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News article

Student-led symposium brings business leaders together to explore responses to Covid-19

Published: 29 April 2022

  •   Business
  •    Students
6 people on Teams online call
Students from York St John University’s Business School and Queen Mary University of London led a symposium which brought business leaders and aspiring entrepreneurs together.  

The event titled ‘Your future in business: Working in the Post-pandemic World’ offered students from both universities the opportunity to gain real-life experience in organising a complex event and develop employability skills such as problem solving, team management and digital literacy.  

Keynote speakers included influential business figures Mark Mullen, the founder and CEO of Atom Bank, and HSBC’s Head of Strategy, Ashish Sharma, who were on hand to answer questions from aspiring students.  

Attendees received insightful feedback and professional guidance from expert judges as they competed for an Entrepreneurial Presentation prize. Judges included lecturer at Coventry University Dr Etieno Enang , alongside senior lecturer in Strategy at the University of Bedfordshire, Dr Stella XU. 

The symposium was made possible thanks to funding awarded by the Association for Learning Development in Higher Education (ALDinHE) to senior lecturer in business information technology at York St John University Dr Christine O’Dea and associate professor from Queen Mary University, Dr Xue Zhou. 

York St John University student and event organiser Jessica Murphy said: “We organised this event for all students to learn more about their futures in business in a world post-COVID so they can learn how to embrace these changes and adapt to them. This offered a rare chance for students themselves to discuss their career questions with industry leaders. 

“I'm a computer science student and although this event centres around the topic of business, I have developed professional skills that have helped me gain a better understanding into the working world by working alongside others. These skills are always important to develop, and I know it will help in my future career.” 

Paulina Banyte, event organiser and business management student at Queen Mary University of London, said: “As a business student myself, learning about this topic myself during the course of organising this symposium has changed my own career aspirations and helped me understand various industries and the skills that are highly sought-after.” 

Attendees also heard from the Associate Deans Dr Rebecca Biggins and Dr Patrick McGurk from York St John University’s Business School and Queen Mary University of London.  

Dr Christine O’Dea said: “Dr Zhou and I enjoyed working with our student event organisers and the symposium was a real success for our students. This type of student-led event has proved effective in helping our students develop key digital employability skills that can help them thrive in the post-Covid 19 workplace.” 

Find out more about York Business School. 

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