Alumni Awards 2018 winners

We recognised inspirational former students at our annual Alumni Awards ceremony, held in Chelmsford on 29 November.

Since 2016, our Vice Chancellor’s Outstanding Alumni Awards have congratulated graduates who've gone on to achieve success in their respective fields, or who have made outstanding contributions to society.

This year we received nominations in five categories, including from staff, students and fellow alumni. Our judging panel, which included influential former students as well as senior Anglia Ruskin staff, decided on the winners.

And the winners are...

Alumni Service to Society Award

Winner: Kirsty Shakespeare
BSc (Hons) Zoology, 2008

Since graduating, Kirsty’s work teaching environmental and sustainability education has allowed her to engage more than half a million people around the world. She aims to foster a love and respect for our natural environments and encourage us to take steps towards a more sustainable future.

Alumni Entrepreneur of the Year Award

Winner: Dr Carsten Mahrenholz
MBA, 2008

With a background in biology and chemistry, Carsten co-founded the COLDPLASMATECH GmbH team in 2015 and became a pioneer in plasma medicine. The team has developed a medical device for treating chronic wounds and killing multiresistant bacteria.

Alumni Contribution to Culture Award

Winner: Julia Woolf
MA in Children’s Book Illustration, 2015

Julia will have her third author/illustrated book published next year along with several books which she has illustrated. One of her illustrations, Fox in the Forest, was chosen by architects as inspiration for a school building in south London, which subsequently won the RIBA London Award for 2018.

Young Alumni of the Year Award

Joint winners: Tanya Porter and Mateo Oxley
DHE Registered Nurse, 2013
BA (Hons) Popular Music, 2013
This award is given to alumni who are under 35 years of age.

Tanya was shortlisted as a finalist in the Royal College of Nursing awards 2018 thanks to her work at Addenbrooke’s Hospital as a specialist OPAT nurse, where she helps to develop and expand the service alongside both the senior nursing and medical OPAT team.

Meanwhile, music graduate Mateo has enjoyed a varied and successful stage career including several productions at The Royal National Theatre. This year he made his film debut in WW2 period drama Magpie.

Alumni Lifetime Achievement Award

Winner: Professor Amare Desta
BSc (Hons) Computer Science, 1997

Due to his passion for learning, Amare was chosen as one of the five most outstanding learners in the East Anglia region and awarded a prize by the UK Shadow Secretary of State for Education. He's also Co-founder and Chair of the Global Knowledge Exchange Network (GKEN) and a Director of the Ethiopian Doctoral & Masters Academy (EDMA).

Congratulations to all our winners and nominees.

There were some extremely talented and inspirational people shortlisted for awards, and we’re very proud of all of them, and the part we have played in their success. Their stories show our current students what they themselves can achieve
Professor Roderick Watkins
Acting Vice Chancellor, Anglia Ruskin University