- The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. The organisation works in over 100 countries worldwide to build opportunity and trust for the UK through the exchange of knowledge and ideas between people and, in the process, contributes to the security and prosperity of the UK and the other countries involved. For more information, please visit: www.britishcouncil.org
- The annual International Student Awards are a major initiative, from the British Council, that shines the spotlight on international students and their contributions to life in the UK.
- This is the fourth year that Swansea University’s international students, who come to the UK for high quality education, new challenges and experiences, have been given public recognition for their extra-curricular achievements.
- In 2008 Business and Economics student, Shilin Wang, was named regional winner, Media and Communications student, Yin Qian, was named regional ‘runner-up’ and Richard Nyuur, from Ghana, was highly commended for his inspiring.
- In 2009, a ‘personal letter home’ from Akash Sehdev, one of the University’s Law and Business Studies students, was named one of Wales’s best.
- In 2010, Pavan Kumar Sriram and Jing Xu were both named ‘runners-up’ in the Wales finals.
- In 2011, Swansea University alumnus, Pavan Kumar Sriram, won the South East regional final and Swansea University Computer Science student, Kaushalya Kularatnam was named Wales ‘runner-up’.
Swansea alumnus in the spotlight
Pavan Kumar Sriram, an Erasmus Mundus student who graduated from Swansea University in 2010, has won the South East final in the Shine International Students Awards 2011 – a major initiative from the British Council.
To enter the competition Pavan wrote a letter to his aunt, in India, detailing his many ‘out-of-class’ achievements and his passion for student life in the UK. His letter, judged one of the best of more than 1,200 entered by students from 118 countries, was selected as one of twelve regional winners.
Pavan, originally from Bangalore, said: “Winning this prestigious Shine award, in the face of strong competition, has inspired me to continue to work with the local community to help motivate young people to gain the social and vocational skills that they need to achieve their personal dreams and ambitions.”
The Swansea alumnus started his Master of Science (MSc) in Computational Mechanics at Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya in Spain before moving to Swansea University in 2009. He graduated with a first class distinction and received the Dorothy Hodgkin’s award. He is currently studying for a PhD at ISVR, University of Southampton.
Pavan concluded: “As one of the top three universities in the UK for engineering, my experience of studying for an MSc at Swansea University was truly rewarding.
“It is a chapter of my life that I will always treasure. It gave me the confidence, knowledge and skills to pursue my academic studies and get involved with a wide range of other activities including Youth Venture – an organisation that I’ve recently set-up to help combat human trafficking and violence against women.”
Pavan received his £1,000 prize, commemorative trophy and certificate at the national awards ceremony in London. The winning entry is published online: http://blog.britishcouncil.org/2011/04/shine_awards_8/