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MPI UK and Ireland chapter announces winner of Vanessa Cotton Scholarship 2018

Event management student Ebony Banks has been named as the winner of the 2018 Vanessa Cotton Scholarship Award, organised by MPI UK and Ireland chapter.

The Wrexham Glyndwr University student emerged victorious from the 10-strong shortlist to win a month-long paid internship with Reed Travel Exhibitions. She was announced as the winner at the MPI Networks Christmas Connects event at the Melia White House Hotel, where her achievement was celebrated with a drinks reception, networking and live music.

Course leader Jacqueline Hughes-Lundy said: “Learning that Ebony had won this international prestigious award was fantastic news. She will benefit greatly from the work experience and is very excited to get started. These opportunities are invaluable to event students and even better when one of our hard-working students wins!”

Now in its seventh year, the Vanessa Cotton Scholarship scheme was created in 2011 in honour of UK event industry veteran Vanessa Cotton who died in 2010 after a battle with cancer.

Following the strength of the applications received, the judging panel shortlisted 10 nominees which were then put forward to Reed Travel Exhibitions.

Richard Allchild, president of the MPI UK&I chapter, said: “The quality of the entrants has once again been unbelievable. All of the students are truly passionate about our industry and it must have been a tough decision to choose the winner, so a massive congratulations to our winner Ebony.

“The Vanessa Cotton Scholarship gives students the opportunity to gain invaluable paid work experience within the Industry after leaving University which can only help their career development. Reed Exhibitions has partnered with MPI for many years on this initiative and I would like to thank them for their continued support.”

David Thompson, exhibition director at IBTM World, said: “We are honoured to support MPI’s Vanessa Cotton Scholarship once again this year. In a dynamic industry such as ours, it is vital that we recognise and nurture new and emerging talent, and we are very much looking forward to welcoming Ebony, this year’s winner, to spend some time with the IBTM team, including at IBTM World, and to giving her a real insight into the diverse and exciting world of meetings and events.”

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