Enterprising Mind of the Year Award 2019 / 2020

Enterprising Mind of the Year Award 2019


Consider what have you done that is truly creative, innovative, original and worthy of an award in one of your modules or as a direct result of what you have learned in your module.


The Students’ Association in collaboration with the Proctor’s Office offers a prize for the student who has displayed significant enterprise in and through their studies.


All you need to do to enter is to submit a text document (e.g. using Microsoft Word) of between 500 and 1000 words in length. Additionally, you may also submit further material in the form of either an audio podcast or a video (of up to three minutes), though this is not required. The prize for the best submission is £250 and, more importantly, the considerable prestige, kudos and status as the University’s Enterprising Mind of the Year.  The Award will also appear on your Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR) Transcript.


Submission guidelines

1. Eligibility: Enterprising activity related to any module at the University of St Andrews completed in the calendar year of 2019 is eligible (that is, semester 2 of 2018/19 or semester 1 of 2019/20). The award is open to both currently registered undergraduates and postgraduate students. Research students may also enter if they have completed taught modules in 2019.

2. Format: The format of your submission must include a text document (e.g. using Microsoft Word) of between 500 and 1000 words in length. Additionally, you may also submit further material in the form of either an audio podcast or a video, though this is not required. The maximum length of an audio podcast or video is three minutes and should begin by identifying your name(s) and the relevant module.

The submission must be newly created and not submitted previously elsewhere. Please do not resubmit a piece of assessed work. In other words, you should not simply use a piece of writing or a podcast which you have already produced as part of the assessment in the module. Rather your entry should be freshly prepared for the purposes of this Award.

Some guidance for beginners on how to produce an audio podcast is given on this university webpage.

3. How to enter: Your submission should be sent as an e-mail attachment to both the Associate Dean of Arts and Divinity (associatedean-arts@st-andrews.ac.uk) and the Students’ Association Director of Education (doed@st-andrews.ac.uk).  A maximum of one submission is permitted per student.

4. Deadline: The deadline is 9am on Monday 10th February 2020 (start of week 3 of semester 2).

5. Consent: By submitting an entry, students consent to grant the University permission to post their content on the Enterprise Education website (with credit to you as the creator), whether or not you are successful in winning the Award. To avoid copyright issues, submissions must only include content (video, photographs, music) that they have the right to use or which is licensed under creative commons.

6. Teams:  Submissions are permitted from a team of students in a module and the cash prize will be divided equally among group members.


Judging criteria

  1. 1. Entries will be judged by a panel of five people including a representative of the University Court, a School Careers Class Representative, a member of the Employability Working Group, the Director of Education in the Students’ Association and the Associate Dean Education (Arts and Divinity).

    2. The panel will be looking for entries which display highly enterprising capabilities. These will include several elements from the following list, but not necessarily all of them:

  2. Creativity and innovation
  3. Opportunity recognition, creation and evaluation
  4. Decision making supported by critical analysis and judgement
  5. Implementation of ideas through leadership
  6. Reflection and action
  7. Communication and strategy skills

More information about these capabilities can be found on the Enterprise Education Capabilities web page.

3. In making their selection, the judges will consider the quality of the enterprising initiative and expect this to be communicated lucidly and engagingly. A great initiative explained in a dull way, or a weak initiative explained in a technically excellent podcast, is highly unlikely to win the Award.




Every module inevitably demands some degree of enterprising challenge. This can take many different forms and the Award is intended to be open to a wide range of alternative expressions of an enterprising mind. There are many forms of enterprising activity. Please do look through the applications from last year to provide you with some examples. Below are five further invented case studies which are designed to be purely suggestive rather than to define or limit the scope of submissions.

1) I wrote an essay for my module in Sustainable Development on catering waste. I developed an innovative idea related to plate sizes for minimising leftover food. My tutor was impressed with the novelty of my suggestion. Determined to realise the full potential of my idea, I took the opportunity to reach out to the University’s Environment Team and their Living Labs project to discuss the scope for implementing this approach in the halls of residence in St Andrews. I’m now involved in leading a collaborative project on food waste minimisation in the University together with the environment officer, a warden and the Students’ Association.

2) For my essay on Scottish crime fiction I took a risk and approached Ian Rankin and Alexander McCall Smith for an interview. Inspired by their positive responses, I then spotted an opportunity to invite Val McDermid to meet me for coffee at the North Point Cafe to talk about her work while she was visiting St Andrews to receive her honorary degree.

3) After taking a module on climate change in polar regions, I organised a meeting with a prominent climate scientist who was visiting St Andrews to discuss work experience opportunities in that field of research. Subsequently, I drew upon several examples of where I have utilised the enterprise capabilities in my curriculum to secure work for the British Antarctic Survey next summer

4) After submitting my project on Hadrian's wall, I spotted an opportunity for further research and followed up by recruiting a team of people from Geography and Ancient History to go in search of the lost Roman fort of Condominium. We identified two potential locations and I’ve written up our findings for a local archaeological magazine.

5) For my biodiversity project, I collected samples and data on the earthworms of St Andrews. This is believed to be the most complete taxonomy now available. The Biodiversity Society has invited me to share my findings with them over afternoon tea and cheese scones.



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