Students at the Heart of Knowledge Exchange (SHoKE)

Students at the Heart of Knowledge Exchange (SHoKE) logo

Students at the Heart of Knowledge Exchange (SHoKE) connects student volunteers and employers from local organisations to work together to develop innovative solutions to community problems and generate real societal change.

This process is mutually beneficial to students and employers. The programme gives students the opportunity to work entrepreneurially to solve real-life social issues within their community, grow professionally as individuals, and gain an insight into external organisations' work. It allows councils and businesses to utilise our students' diverse expertise, experience and insights.

Currently, Cambridgeshire and Essex County Councils are our primary partners, with other organisations joining early in 2022.

For more information on how to get involved, please email

We will be delivering the SHoKE initiative through four types of projects:

  • Impact 24: 24-hour ‘challenge events’ which involve multidisciplinary student teams at all levels coming together to identify potential solutions to societal challenges.
  • Student Consult: Management Consultancy activities delivered by teams of final year undergraduate and postgraduate students, supported by the NOUS Group of professional management consultants and ARU staff, to work on ‘real world’ problems experienced by partner organisations.
  • Open Innovation Workshops: Expansion of ARU's existing ‘sandpit’ events, bringing our academics, students and external partners together to co-create innovative multi-disciplinary collaborative research opportunities.
  • Knowledge Exchange Community: Bringing a diverse community of students together to contribute to a shared understanding of the benefits of knowledge exchange.

What our students think about Impact 24

What our partners think about Impact 24