Two projects from Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) have been shortlisted for the Reimagine Education Awards 2016.
QConsult Commercial, formerly QConsult supported by J.P. Morgan, has been nominated for the Nurturing Employability category after being set up to place high-calibre QMUL students from lower-income families into mini-consultancy projects in east London businesses.
The Virtual Lab, a platform that allows students to learn lab skills in bioengineering and the life sciences has also been nominated for the e-Learning Innovation category.
The Awards promote themselves as ‘the global awards for innovative higher education pedagogies enhancing learning and employability’.
Abi Sharma, Acting Head of Careers and Enterprise, said: "We're delighted to be shortlisted. The QConsult Commercial scheme is one of five work experience schemes run by the QMUL Careers and Enterprise team. Since the programme started in September 2015, it has transformed the employability of over 100 students taking part and engaged east London growth sector businesses in a really innovative way.
“Last year J.P. Morgan supported the programme generously and constructively – through staff mentoring and board room space as well as through vital funds. This year, QMUL has invested in the scheme and we are starting to shape it to fit into the QMUL model, through which even more students can benefit from the valuable work experience it offers.”
The success of QConsult was recognised earlier this year when the project
won the Employability Initiative category at The Guardian University Awards 2016.
The Reimagine Education Awards ceremony and gala dinner will take place on 6 December 2016 at the Reimagine Education Conference, to be held in Philadelphia, and the overall winner will take home a $50,000 cash prize.
Dr Tina Chowdhury, Senior Lecturer in Regenerative Medicine at the School of Engineering and Materials Science, said: “I’m delighted The Virtual Lab has be nominated for the Reimagine Education Awards. The Virtual Lab is an interactive environment that helps young people to learn lab skills and understand research-led topics in bioengineering. Students have been very positive and I am excited that The Virtual Lab can be used by anyone at QMUL at any time."
During the 2015-16 period, 1,200 QMUL students from different disciplines in engineering and the life sciences practised methods in The Virtual Lab before real lab sessions.
Exam marks improved significantly as a result, from 35-78 per cent in 2010-11 to 55-90 per cent in 2015-16.
The platform has also been adopted by UCL, Eindhoven University and the Open University in collaboration with a technology company Solvexx Solutions and has been extended across three Schools at QMUL.
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