Despite the undoubted focus on events in East London, Greenwich and Eton Dorney, we’re proud to note that the London 2012 spotlight also hovered occasionally over a certain south-western corner of the capital during the recent Olympic games. Cyclist Bradley Wiggins said nothing would ever top the “incredible” noise from the crowd as he raced through Kingston during his gold-winning time trial, Kingston-born judo bronze medallist Karina Bryant is already planning to return to her old school in Surbiton, and, on the penultimate day of the games, Kingston University graduate Ed McKeever (aka the “Usain Bolt of the water”) took gold in the 200m kayak sprint.
But it’s not just athletes and Team GB supporters who are enjoying the glow of gold around Kingston right now. Our very own MA Publishing and MA Publishing and Creative Writing students also have something to celebrate: a set of similarly golden accomplishments announced at our recent awards and achievements ceremony.
As in previous years, Kingston’s 2011/12 MA Publishing Oscars honoured the best and the brightest of our current students. In a Hunger Games-themed ceremony, which included highly-competitive literary games and dressing as your favourite book character, the prizes were awarded by lecturers Alison Baverstock (dressed as Long John Silver from Treasure Island, “before he lost his leg”), Anna Faherty (dressed as Flight Lieutenant Bigglesworth, aka Biggles) and Judith Watts (dressed as publisher Anastasia Steele from Fifty Shades of Grey).
And the winners – voted for by their fellow students – are…
Best academic researcher: Kelly Cracknell
Unable to pick her award up on the night, Kelly was described by one of the students who nominated her as being “the most prepared and least flustered person of the year”.
Best BUSINESS BRAIN: GRACE HEALY
In a hard-fought category, aspiring entrepreneur Grace received three times as many votes as her fellow nominees.
Best use of a placement: Lisa vanterpool
Lisa (aka Daisy Buchanan) not only discovered her love of rights while undertaking a placement with Blake Friedmann literary agency, she impressed them so much they asked her to stay on.
Best networker: Philippa Sitters
One of Philippa’s (aka Jane Eyre) nominators described her as “seamlessly able to approach, talk and network with anyone in the industry”.
Best copywriter: Melanie Kydd
Bucking the trend of under-achieving Australians this summer, Mel (aka Trillian from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) won this category through well-researched and expertly-delivered writing.
MOST PROFESSIONAL APPLICATION OF PUBLISHING SKILLS: ERYL NORRIS
In the tightest race of the night, Eryl (aka Orinoco from The Wombles) came through based on her ability to stay calm, committed and industrious while under pressure.
Best overall contributor MA Publishing and Creative Writing: Kristin bergene
Kristin (aka Sam from Lord of the Rings) received the most nominations for this category, as well as winning it. One fellow student said “when anyone needed her or if anything needed to be done, she was there and she did it and she did it well… She was very giving of herself, ever supportive and always willing to put herself out there”.
Best overall contributor MA Publishing: Laura Vile
Laura (aka Dr Kay Scarpetta from Patricia Cornwell’s crime novels) was the runaway winner of this category, rewarded as much for her clinical skills of critical analysis as her ability to get on with everyone.
Congratulations to all the winning students: you’re the best of the best! Just like our Olympic heroes, we’ve got high aspirations for your future careers, we hope you’ll remember Kingston fondly and we’d love for you to come back and inspire others who want to follow in your footsteps.
The full list of nominees included Siobhan Aldridge, Jess Becking, Corey Brookes, Kendyl Bryant, Jessica Dick, Felicia Gums, Ben Hewitt, Francesca Hopwood, Becky Mayhew, Holly Middlemiss, Yoanna Novakova, Alyssa O’Sullivan, Neringa Pangonyte, Joelyn Rolston-Esdelle, Bianca Walker, Jessie Warren and Holly Yamamoto. It’s a shame not everyone could have left with a medal, but we all know it’s not about the winning, it’s about the taking part…
Thanks once again to our fabulously talented photographer, Laura Bottomley, for capturing all our golden moments.