Skip to main content

Student successes at national employability awards

16 March 2022

Three awards winners stand in front of a sign in Cardiff Business School
Georgia Coombs, Samantha Best and Rakshanda Khaunte all took home employability awards this year

Cardiff Business School students have been recognised for their work placement and internship success at the National Undergraduate Employability (NUE) Awards.

Georgia Coombs and Wiktoria Janiak, both students on our Business Management programme, were nominated for the Best Intern Award, with Georgia winning the final prize. Rakshanda Khaunte, fourth year Business Management student, was awarded Best Student Contribution to a Small to Medium-sized Employer.

The winners were selected for the outstanding contributions they made to their host companies.

Student Georgia Coombs accepting a cheque for winning an award at National Undergraduate Employability Awards 2022
Georgia Coombs won Best Intern 2022 at the National Undergraduate Employability awards

Georgia, who completed her internship at Yoello as a marketing executive said: “It was an overwhelming but amazing experience when I first won the award. It has brought me great pride and made me realise how hard I worked within a very challenging time for students. It was great to be recognised for that.”

The awards ceremony itself was a great experience, meeting like-minded people and speaking with employers was a great opportunity to broaden my network. It was also inspiring to hear other people’s stories and experiences within employability.

Georgia Coombs, Best Intern 2022

During her internship, Georgia quadrupled engagement across the company’s social media channels, including Instagram and LinkedIn. She also designed and implemented a new internal company awards which helped to build the company culture and increased team-wide knowledge sharing.

“I would highly recommend any business students undertake work experience. It’s so important to have experience on your CV when trying to secure graduate schemes and jobs. The employment market is becoming more and more competitive, but by having work experience you have already put yourself well ahead of others.

“Working in a professional environment provides you with so many different types of skills in such a short space of time. From managing a team to pitching ideas, the skills I learned at Yoello will always stay with me throughout my professional career.”

Best Student Contribution to a SME

Rakshanda Khaunte took home her award for her contribution to B:Live, a tourism company offering e-Bike tours in India. She is the second winner of the Best Student Contribution to a SME from Cardiff Business School, with William Partridge taking home the inaugural award in 2020.

During Rakshanda’s time with the company, she lead influencer marketing campaigns, created videos, organised photoshoots and supported new business pitches. She also implemented a programme of roadshows which contributed to £20,000 of revenue per month.

Rakshanda Khaunte winning an award at the National Undergraduate Employability Awards
Rakshanda Khaunte won Best Student Contribution to a Small to Medium-sized Employer 2022 at the National Undergraduate Employability Awards

Reflecting on her win, Rakshanda said: “It is such an honour to have received this award as recognition for the hard work I put in during my year in placement. As an international student and a woman of colour, receiving this external recognition has been such a confidence boost. I’m so proud of myself and all the other students for our resilience and the work we put in throughout the uncertain times.

The awards ceremony was an excellent chance for us to network with some incredible individuals from the industry and to meet like-minded students from various universities. Being able to represent Cardiff University alongside my peers, Georgia and Wiktoria, was an honour.

Rakshanda Khaunte, Best Student Contribution to a Small to Medium-Sized Employer 2022

“I would 100% recommend other students undertake a placement. It has by far been the most rewarding experience at university for me. The kind of practical knowledge and understanding you gain from the hands-on experience is invaluable.”

A remarkable achievement

On behalf of Cardiff Business School, I would like to offer our warmest congratulations to Georgia, Wiktoria and Rakshanda on their nominations and achievements at this year’s awards. This year’s success means that Cardiff Business School students have won 7 national NUE awards since 2018. To compete so successfully at the national level is a remarkable achievement.

Professor Rachel Ashworth Dean and Head of School

This success is testament to the way that our students eagerly engage in our placement and internship programmes, and the significant impact they make within their sponsor organisations in such a short space of time.

“It also reflects the excellent support and advice provided by our Employability team.”

Alex Hicks, Placements Manager at Cardiff Business School said: “Here in the Business School, we are very proud that two of the three national award winners come from Cardiff University. The awards are a great way of recognising and celebrating the success of our placement students and the positive impact that they have on organisations all over the world.”

Now in its thirteenth year, the NUE Awards reward and celebrate the outstanding achievements of employers, students and universities in undergraduate work experience across the UK.

Cardiff Business School Awards

Georgia and Rakshanda were also winners at the recent Cardiff Business School Awards, taking home the awards for Intern of the Year and Best Student Contribution to a Small to Medium-Sized Employer respectively.

Samantha Best in the Postgraduate Teaching Centre holding an award for Intern of the Year
Samantha Best won Intern of the Year at the Business School Awards

Also taking home an award at the Business School Awards was Samantha Best, who won Intern of the Year, for her contribution during her placement at SAP as a Services and Sales Associate. During her time as an intern, Samantha achieved a range of successful outputs, including implementing new processes, improving cross-team collaboration, and generating over 80 different contracts with values up to £12m.

Placement hosts SAP said: “Samantha has been an outstanding candidate from the start of her internship. She rapidly understood the processes and tools required to support the Sales and Services business, and was not afraid to take on any challenge and own it.”

Placement opportunities at Cardiff Business School

Cardiff Business School offers our students advice via dedicated careers and placement staff, with short periods of work flexible around timetables, summer placements, and year-long professional placements.

Contact Alex Hicks, Cardiff Business School’s Placements Manager for more information on the opportunities we offer.

Alex Hicks

Alex Hicks

Placement Manager

+44 (0)29 2087 6565

Share this story

Find out more about the ways in which your organisation can work with our students, including placements and live projects.