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Thanks from our Award Winners

This page contains tributes from a number of recipients of Awards from the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales over the past few years who, in their own words, describe how their lives have been enhanced by their WLCOW Awards. The stories of what the Awards have meant to them and how they have helped them in their chosen career paths are truly inspiring. We hope that, in the future, with the additional funds we raised from the Silver Jubilee Appeal, we will be able to increase the number of Awards we make annually to the young people of Wales.

WLCoW JOURNALISM TRAVEL SCHOLARSHIP AWARD - JAKE HORTON ON HIS TRAVELS

Jake Horton’s Journalism Travel Scholarship Award provided him with the funds to cover a story which otherwise would have been far out of reach. He used his Award to travel to Arizona as having studied there he had become aware of the unique difficulties experienced within the Native American community when entering higher education. Far fewer Natives get into university and more drop out than any other demographic in America. Jake had always harboured the ambition to one day return and document the issue but never thought it would be possible, especially when having the funds of a student! After becoming aware of the fund offered to journalism master’s students by the Livery Company of Wales he jumped at the opportunity, and was lucky enough to be granted the award…

He boarded a plane to Phoenix, Arizona to film a three-minute piece on Native Americans in the American university system. He used Arizona as a case study - with the state having the second highest Native population in America it was symptomatic of the wider issue which was labelled a “national” crisis.

Only 13% of Native Americans have a bachelor's degree or higher, compared to 29% of the wider U.S. population. And only 39% of Native students who start a bachelor's degree complete it within six years, compared to 62% of white students.

During his two week stay in Arizona Jake spoke to as many people as possible and the answer was complicated - a history of educational suppression, campus cultural shock, financial strains from home, the weight of often being trail blazers, amongst other family pressures.

The topic had little previous coverage so the opportunity to produce a short film on a historic and far-reaching problem provided a valuable contribution to the existing literature, as well as an unforgettable experience in the process.

Dr Hywel Griffiths – Aberystwyth University Winner 2017

It was a pleasure and an honour to receive the Gold Award from the Livery Company. It was extremely gratifying to receive recognition for my academic work and also my creative work – work that has always been driven by the desire to contribute to life in Wales. I am extremely grateful to the Company for its support which will of great benefit to me whilst I am developing my career and continuing to work for the benefit of Wales.


Dr Sejal Bhatt – Royal Gwent Hospital Winner in 2016

I used the grant to support my educational commitments including the purchase of range of eyes, dummies of course, to hone my surgical skills with the precision, dexterity and decisiveness to ensure satisfactory patient outcomes.


Professor Tom Crick mbe – Cardiff Metropolitan University Winner in 2013

The Award came at a key time for me and provided the necessary platform and resources for the future. I had just chaired a review of the ICT curriculum for the Welsh Government, which has now lead into developing a new Digital Competence Framework for all schools in Wales, as well as being invited to chair the recently announced National Network for Excellence in Science & Technology, a £4M investment by the Welsh Government. My work in computer science education has been further recognised by being appointed mbe in the 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours List. I have no hesitation in highlighting the impact of the Gold Award on my career and would wholeheartedly support its future funding, so as to be able to develop the next generation of promising young people in Wales.


Chantal Spiteri – ZAD Cardiff – Winner in 2012

The Gold Award helped shape my career and its progress enormously. Getting advice and assistance from solicitors and accountants about running a company enabled me to reach out to some very high status organisations in Wales, namely Wales Millennium Centre and National Dance Company Wales, and broker relationships with them around my vision for a new ZooNation Hip Hop Academy in Wales. Both organisations have agreed to a partnership and opened the doors to a brand new ZAD Cardiff which will see weekly hip hop classes for ages 4 - 21 running at the Dance house at WMC. The Award not only helped me get my vision underway financially but, in some ways even more importantly, the validation from the Livery Company helped to build my confidence to not only dream but to set about achieving that dream.


Dr Andy Carson-Stevens – Cardiff University – Winner in 2011

Being the inaugural recipient of the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales Gold Award changed my life. The Gold Award supported my travel to undertake a course at Harvard University and an internship with the non-profit think-tank, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in Boston, USA. There I began to develop the courage to challenge the status quo in healthcare and build a network of collaborators. I purchased a laptop computer with award funds, and on it I successfully edited my first book which contained many chapters written by new colleagues made whilst travelling in North America.

Ashleigh Welch – Cardiff Metropolitan University - Travel Scholarship to Canada – 2017

My company – Syml (Welsh for ‘simple’) – supports small businesses in Wales by providing a simple alternative to managing their finances in-house. The Travel Scholarship enabled me to attend ‘Start-up Fest’ in Montreal, Canada. It was a four-day business festival that involved conferences, networking events, business surgeries and work stations. The conversations I had with both entrepreneurs and start-ups who attended the event have influenced my company and my clients’ businesses. Over the course of the festival, I was inspired with ideas for Syml’s purpose, branding and future corporate culture – areas I might have rushed into if I had not gone to the event.


Emily Groves – Aberystwyth University – Travel Scholarship to Norway – 2017

The Travel scholarship enabled me to pursue my research on the Kelp Alaria Esculenta in Norway. I transferred from Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia to Aberystwyth to study for a BSc in Marine and Freshwater Biology and am now undertaking research for my doctorate. Thereafter I hope to pursue a career in conservation in Wales.


Hannah George – Cardiff School of Journalism – Travel Scholarship – 2017

Receiving the Travel award has allowed me to push myself professionally and grow as a journalist. It gave me the confidence and opportunity to apply my local journalism skills gained in Cardiff in an unfamiliar setting and approach Welsh issues from a global perspective. I am now employed by Bloomberg in London.


Emmanuelle Gaillard – Bangor University – Travel Scholarship to Dublin – 2016

Emmanuelle Gaillard hails from France and has just completed her law degree with distinction at Bangor Law School. She used her scholarship to travel to Dublin for a two-week internship in a firm of solicitors to gain experience of the Common Law system.


James Walton – University of South Wales – Travel Scholarship to Austin, Texas – 2016

The experience gained gave me first-hand experience of a specialist manufacturing environment and the information gained will put me in a better position to answer the questions posed by young people in STEM workshops in local schools.


Dr Jonathon Jones – Swansea University – Travel Scholarship to Canada – 2016

My research concentrated on thermomechanical fatigue properties of nickel based super alloys. The Scholarship enabled me to present my research at a major international conference held in Canada, which brought together the world’s leading researchers in my field, and enabled the new thermography controlled thermomechanical fatigue testing capability to be recognised internationally.


Natalie Lubbock – University of South Wales – Travel Scholarship to Honduras, Coral Conservation – 2014

Winning the Travel Scholarship made it possible for me to travel to Honduras in Central America where I was able to conduct research and fieldwork for my MSc dissertation. I was able to join the expedition with Operation Wallacea and fulfil my dream. I am currently looking to apply my surveying skills to degraded seagrass meadows in Wales.


Lauren Jenkins – Cardiff School of Journalism – Travel Scholarship to Spain (Catalonia) 2014

The scholarship afforded me the time and money to meticulously research the politics of Catalan identity, a subject that has continued to dominate our headlines to this day. It was a valuable lesson in making contacts overseas and provided me with an impressive portfolio to present to future employers. I have very fond memories of my time in Barcelona that will stay with me for the rest of my career.

Adam Tuft – Airbus, Broughton

I have a passion for engineering and wing manufacture and the support given to me by the Livery Company and Airbus enables me to pursue the various training and qualifications needed to further my knowledge and broaden my skills.

Aamir Patel – Airbus, Broughton

Receiving the Welsh Livery award has opened further pathways for me with regard to the development of my career in Aerospace.

Lucy McPhee – Cardiff Music School Bursary – 2017

As an emerging composer, without this bursary, I would never have been able to
take part in the Vale of Glamorgan Festival or in the Peter Reynolds Composer
Studio. These opportunities enabled me to work with the Grand Band Ensemble
from New York and to create global contacts.


Glain Dafydd – WLCOW/Sickle Award – 2016

With the award I was able to attend a one-to-one session with French harp master Germaine Lorenzini in Lyon, France. Glain won the Instrumental Blue Ribbon – one of the most prestigious Awards – at the National Eisteddfod in 2016. She also gained distinction in her final degree from the Royal College of Music in London.


Lizzie Lovell-Jones – National Children’s Orchestra – 2015

The award enabled Lizzie to attend the National Children’s Orchestra courses in
2015. ‘The music was demanding and very enjoyable and I have learnt so much
from this wonderful organisation.’


Steffan Llewelyn – WLCOW Canolfan Gerdd William Mathias Award

In March 2017 at the age of 13, Steffan was one of the youngest award winners at Canolfan Gerdd William Mathias which enabled him to continue his musical education.


James Gareth Davies – University of Birmingham – 2014

The grant from the Worshipful Livery Company of Wales enabled me to complete an MA in International Cultural Heritage Management at Durham university in 2014. My MA thesis was on ‘Onsite Digital Heritage Interpretation at World Heritage Sites: Current uses and future possibilities’. I am now one of six people that decide on which projects get heritage lottery funding in Wales.