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UCL graduate wins Posters in Parliament research prize

5 February 2016

Amanda Campbell, who graduated last year from the UCL Bartlett School of Architecture, has won first prize in a national competition for her research on a biodegradable tent for music festivals.

Amanda Campbell: Posters in Parliament winner

The annual competition, which took place on Tuesday 2 February, provides an opportunity for students to present their work, at the Houses of Parliament, to legislators and policy makers and to demonstrate they are part of a new generation of emerging researchers able to meet global challenges.

Amanda’s interdisciplinary research developed an environmentally sustainable alternative to abandoned temporary structures, such as festival tents, by engineering composites from biodegradable materials.

Amanda said: “It was a great opportunity to talk about my work and get feedback and advice. Overall it was an almost surreal experience which I really enjoyed and there is a huge sense of achievement going over previous work and portraying it visually on a poster and of course receiving the first prize award!”

More than 40 students and recent graduates presented their work – two of whom were from UCL. Alongside Amanda, Victoria Monroe (UCL Economics) presented her research on gender disparity in income.

The event is part of the British Conference of Undergraduate Research (BCUR) which gives undergraduates and recent graduates the opportunity to show that they have undertaken research at the cutting edge of their field.

UCL has set out plans for all degree courses to encourage students to carry out research. Over the last two years, the university has developed a model unique to UCL: the Connected Curriculum. At its core is the idea that intellectually curious students learn best when they experience first-hand the challenges and achievements of conducting research.

Amanda said: “It takes work out of just the academic sphere and into the real world, where arguably it is more inspiring and engaging. It also gives students an experience of where research can take them, demonstrating that all their hard work doesn’t have to end when their course does.” 

UCL President & Provost Michael Arthur said: “We have put huge emphasis on research-based education in our strategy and have been implementing this through the ‘Connected Curriculum’ initiative, so it is wonderful to see this being acknowledged at the national level and, best of all, through the hard work of our students. Very many congratulations – we are all very proud of Amanda’s achievements.”

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