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Global Development Institute

Alumna wins British Council award

4 May 2018

Two alumnae of the Global Development Institute have been recognised for their work at the Study UK Alumni Awards.

Rita Robert Otu
Rita Robert Otu

Two alumnae of the Global Development Institute have been recognised for their work at the British Councils Study UK Alumni Awards. Rita Robert Otu was awarded the Entrepreneurial Award for alumni from Sub-Saharan Africa. Katie Acheson was a finalised at the awards in the Social Impact category for alumni from East Asia/Pacific. The awards recognise alumni who studied in the UK, who are initiate or contribute to innovative or creative new ideas, solutions or business opportunities.

Rita was awarded the Entrepreneurial Award in recognition of her work on ending hunger in Nigeria. As a farm manager in Nigeria she works to end hunger in the country and has raised over $3000 for women entrepreneurship programs, improving the lives of over 3000 Nigerian women and girls through agricultural innovation. Rita is also the founder and CEO of People Environment and Sustainability Foundation.

Rita studied for an MSc International Development: Economics and Management of Rural Development at the global Development Institute. Of her time at Manchester she said; "Studying at The University of Manchester broadened my perspective to care about environmental political economics and it led me to a career in International Development. The business skills I learnt during the field trip while in school equipped me with the tools to navigate and excel in the world of work. Also, studying in the UK allowed me to challenge different international perspectives on a range of issues, including economic and gender equality."

Katie Acheson was a regional finalist in the Social Impact category in recognition of her work as co-founder of NAPS, which aims to see better collaboration between policy, program work and data to enhance the lives of young people around the world. The organisation is a combination of statistical experts and social development specialists that embeds group participation practices into high-level strategic and statistical data analysis to deliver solutions to real-world problems.Katie is also chief executive officer of the charity Youth Action and her impact includes the enrolment of 65,000 young people to a critical campaign on marriage equality in Australia.  

She undertook at MSc International Development: Social Policy & Social Development in 2012 and said of her time; “I chose the University of Manchester for the exceptional academic reputation, acclaimed academics and diversity of the program which included field research. The diversity of students, who came from over 100 countries, along with the academic program propelled my learning farther than I had even hoped.”

Professor David Hulme, Executive Director of the Global Development Institute commented; “We are delighted to see how far students of the institute have gone, inspired by both their studies and experiences at Manchester  Congratulations to Rita and Katie who embody the best of our graduates and present creative and ambitious solutions to real-world problems.”

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