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HomeEducationCharity to honour inspirational undergraduate from Harrow at awards ceremony

Charity to honour inspirational undergraduate from Harrow at awards ceremony

Alexandru Mihaila, an undergraduate who grew up in Harrow, will be celebrated at the sixth annual Student Social Mobility Awards. This event, hosted by the award-winning social mobility charity upReach at London’s Mansion House, recognises students who have overcome significant adversity to achieve outstanding academic and career accomplishments.

The UK faces persistent issues of social mobility. Recent findings from the Social Mobility Commission reveal that individuals from professional family backgrounds are six times more likely to enter professional jobs compared to those from working-class backgrounds. The Student Social Mobility Awards highlight the exceptional work being done to address these disparities and promote social mobility across the UK.

Alexandru has been honoured in the Tech Sector category for his outstanding achievements while at university. Overcoming multiple challenges, including attending a low-performing school and being the first in his family to go to university, Alexandru has thrived academically and professionally. He has taken on significant extracurricular roles such as Computer Science Student Ambassador and Director of Technology for a major society, engaged in various business projects, and secured a competitive graduate role at one of the world’s largest banks, with support from charities like upReach.

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Reflecting on his nomination, Alexandru said, “Winning this award would be an immense source of pride and recognition of my efforts. It would stand as one of my greatest achievements to date. More importantly, I hope my journey can serve as an example and inspiration to younger students who aspire to improve their circumstances.”

Growing up in Harrow, Alexandru faced economic challenges and attended a school that struggled with funding and performance. He credits his determination to succeed to the harsh environment and the motivational words of a teacher, which pushed him to strive for a better future. “This background instilled in me a determination to never let anything hold me back and to avoid the fate my teacher warned about,” he said.

The Student Social Mobility Awards have seen a record number of nominations this year, with 349 nominees from 41 universities. Many of these students represent the first in their families to pursue higher education and have balanced multiple responsibilities alongside their studies.

Nick Bent, CEO of upReach, emphasised the significance of the awards: “These awards illuminate the journeys of those who, despite times of economic adversity, have triumphed over significant obstacles to succeed. Their stories serve as invaluable inspiration for their peers and future generations at a time when this is sorely needed.”

The awards ceremony will feature a distinguished panel of judges and keynote speaker Ayo Solake, known for her expertise in STEM and sustainability. Generous support from sponsors, including Platinum Partner Bank of America and others, will cover the costs of hosting the ceremony and enable nominees from across the UK to attend.

Alexandru’s story is a testament to the power of perseverance and the impact of supportive initiatives on social mobility. As he looks forward to the awards ceremony, he hopes that his journey will inspire other students from similar backgrounds to pursue their dreams and overcome challenges.

For more information about the Student Social Mobility Awards and upReach, visit www.upreach.org.uk.

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