Staffordshire University fast-track students share industry Top Performer of the Year Award

Andrew Dons, Rachel Border, Richard Blackburn, Steven Tams.

Two Staffordshire University fast-track students have won a prestigious industry award.

Andrew Don and Steven Tams both scooped the Hays Accountancy and Finance Top Performer of the Year Award, after completing a two-year fast-track degree in Accounting and Finance at Staffordshire University's Business School.

With little to separate their first class honours success, it was decided to recognise both graduates’ achievements.

Andrew Don, 29, from Manchester, a former financial advisor for the Royal Bank of Scotland, said: “I was just so made up achieving a first class honours, but it took me by complete surprise when I kept reading and saw that I won this award as well.”

In April, while still completing his degree, Andrew was offered a three year paid graduate scheme with the Co-op group in Manchester which will lead to future management opportunities.

He said: “The course has given me a greater standing for the future. I come from a work environment and I didn’t want to study for three years, the fast-track option offered the ideal solution.”

Joint winner Steven, 43, a former Aerospace engineer, said: “I am very proud to be given this award, the calibre of students on this course was very high and to be recognised in this way is an honour.”

Steven, who has since returned to Aerospace as a Technical Manager, added: “I highly recommend the course; it is very suited to mature students as it attracts great people who are focussed and eager to do well. The achievements of the group on this course are a credit to the tutors.”

Both were presented with a trophy and prize money for their achievements by Hays Accountancy and Finance.

Last year’s winner, Karl McCormack, is completing a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) Scholarship at Staffordshire University and is employed to research and develop new modules and teaching for the Business School.

Academic Group Leader, Alison Maguire said: “We’ve had yet another strong group of talented students achieving great marks. Both Andrew and Steven have shown determination and focus througout their course of study and they are rightly rewarded with the Hays Accountancy and Finance Award.”

Richard Blackburn, Business Manager for Hays, said: “We are most impressed with the students from the fast-track course. They have shown dedication and impressive final results and we hope that we can continue to work closely with Staffordshire University in the future.” 

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