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Four students recognised with the Provost’s Prize

The Provost's Prize has been awarded to one graduate and three undergraduate students who have made a significant contribution to the College community during their time at King's.

The winners of this year's prize are PhD student Rhys Williams and finalists Tom Pickard (pictured above), Timi Olumide-Wahab and Yutong Chen. The awards were conferred for the first time by Gillian Tett with the following citations:

Despite a busy schedule at the Judge Business School, where he is in charge of the graduate social programme as well as the annual PhD conference, Rhys Williams has gone above and beyond the call of duty in College. As associate of the King's Entrepreneurship Lab (voluntary role since 2022) he has been in charge of events, such as weekly speaker series as well as the smaller workshops that give our students hands on experience. Rhys was instrumental in getting the E-Lab to successfully scale up following the generous gift from David Sainsbury (KC 1959) and the Gatsby Charitable Foundation in 2022, and his hard work has allowed the E-Lab to expand in many different directions and serve the King's community as well as attract hundreds to King's. He also single-handedly runs our webpage, the event booking pages and the E-Lab’s Sixth Form Essay Competition which encourages UK-based school students to pursue entrepreneurial aspirations and understand better how to launch an enterprise.

Tom Pickard has combined his conscientious work on his degree course with a very demanding schedule as a Choral Scholar in the College Choir. He clearly derives a lot of enjoyment from his music, and it has been a source of energy, rather than a burden to him. He is not only a very capable and committed student but also a very kind and open person, ready to talk to - and help - anyone. In 2022, he took on the role of Senior Choral Scholar which entails a supervisory role, looking after the younger members of the Choir, which he has done in an exemplary gentle and caring manner. He helped launch the King’s Men Engagement and Learning Programme, which delivers singing workshops to children in schools around the UK. Tom’s kindness, and his dedication to King’s - as a former Chorister, a student and Choral Scholar - have been absolutely outstanding; the College would have been a poorer place without him over these past five years.

As KCSU President during the unsettled latter years of the pandemic, Timi Olumide-Wahab brought calm, kindness and confidence to the student body and supported its interactions with the wider college during a difficult period. She was prominent during her tenure in advancing the concerns of all students, but with special attention to BAME and female students. She previously served as Ethnic Minorities Officer in KCSU, where she co-led on new initiatives to create safe channels of communications for students to raise issues or concerns for KCSU to take forward. She subsequently served as Social Media officer for King’s Politics, and was an active contributor to what was a highly successful year of events. As one of a few students who came forward to be a research assistant on the Legacies of Slavery project in College, she contributed a valuable piece of research into historical donations. Timi was prominent in the 50 Years of Women at King’s celebrations, and it is testament to the broad affection and admiration for her in College that her vibrant portrait hangs in Hall. Perhaps most important about Timi is that despite being less pre-possessing than many of her peers, and despite being someone who felt heavily the challenge of adjusting to King’s when she first arrived, she stood up and sought to make a contribution to the community, and grew and thrived in doing so. She has set a wonderful example for other students.

Yutong Chen has effectively been the ‘glue’ for all the final year medics and kept them close as a group as they all pulled together to support him when he faced significant personal hurdles - he has also faced significant financial hardship which he has overcome with the support of the College. Despite being without any family or relatives in the UK and coping through the pandemic alone for lengthy periods of time, Yutong has done fantastically well in his final medical exams and achieved a distinction which only the top quintile of students get. 


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