On 2 October, the University of Portsmouth and Creative Careers celebrated and awarded the most successful work placements taken by students from the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries in the 2018/19 academic year.

The Creative Careers team constantly helps numerous CCI students find employment for their placement year and they also organise this event in celebration of their achievements and on Wednesday afternoon, Associate Dean for Students, Simon Brookes presented the most successful employed and self-employed undergraduates with awards. In fact, the ceremony also included prizes for the employers, the course most engaged with the industry and the member of staff who supports the placement process.

The Self-Employed Placement Student of the Year Award recognised the significant contributions Lucas Cross, a BA (Hons) Fashion and Textile Design student, has made as part of his Self-Employed Placement, Apollo Underwear. The other nominees were Adora Zoe Bazanye-lutu (Dora-Dee), Sanna Suvi-Tuulia Karjalainen (Sanna-Suvi) and Symone D’Rozario (D’Rozario). Lucas’ placement tutor, Susan Noble said: “He has clearly expressed a genuine and authentic commitment and sense of responsibility to the community his products are designed to benefit and will continue with this important business in this altruistic mindset”.

Nicole Watson from the BA (Hons) Media Studies course won the Placement Student of the Year Award after working as a Digital Marketing Assistant at Panasonic. The other nominees put forward by the companies hosting the students in recognition of the significant contributions they have made to their organisations were Kaitlin McKenzie (Debenhams), Tom Barlow (MMT Digital), Olivia Hattam (Pendennis Shipyard), Evangeline Papanicola (Sponge), Lucy Morris (Guildford High School), Alex O’Dell (RDC), Augustin Bartlett (Five by Five Global), Lucy Ferguson (Waterline Media), Sarah Ryan (Rare – Microsoft), Jonny Smart (University of Portsmouth), Paolo Fortuna (BetaDwarf), Poppy Stevens (Guildford High School) and Samuel Birmingham (University of Portsmouth).

“In this role, she had to work independently, make decisions, manage agencies, work with colleagues across the business and across countries and manage budgets. She shined through in all of it, delivering way beyond expectations on all KPIs. She also negotiated contracts with a number of influencers to take our influencer marketing initiatives to new levels, initiated new conversations with retailers to get them involved in our social media activations and managed paid campaigns. She was an integral part of a number of product launches and I can confidently say that a lot of our success over digital over the last year has been down to her contributions. If ever there was a student who deserved to win this award, it’s Nicole! I say that as someone who has had placement students in the team every year for the last 5 years.” – Anand Narayanan, Head of Digital Marketing and Innovations / Brand Communications at Panasonic

The Special Recognition Award praises the outstanding effort given by members of a course team to ensure students understand the value of career-enhancing activities for their future career path and in providing support to secure relevant placements. This year, BSc (Hons) Digital Media was awarded for their continuous efforts to raise awareness of placements and relevant work experience.

The Outstanding Contribution to the Placement Process for an individual staff member was awarded to Susan Noble, Senior Lecturer on the BA (Hons) Fashion and Textile Design course, in recognition of her tireless work to promote the placement option and support students throughout the process.

Waterline Media won the Placement Provider of the Year Award, after being nominated by their placement student, Lucy Ferguson. Here is what she said about her employers: “They have opened my eyes to a completely different way of working such as hitting deadlines and working to briefs in a very short amount of time, it’s so different to university and couldn’t be happier with the way I’m being treated and supported.”

If you are interested in a Placement Year, or help to find work experience and summer internships in the creative industries, make sure to visit the Creative Careers Office (Room 0.03, Eldon Building) or contact us at creative-careers@port.ac.uk.