UCEM Property Awards 2019: Meet the Alumni of the Year Award nominees
Posted on: 2019-10-09
In addition to the main Property Award, which goes to someone who has made an outstanding contribution to the property industry, we will be handing out awards for Academic Excellence and to the Alumni of the Year.
Five alumni have been nominated for the Alumni of the Year Award, which goes to a former UCEM student who has made an outstanding contribution in their early career towards creating a better Built Environment. Whoever wins will become just the fifth recipient of the prize since its inauguration in 2015. Here is more on our nominees, their career to date and their thoughts on being shortlisted…
2005-2007 – Diploma in Surveying Practice
2007-2010 – BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying
Daniel graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Quantity Surveying in 2011, having studied at UCEM whilst working as an Assistant Quantity Surveyor at Thomas and Adamson. Daniel went on to pass his RICS APC on his first attempt.
After six years, he moved to Turner & Townsend where he has taken on a number of roles including working on Kew Gardens (Temperate House). Daniel was then promoted to Associate Director and Lead Cost Manager on the new University of Northampton (£330m) campus which was recently successfully completed.
Daniel’s experience resulted in an opportunity in Sydney, Australia, where for the past two years he has taken on the role of New South Wales Education sector lead, working across projects valued in excess of $1bn. As well as project delivery, Daniel is on the Property Advisory Board for the University of Technology, Sydney, which helps steer the curriculum towards making it more industry-relevant and has undertaken a number of lectures for built environment students. He is also working to bring sustainability to the forefront of project design and budget in Australia.
He regularly assists in RICS and industry events, and in the future, plans to set up an Alumni event for UCEM in Sydney. Daniel was shortlisted for the RICS Surveyor of the year in 2015 (UK), for the RICS Australian Future Leader in 2019 and for the Australian QS of the year in 2018.
Daniel said: “I feel honoured and proud to be nominated and shortlisted alongside my peers, as well as being recognised for the hard work not just this year but throughout my career.
“Studying at UCEM provided me with the platform to achieve what I have achieved to date. At the time it was hard work and a lot of sacrifice as I was working as a trainee QS and undertaking the course, but gaining the experience whilst studying put me in a stronger position than other students that attended full-time university. Hard work and dedication pays off.
“It’s hard to actually put this in to words [what winning would mean to me] but to my friends and family who have been on the journey with me, winning would also be saying thank you to them.”
2009-2013 – BSc (Hons) Building Surveying
Pete graduated in 2013 with a First Class Honours degree in Building Surveying, winning an award for the highest mark achieved in his year, having studied at UCEM whilst working full-time. Pete is now a Senior Associate Director at Trident Building Consultancy, heading up the Manchester office.
As well as being a key fee earner of the business, Pete also undertakes a wide variety of professional building surveying and project management services to commercial, office, industrial and residential properties for a wide range of landlord and tenant clients. Having only joined Trident in May 2018, Pete has quickly progressed his career within the company, inspiring his team in Manchester and making some substantial improvements to the office.
As well as acting as an APC Counsellor to his team’s assistant building surveyors, he is also responsible for business development. Pete specialises in acquisition building surveys, design and specification, dilapidations, project management and a wide range of professional surveying services. He also acts as a Mentor for the CIOB.
Pete is currently working on some large-scale interesting projects which include new build developments, office refurbishments, retail refurbishments schemes and hotel surveys and defect reports. Other day-to-day instructions include dilapidation schedules, planned maintenance and schedules of condition to a variety of commercial and retail properties. His work was recognised through being shortlisted as a Construction Role Model at this week’s UK Construction Week event.
Pete said: “I feel very proud to be nominated for this award, as I have a strong connection to UCEM having completed my distance learning degree with the institution over four years. At the time of application, UCEM was the only provider which offered a building surveying degree via distance learning which suited all of my needs and requirements, therefore I am honoured to be nominated for this award for Alumni of the Year following the completion of my studies after a lot of hard work. This, therefore, means a lot to me.
“I always look back on my time and experience with UCEM as a great and memorable experience. During the four-year period completing my studies, I was also working full-time, got married during the second year of my degree and we had our little girl in the third year; therefore, it was a very busy and often stressful time, but when I reflect on this time I have all good memories and I am very glad that I decided to complete my studies with UCEM. My little girl even came on a couple of road trips with us when I drove to the revision days in York and Reading and enjoyed the hotels and sight-seeing!
“It would be amazing to win the award, and I would be very honoured to win the award several years after completing my degree and leaving UCEM. I have kept in contact with UCEM since graduating from taking part in interviews and photos for the UCEM Prospectus, to participating in student mentor programmes. I feel very privileged to have been nominated for this award and am very grateful. Winning the award would also bring back great memories and would be a great achievement recognising my studies and career.”
2008-2013 – BSc (Hons) Estate Management
On leaving school and studying law at college, Laura worked full-time whilst ‘training on the job’ to become an Easement Officer. Proving a natural in her field and completing her Estate Management degree at UCEM, she was promoted to Senior Easement Officer.
Career progression led Laura to Savills, where she became the firm’s Capital Programme Assistant. Recognising a gap in the legal market, she carved out a role for herself as New Connections Manager, responsible for managing the new connections business within the utility team and working with electricity and gas connection providers to procure the legal rights.
With extensive skills in negotiation and a background in feasibility studies, land acquisition and lease administration, Laura decided to start Connections Legal Management (CLM) in 2014, aged just 27. Recently celebrating its fifth birthday, Laura has grown CLM in volume and reputation, breaking through numerous industry boundaries. Specialising in electric and gas connections to developments of all sizes, CLM acts as a link between the electricity networks and/or gas transporters, the landowner/developer, solicitors and the contractors (ICP’s).
Laura has built an experienced team of 13 professionals who collectively have become the go-to land rights service provider in the UK. CLM is proud to have worked on some of the most prestigious and valuable sites in the UK under Laura’s entrepreneurial spirit. Laura has been selected by the City of London Law Society to sit on the Substation Lease review panel and 2019 also saw her nominated for Businesswoman of the Year, UK Construction Week Role Model, and for the Mercury Business Awards in the categories of Business Person of the Year and Small Business of the Year.
Laura said: “I am utterly delighted with this nomination! I am a very proud alumni of UCEM and champion its merits at every opportunity. To be nominated for this accolade fills me with pride as it really does not feel that long ago since I studied with the institution. To have reached such a noteworthy milestone in my career is incredibly humbling and motivating at the same time.
“I reflect on my time studying with UCEM with great fondness. There were many logistics to manage when I was a student, as I was also working full-time, yet the course structure and support meant I was not disadvantaged in the slightest. The course is still hugely relevant to my day-to-day work and I often refer to teachings and examples from my UCEM days.
“The resources and team at UCEM are second to none and I encourage anyone considering a similar career path to explore a relevant course with UCEM. My degree in Estate Management was the foundation of not only my knowledge and experience, but also enabled me to carve a niche business, which now employs 14 people who are all progressing in their careers in land rights too.
“It would mean the world to win 2019 Alumni of the Year. I feel incredibly proud to share my UCEM journey as it shows just what can be achieved with focus, motivation and an outstanding establishment such as UCEM. By working with the resources you do have you can achieve great things. One of my favourite quotes is from Steve Jobs, ‘The only way to do great work is to love what you do’; UCEM helped me find what I love to do and for that I will be eternally grateful.”
2009-2011 – Postgraduate Diploma in Surveying – Construction
Nathan graduated with a Distinction from the Postgraduate Diploma in Surveying he studied with UCEM, following his undergraduate degree in Economics and Business. Since joining Turner & Townsend’s graduate programme, Nathan has risen to become one of their youngest ever Directors.
In 2015 his achievements were recognised by Constructing Excellence when he was awarded ‘Achiever of the Year’ with the judges making particular note of his passion and dedication to the industry. Nathan has worked across the Built Environment, advising many different infrastructure clients, the wider industry and government. Examples include the London 2012 Olympics and the Thames Estuary 2100 project.
Nathan has held multiple external board positions helping promote and drive forward the industry with the following organisations: RICS Matrics; Generation 4 Change (G4C); the Innovation & Growth Team (IGT) 2050 Group; the London First ‘Future Leaders’ Panel; and, the Construction 2025 Futures Panel. As such he has been fortunate to be part of several industry change initiatives, such as the Construction 2025 report and the IGT report.
Nathan is currently the Director of Cost & Commercial for infrastructure across the Midlands region at Turner & Townsend. He mentors younger members of staff and takes a proactive role in encouraging correct behaviours to ensure the industry’s future leaders are as passionate about driving change and improvement as he is.
He said: “It is fantastic to be nominated! Being shortlisted is a great recognition of the hard work that has shaped not only the last year but my career as a whole through advising some of the UK’s largest infrastructure projects and programmes in the UK. I am proud to be working within the UK infrastructure market shaping the future of our country. Being nominated shows a recognition and promotion of delivering great outcomes, on a sector, people and personal level.
“It has been great to see some of the wider talent in the industry also being shortlisted. It shows the strength and depth of the next generation of leaders emerging from UCEM and that our industry will continue to grow and move forward in the future.
“I found my time at UCEM very rewarding. I am proud to have studied somewhere that proactively encouraged collaboration and challenged students to not only learn and reflect on the past models of delivery but also to look for innovation and anticipate changes required in the future to keep our industry great.
“I still speak to some of the people on my course today; again a positive reflection of collaboration across sectors and the promotion of the importance of building connections in the industry from your very first day in your career.
“Considering the high quality of the talent in the shortlist it would be a great honour to win the Alumni of the Year award.
“Turner & Townsend have been a great supporter, I am very fortunate to have worked with some brilliant colleagues and clients who have shaped and driven forward my career since I started as a graduate. Winning would be a great milestone in my career as I look forward to the future and continuing to make a difference.”
2009-2012 – Postgraduate Diploma in Conservation of the Historic Environment
Judi was awarded a PgDip in Conservation of the Historic Environment by UCEM in 2012 and now works for social impact developers Capital & Centric as Director of Operations at Regeneration Brainery. Capital & Centric is a company passionate about delivering social impact in all their projects and Judi’s role is to get young people from a range of backgrounds inspired about a career in the property and regeneration sector through week-long immersive courses where they can try out property and regeneration first hand.
Judi is driven by her desire to attract the most talented people from a diverse range of backgrounds who can create better and richer places to live, work and play. Judi is passionate about engaging with local communities and has undertaken many projects to regenerate the town of Colwyn Bay in North Wales. One such building project was highly commended at the RICS Awards for Building Conservation and now has a sustainable and secure future at the heart of the local community. She also manages the North Wales Preservation Trust with whom she is working to restore an Art Deco building on the ‘at risk’ list, transforming it into a shared workspace and community café.
She commented: “I’m really pleased to be nominated for this award. The most pleasing aspect of the nomination is how it come about from a contact of mine who recognised what I do and felt I was deserving of being nominated.
“Studying with UCEM changed my life. I have been on a very varied journey and studying with UCEM was the pinnacle as it changed the direction of my career for the better.
“Winning the award would endorse the work I am doing. It would empower me to keep going and continue doing what I am doing which is social and value-led projects so it is nice to be recognised for that.”
Congratulations to all our nominees, and best of luck for tomorrow! Follow our social media channels on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter for more as we build up to and cover the UCEM Property Awards 2019.