ at the LSE-PKN summer school in Beijing, while staying with a Chinese family. Economics student Jonathan Colmer will use the award to go to Uganda to work in the Mubende region with aid organisation ‘ New Build Uganda’. This builds on Jonathan’s voluntary work with the Exeter Global Centre and furthers his goal to work in international development.

Football crazy Niall Dosad will be working towards qualifications in coaching club football and heading to America to coach underprivileged children. Niall hopes to set up his own initiatives to get children involved in sport when he finishes his Sport Science degree next year.

Inventive final year Masters in Mechanical Engineering student James Chapman will be using funds to apply for a patent. He has designed a product to improve safety and save time for fencing contractors. James will be supported by the University’s Innovation Centre to help enable his ideas to come to fruition.

Dr Floella Benjamin, OBE DL Chancellor of the University of Exeter says: “These awards enable students to turn good ideas into a plan of action. When judging we are looking for students who are driven, focused and willing to go the extra mile to ensure career success. It is great that these awards are being used for such a variety of projects, to show that Exeter students are having an impact around the world.”

Competition was intense for the five £1,000 awards, with 70 applications received. All applicants had to write and submit a costed proposal explaining what it was they needed and how it would help their future employability.

These proposals were judged by staff at the Careers and Employment Service and by Floella. The Floella Benjamin Career Development awards were devised by the University of Exeter’s Careers and Employment Service as part of a range of opportunities available to students to develop their personal skills and employability.

Date: 20 January 2009

Read more University News