Leeds Metropolitan University wins MPI Young Achievers Award


A team from Leeds Metropolitan University has been crowned the winner of the MPI UK and Ireland Chapter 2012 Young Achievers Award, supported by the Switzerland Convention and Incentive Bureau (SCIB).

Hosted at the Barbican and attended by around 100 meeting industry professionals, the event, which is now in its 3rd year, saw five teams each represent a Swiss destination and go head-to-head in a live bid presentation based on a real-life agency event brief.

As a qualification process for the Young Achievers Award, nine universities were asked to prepare a video that answered two questions; why you have chosen a career in the meetings industry and how can MPI help you achieve your career goals? From this the five best teams were chosen to go forward to the final – Dublin Institute of Technology, Sheffield Hallam University, University of Surrey, University of Westminster and Leeds Metropolitan University.


The Leeds Metropolitan University team, made up of Annie Metcalfe, Steven Wade and Judith Robinson, came out on top following their bid from the city of Montreux. The winning team not only walked away with the prestigious Swiss Cow Trophy but their efforts were rewarded with a trip to Montreux as they look to capitalise on their good work and move into professional life with the help of the MPI UK & Ireland Chapter’s student resources.

Claudio Zemp, manager United Kingdom and Ireland for the Switzerland Convention and Incentive Bureau, comments: “We have been incredibly proud to sponsor these awards. I think it is very impressive that the teams put together their presentations in a week and they should be congratulated for their hard work.”

The award was created in 2010 to discover and recognise new talent, and gives students the opportunity to showcase their skills in front of key industry figures.  The teams were judged by a panel of five senior meetings industry professionals, led by Paul Cook (Planet Planit) as well as Amanda Edgecumbe (Powwow), John Denham (Vantage Point), Richard Parker (Zibrant) and Chris Clarke (p&mm).

Richard Parker says: “For the third year in succession I was impressed by the quality, passion and creativity of the students.  The platform that the SCIB, MPI and associated partners provides with the Young Achievers Award is an invaluable source of networking and provides unrivalled reach to a wide audience of industry professionals. I love being involved as a judge, it’s a privilege and annual reminder of what a great industry we belong to.”

John Denham commented: “This is the third time I have been on the judging panel and the quality of presentations gets better and better. I congratulate all those who took part.  For those who didn’t win, even participating in this event will look good on your CV.”

Chris Clarke says: “I was delighted to be involved with the Young Achievers Award this year in the capacity of panel judge. It was enlightening and particularly gratifying to see that the future of our industry is in pretty good hands if this year’s contestants are anything to go by.  The fact that we deliberated for so long over the final results was testament enough to prove that even with only one week’s preparation the research and hard work paid off – the level of content and presentation was of a really high standard.”

Samme Allen, MPI UK & Ireland Chapter President, comments: “All the finalists must be commended for their fantastic efforts. Those in attendance were rewarded with a glimpse into the future of the industry. The competition was closely fought but the presentation by Leeds Metropolitan University showed a deep understanding of the brief which allowed them to give a confident presentation to the judges. We wish them, and all the finalists, the very best of luck as they move into careers within the meetings industry.”

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