Six current and recent Lancaster University students have been named among the UK’s most outstanding African and African Caribbean future leaders.
The sextet are named in the Future Leaders 2020/21 top 150 students and new graduates.
Recent Lancaster University Management School (LUMS) graduates Chioma Ikpa (BSc Marketing Management) and Sandra Yeboah (BSc Business Management), and present final-year LUMS students Alessandra Ozuzu (BSc Marketing Management) and Seun Odusanya (BSc Management, Politics and International Relations [Industry]), and Faculty of Health and Medicine (FHM) graduates Emmanuella Adu-Peprah (MBChB Medicine and Surgery) and Grainne Moon (BSc Biomedicine) have been picked out for their great potential.
Highlighting the importance of more women of colour taking leadership roles, Seun told Future Leaders: “When I think about the extraordinary and accomplished people in high places all around the world, some though not enough are women, and equally some though not enough are Black. More needs to be done to see women of colour fairly represented in leadership roles.”
Chioma, who now works for the Eagle London Agency, was Events Manager for the MagKnit App, coordinating its launch on campus; as well as the KPMG Student Brand Manager at Lancaster and the Voices Leader in the Lancaster University Radical Youth Choir, among other roles. In a decade, she hopes to be an experienced global marketing professional helping people tap into their creativity.
“Being featured as a Future Leader among other Black students, has been an insightful experience,” said Chioma. “Although we vary in age, experience or degree discipline, the one thing we all have in common is that our 'why' for doing and accomplishing what we have was much bigger than ourselves.”
Sandra was Vice-President of the Radical Youth Christian Society at Lancaster University, supporting members facing struggles. She was also recognised for her one-year placement with the Innovation Agency NHS as a digital marketing assistant and for being events coordinator for Lancaster’s African Caribbean Society and the Lancaster Ethnic Diversity Committee. Her 10-year goal is to be a CEO with an NHS Trust.
“I hope that being a part of this serves as an inspiration for other young black women, to use their skills to create a positive impact in the lives of others,” said Sandra.
(L-R) Graine Moon, Alessandra Ozuzu, Chioma Ikpa, Seun Odusanya, Sandra Yeboah and Emmanuella Adu-Peprah
Alessandra served as Vice-President of the Lancaster University Marketing Society, creating careers events, workshops and trips for students interested in a career in advertising or marketing. During a placement at Amazon Prime, she was responsible for the promotion of a new Italian comedy show. In 10 years, she wants to be a country marketing lead for a tech or entertainment giant.
“It is such a privilege to be featured, especially amongst some of the most amazing young Black students and graduates in the UK,” said Alessandra. “We are all driving change within our respective communities, and being recognised as a Future Leader has given me motivation to strive for more. Most importantly, it is great motivation to be inspired by and work with other young Black people to become powerful changemakers and increase representation in everything we do.”
Seun is a course representative and student ambassador in LUMS, and was selected as the first BAME student rep in the Politics Department, helping review issues raised by ethnic minority students to ensure positive change. She participated in a focus group with the Vice-Chancellor to share her experiences, both socially and academically, and helped lobby for initiatives such as Black History Month to have greater representation within academia. Seun was part of the Race, Religion and Ethnicity Team during her placement at the Enterprise Rent-A-Car European headquarters, and hopes to go on to make an impact with an NGO or humanitarian corporation, with a focus on Africa.
In the Faculty of Health and Medicine, Emmanuella was the British Medical Association representative for Lancaster University, and President of Radical Youth Lancaster. She hopes to specialise in obstetrics and gynaecology. Grainne was President of the University’s UNICEF society, breaking fundraising records by raising more than £3,700 in her first term. She is also a tutor with Key Stage 3 pupils for Tutorful, and hopes to work for the World Health Organisation.
“It is so inspiring to see Black students across the UK excel and make change – it gives me so much hope for our generation,” said Grainne. “I look forward to seeing more Lancaster University students join Future Leaders next year.”
Emmanuella said: “It’s truly an honour to nominated as a Future Leader. Lancaster University has helped shape who I am as a leader and enabled me to refine the skills that will help me in future leadership endeavours. As a Black Doctor, my goal is to inspire more women and increase the diversity within my profession - to be the voice for the voiceless.”
Dr Ann-Marie Houghton, the Dean for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at Lancaster University said: “We are proud of this inspiring group of women who have clearly recognised the benefits and importance of creating and making the most of opportunities, whether during their academic studies, placements or in student societies and wider social activities. Through their leadership and organisational roles they have helped to enrich the experience of all students whether that be by the supporting their peers or ensuring things important to them as future African and African Caribbean future leaders were heard.”Back to News