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Top placement students gain awards

Posted 23 February 2011

Watch the video on our YouTube channel.

Front left to right are Cheryl Stewart, Kate Henderson and Paula Middleton with back row left to right Chris Edmunds, Alex Harris and James Croxford with their Aspire Awards

Six students studying at Harper Adams University College were the recipients of Aspire Awards recently, in recognition of their achievements during their placement years.

Students studying at the University College in Shropshire take part in a sandwich year in industry as part of their courses.

Last week, the six students were handed an award and a £50 book token to recognise their outstanding achievements during this year.

The students, Cheryl Stewart, Kate Henderson, Paula Middleton, Chris Edmunds, Alex Harris and James Croxford worked in a variety of roles including with the RSPCA, Bentley and an African game reserve.

Chris Edmunds, 22, from Cockermouth, Cumbria, worked as an Assistant Surveyor for Davidson and Robertson Rural, a firm of Chartered Surveyors and Land Agents, at their Edinburgh office.

He said: “I was involved with a variety of work including Compulsory Purchase and Compensation, Valuations, Planning, Development, Property Management, Landlord and Tenant and latterly Renewables.

“There was no day ever the same and my responsibilities grew as my placement progressed. I was the first point of contact for property management issues in relation to the Border Railway Project (reinstating railway from Edinburgh to Scottish Borders).

“I thoroughly enjoyed the majority of my work, especially carrying out compensation claims from initial instruction to final compensation for clients on my own with little supervision which was very satisfying and fulfilling.

“The renewable sector is very buoyant currently and I only touched on this whilst on placement; however when I go back to the firm in August I hope to utilise my own knowledge regarding biomass, which is an area the firm does not currently focus upon. Davidson and Robertson is a good professional firm who prides itself on training and I look forward to continuing this when I return.”

Alex Harris, 27, of Woolston in Warrington, worked at Kanana Wilderness in Botswana, a privately owned and run game reserve and photographic safari lodge in Central West Botswana.

He said: “I was a safari guide to mostly European tourists as well as a supervisor to a native workforce of San Bushmen - a very challenging aspect of the job due to a cultural and language barrier."

Abigail Hind, Director of the Aspire Centre, opened the event and said: “We are here to celebrate your achievements with the Aspire prize for personal development planning and it’s in recognition of how the six of you have learnt and made the most out of your placement positions.

“Hopefully you are continuing to build on your placement experience since you have got back and will all go onto successful careers.”

She also thanked the staff, support staff and employers for all of their support.

The Aspire Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) is based at Harper Adams University College and promotes excellence in teaching and learning in higher education.

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