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UCLan student wins national events industry award

You’re hired! UCLan student wins 'Apprentice' style national events industry award

A University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) student has been crowned the winner of a national events industry competition landing a job with a global company in the process.

Final year event management student Joe Oakley won the top prize at the ‘Eventice 2017’, an ‘Apprentice’ style national competition open to all UK events students designed to find the very best up and coming talent in the industry.

As the winner, Joe has been offered a job in the global sales team of international event management company Easyfairs.

The 20-year-old, from Thornton-Cleveleys, said: “It’s an incredible feeling to have won and I’m not quite sure it’s sunk in yet.  It was an intense few days and I initially entered just to gain experience so to win is amazing and great recognition of the hard work I’ve put into the last three years.”

Joe was one of 17 finalists who all completed a series of tasks over three days before the overall winners were announced.  The students took on a variety of tasks from creating a video of the Olympic Park to promote it to the tourist and team building market, a two-hour Twitter takeover at International Confex to help promote the exhibitors, creating a menu for an event at The School of Work and then on to designing an exhibition stand for a client to promote themselves at an exhibition.

It was an intense few days and I initially entered just to gain experience so to win is amazing and great recognition of the hard work I’ve put into the last three years.

The 17 finalists were narrowed down to a final six who then had to give a ten minute presentation in front of a packed seminar theatre and a panel of industry experts.

Joe is no stranger to success after being part of a winning six-strong UCLan team at the 2016 Creative Disruptors Awards.  The team won Best Student Event in in recognition of the students’ successful ‘Breakout’ challenge, which they organised as part of a course live events module that required students to plan, deliver and evaluate a safe and sustainable live event. 

Rod Train, BA (Hons) Event Management Course Leader, congratulated Joe.  He said: “This is an amazing result and I am really proud of him.  I’m pleased that Joe used all he has learnt on his degree to such good effect in the competition.  I am just so, so chuffed with what Joe has achieved.”

Liz Sinclair, Director of ESP Recruitment who has been running the competition for seven years in partnership with Bluehat Group, commented: “The level of the work produced was a lot higher than would be expected of a graduate.

“Sometimes the students doing event management degrees don’t always get to hear about all sectors of the events industry, so this competition really broadens their horizons and shows them that there are great career opportunities in sectors such as the exhibition or exhibition services sector.”

The final took place at the annual events industry conference International Confex with two other finalists being offered jobs at the Bluehat Group and Identity Group. 

Pictured: Joe Oakley (left) with Easyfairs Global Brand Director Paul Macdonald

UCLan is a Headline sponsor for the Lancashire Tourism Awards 2017

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