The Bristol PLUS Award rewards students for participating in extracurricular activities alongside their studies, and provides a framework to articulate their skills and experiences to employers.
Last year we launched the Outstanding PLUS Awards (OPA), to reward students who went the extra mile in their PLUS Award activity. In this final edition of our four-part OPA blog series, we will be breaking down the Resilience and Wellbeing Champion categories to show the spectrum of activities that can be used towards both categories.
This category is all about demonstrating how you persevered or adapted to challenges whilst in pursuit of your PLUS Award.
A personal challenge is a broad concept and can encompass many situations. The highest scoring nominations reflected on how they responded to challenges, and how those challenges impacted their PLUS Award journey:
- Mayra Yadira Rivera Lopez, last year’s winner, suffered family bereavement during the Covid-19 pandemic and took on a caregiver role. She reflected on her resilience and support system during this difficult time which enabled her to continue with her extracurricular teaching work and PhD research
- Rosie Buntin, last year’s honourable mention, experienced family estrangement during her first year of university. In her nomination, she reflected on how persevering with her part-time job and volunteering helped her feel connected to the local community and get through challenging times
- Rushali Bhat worked as a Teaching Assistant for her PLUS activity. She reflected on her initial apprehensions that her mental health would be a barrier to success, but her experiences helped her become more empathetic and flourish in the role
- Adam Mohammad Uzir Michael was diagnosed with a hidden disability which severely impacted his confidence and academic studies. His nomination reflected on his motivations for pushing through these obstacles to become the spokesperson of Islamophobia Awareness Month.
This category is all about your efforts to improve the wellbeing of your peers or others in your wider community.
The highest scoring nominations articulated how their PLUS activity impacted the wellbeing of their community. We saw a broad range of activities used towards this category, shared below to give you an idea of what could be eligible:
- Lee Ling Chu was last year’s winner for championing wellbeing support for East Asian students under the Be More Empowered (BME) for Success Programme
- Liam Taylor received an honourable mention for coordinating fundraising efforts within the Clifton Crusaders rugby team, successfully raising over £1200 for Young Minds
- Artemis Xenitidou supported young people’s wellbeing by volunteering with a special needs charity and becoming a volunteer tutor
- Thomas Goodyer had a part-time job as a Teaching Assistant for students with accessibility needs, and volunteered with a mental health helpline.
Thinking of nominating yourself for the Outstanding PLUS Awards?
Be open minded; try not to restrict yourself to a single category based on its title. Consider other categories and how you might adapt articulating your PLUS Award activity to fit the criteria.
Our OPA categories are designed to be broad, and you may even find that your activity fits into more than one category!
Our PLUS top tip? Read through each category’s criteria fully before deciding which category to apply for, AND invest some time to reflect on how your activity can be articulated to meet the category brief. Plan your answers for the best chance of success!
Remember, to be eligible, you will need to have completed your PLUS Award in the same academic year. So sign up for the PLUS Award now!