Marie Notermans

Marie Notermans

Marie Notermans is testament to what can be achieved through determination, dedication and drive. The English and Spanish student was named as the Arts and Humanities Undergraduate of the Year in 2013, beating off fierce nationwide competition from her peers. The awards, with 12 different categories, are designed to identify and celebrate the UK’s best undergraduates in specific areas. The shortlisting process mirrors a graduate recruitment selection procedure, and includes online tests, interviews and assessments.

She ranks the award as her proudest moment. She said: “Being named Undergraduate of the Year in Arts and Humanities, and being able to meet Sir Trevor MacDonald, was a really proud moment. It was something I had worked hard for, and it really helped me believe that my degree was teaching me useful skills for any industry.”

Marie said that recognising the wealth of values and skills presented by her degree course was an important factor of her time as a student, and advised others to try and identify and promote the expertise they gain as part of their studies. She said: “I would always encourage everyone not to underestimate how useful your skills can be to an organisation – even if you don’t tick their boxes, having a different perspective should never be underestimated and it is never too late to start something new.

Marie said that she draws inspiration from people who show perseverance, whether in their work or private life. She said: “I’m inspired by anyone who has made a decision to do something with their life, and made a success of it by sticking with it. My family are a huge inspiration to me to keep going, as well as some of the great people I’ve had the fortune to work with and be taught by, in the UK, Chile and in Spain.”

Marie said that, to her, the theme of International Women’s Day 2014 of ‘inspiring change’ meant identifying and implementing change, for the benefit of others. She added: “We live in a society that is in a better position socially and economically than it ever has been, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t problems. Inspiring change to me means helping draw attention to where and how we can do better.”