Principal’s prizes reward student accomplishments

Eight Edinburgh students have been recognised for their inspirational achievements.

They have been awarded Sir William Darling Memorial Prizes – given to members of the University community who have excelled through their conduct, example or successes.

The winners of the annual awards were chosen by Edinburgh Principal Professor Peter Mathieson.

They were presented at the Principal’s Welcome Ceremony in McEwan Hall, an event to mark the start of the next academic year and welcome new students.

Prize winners

African & International Development masters student Muturi Njeri receives an award for raising exposure of Africa through his photography and event organisation. Muturi is one of the University’s Mastercard Foundation Scholars.

Physics postgraduate student Estifaa Zaid is recognised for founding a project that provides education and empowerment tutoring for Syrian refugees in Edinburgh. She has also served as President of the University’s Islamic society.

Third year Politics, Economics and Social History student Chloe Dickson receives an award for her fencing achievements. She won gold at the Commonwealth championships in 2018 and remains undefeated in Scottish Student Sport fencing over the past two years.

Fourth year law student Iona Bonaventura has been chosen for her work to improve the student experience.

Throughout her time at Edinburgh she has supported first year law students as they start university life. Iona has also served as president of the Law Student’s Council for the last year and developed a new student class representation system.  

University Challenge

Edinburgh’s victorious University Challenge team have also been awarded a prize.

The four-strong team of Robbie Campbell Hewson (Mathematics), Max Fitz-James (Biology), Matt Booth (Mathematics) and Marco Malusà (Philosophy) beat Oxford University's St Edmund Hall by 155 points to 140 to become the first team from Scotland to win since 1984 and the first non-Oxbridge finalist in six years.


The Sir William Darling Memorial Prizes are awarded to students whose outstanding achievements during the past twelve months have provided inspiration to others, contributed to the enhancement of the reputation of the University, and highlighted the excellence of Edinburgh students. It is my privilege to present this year’s awards to these eight students.

Professor Peter MathiesonPrincipal and Vice-Chancellor, the University of Edinburgh

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