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Seven-year strategy: Megan

14 December 2016

On 29 November 2016, the University of Bristol launched its seven-year strategy. It outlines the University’s vision for educational innovation that will nurture skilled, adaptable and resilient graduates; graduates like Megan. Megan is studying Psychology with Innovation and is in the first cohort of students accepted into the new Centre for Innovation. Megan was invited to speak at the strategy launch event, here is what she had to say about what drew her to Bristol University’s Innovation programme.

Good evening everyone.Firstly, I'd like to say how proud I am to be standing here as a student of Bristol University. Bristol's historic reputation and global ranking were factors I was very impressed with when considering my University pathway. The calibre of both the students and staff are like none other where academia is balanced with an active social scene and sporting opportunities. This, combined with Bristol's open-minded and vibrant community, allows creativity to flourish amongst students.

I would like to tell you a little about my journey that led me to Bristol and why I feel so excited and privileged to be a student on the first intake of Bristol’s pioneering innovation joint-discipline course. A type of course which is not offered at any other university in the UK. As a result of going to school in Singapore and completing the charitable element of my Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award, I designed, professionally commissioned and sold handmade clay money pots. The design,  inspired by Singapore's multicultural identity, embodied the Malay, Chinese and Indian cultures that have made Singapore what it is today. I was lucky enough to have had a very positive response to my pots and donated the profit to the Kick Sarcoma Foundation in Singapore. I then patented my design and set up a small registered business, which is still ongoing today. Therefore, this unique course seemed ideal for me, as I was always interested in psychology but combined with innovation it allows me to understand how I can apply the psychology learnt in real world situations and business ideas.  

The government announced on Monday that they would be investing 4.7 billion pounds over a four-year period to innovation and science in the UK. Bristol has had a long standing in recognising the importance of innovation through research, and more recently, within educational delivery. Their ground-breaking new interdisciplinary innovation courses are carving the way for this new strategy which you have heard from Hugh; embedding innovation, enterprise and entrepreneurship throughout the University.With 11 different core subjects from psychology to physics and students joining to collaborate, this mixed ethos encourages teamwork and compromise and, most importantly, opens your eyes to a wealth of fields you would otherwise be unaware of. This automatically allows for different perspectives, different solutions and, therefore, greater creativity. I believe Bristol's solid academic excellence balanced with a strong encouragement and open-mindedness for design, partnered with a long-standing collaboration with local business makes Bristol the perfect platform for this evolutionary new course. 

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