School of Economics

Undergraduate of the Year Awards grand final result

Now in its ninth year, the TARGETjobs Undergraduate of the Year Awards continues to recognise and celebrate the best student talent in the UK. Congratulations to Zara Loughridge for her win.

Instead of leaving the library and wrapping up their studies for the weekend, 120 excited students gathered at East Wintergarden in Canary Wharf last Friday afternoon for the announcement of the winners of the TARGETjobs Undergraduate of the Year annual competition.

There were 12 prestigious awards up for grabs, including Future CFO, Innovation and the One to Watch, alongside more industry-focused categories such as Computer Science, IT and Physics, Engineering and Management. The Mathematics, Economics and Finance Undergraduate of the Year award, sponsored by Gazprom, was won by our very own Zara Loughridge!

Each of the awards was sponsored by a prominent graduate recruiter — ACCA, Barclays, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, E.ON, FDM, First Names Group, Gazprom, Laing O’Rourke, L'Oréal, Marks & Spencer, Rolls-Royce, and #iwill and Teach First — and all offered fantastic prizes for the winners, including paid internships, trips abroad and meetings with senior executives. The competition continues to inspire and engage thousands of students throughout the UK.

Applications were submitted by 3,336 undergraduate students from universities across the country for one of the 12 awards and, of these, 582 made it through the assessment process. This consisted of three stages: an application and questionnaire; an online assessment with situational, numerical and inductive reasoning tests; and finally, an in-person assessment with the respective award sponsor.

The top ten students for each award were then invited to attend the grand final where the winners were announced. The 120 finalists were present at the London awards ceremony on the 20 April – an inspiring afternoon of networking and celebration. This year’s winners were lucky enough to be presented with their award by the ceremony host: television presenter Rachel Riley.

Both the finalists and the winners showcased an impressive range of skills, experiences and achievements, but what makes an Undergraduate of the Year? A sample of the incredible attributes of the winners include: a weightlifter, a founder of a flower delivery company, a recipient of the Diana Legacy Award, an editor of an award-winning science magazine and member of the National Youth Choir of Great Britain. There were many volunteers too, such as a STEM ambassador, and a volunteer working with St John Ambulance. While some have worked and volunteered abroad, others have set up their own businesses or become ambassadors/leaders for excellent causes.

‘It felt like they had confused me with someone else when they first read my name out, because when I applied for the award I never dreamed I’d get this far!’ said the winner of the Management Undergraduate of the Year Award, Holly Hetherington. ‘You have to be in it to win it, as Rachel Riley told us at the awards ceremony.’

Holly’s advice for anyone thinking of applying for next year's awards?

‘I have learnt so much from this process. I came into it wanting to gain experience of the graduate recruitment process and came away with so much more! I have gained so much confidence, friends across the country, several new business connections and a hefty glass award, all of which I could never have dreamed of getting when I applied in January.’

GTI director, Simon Rogers said, ‘The 12 winners have achieved so much already, and all demonstrate dedication, ambition and generosity, making them stand out from their peers. They are a testimony to the exceptional young talent the UK has to offer today.’


A full list of the winners can be found below.

Undergraduate of the Year Award winners