Student wins Undergraduate Student of the Year competition

Strathclyde Business School student Kirsten Alexander-McGarry was named Management Undergraduate of the Year in the Target Jobs Undergraduate of the Year awards on April 21 in London's Canary Wharf.

Kirsten, who is in her third year and studying International Business with Modern Languages, said she was 'over the moon' at being named a winner at these prestigious annual awards. Kirstin's prize was presented to her by writer and TV presenter Konnie Huq.

There were 12 awards up for grabs, including Future CFO, Future Business Leader and the One to Watch, alongside the more industry-focused categories such as Computer Science, Engineering and Management.

Each of the awards was sponsored by a prominent graduate recruiter — ACCA, Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, E.ON, FDM, First Names Group, Gazprom, Laing O’Rourke, L'Oréal and Rolls-Royce — all offering fantastic prizes for the winners, including paid internships, trips abroad and meetings with senior executives.

Over 3,400 undergraduate students from universities across the country submitted applications for one of the 12 awards and, of these, 1,050 made it through the assessment process. This consisted of three stages, including 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.

Kirsten said, "The application process was a long one but I enjoyed every stage of it. A long list was handed to the company sponsoring the award - Enterprise Rent-a-Car - who then viewed our applications and test results and drew up a short list of the top 50. As one of the top 50, I had a telephone interview with Ashley Hever, the director of talent acquisition for Enterprise Rent-a-Car and following that I was then invited to the company European Headquarters in Egham for an Assessment Day in March.

"After a nervous few days waiting to hear, I received a phone call from Ashley to inform me that I had made the top 10. I was absolutely thrilled to have been chosen to represent the University of Strathclyde on the national stage at the finals in Canary Wharf. The whole day was fantastic, Target Jobs pulled out all the stops to make it a wonderful day of celebrations.

"For each category, a representative of the company would take to the stage to announce the winner.Kha led Shahbo, Corporate Vice-President/Managing Director UK & Ireland of Enterprise Holdings Inc, presented the Management award.

"I was shocked and thrilled to hear my name read out in the Management category. It was an honour to be in a room with the brightest undergraduate talent in the UK and to be named one of the 12 winners.

"I am really passionate about Management and so to be named Management Undergraduate of the Year 2017 is such an honour."

As part of her prize, Kirsten will enjoy a summer placement with Enterprise Rent-a-Car which will include a week in the USA, experiencing all aspects of the business, from customer service to marketing, and finance to sales.

Executive Dean of Strathclyde Business School, Professor David Hillier, said, "Kirsten should be very proud of herself - this is a great achievement and everyone at the business school is delighted for her. Her success is thoroughly deserved."

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

More information on the winners can be found at

Published: 25 April 2017

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