There isn’t a better way to enhance your employability while at university than participating in the Undergraduate of the Year Awards. After reading about this award and receiving an email from TARGETjobs the organiser of the awards – I knew that my range of skills, experiences and achievements would stand me in good stead to enter the Female Undergraduate of the Year category, which is sponsored by Rolls-Royce.

The application process was challenging but interesting. The selection process involved completing an application, an online assessment with situational, numerical and inductive reasoning tests and an assessment day.

The assessment centre was a good reflection of actual graduate assessment centres, which made it good practise for me! The ability of the other applicants at the assessment centre was phenomenal and I remember thinking that I didn’t envy the organisers for having to choose a winner. I thought everybody performed with equal excellence and I wasn’t even sure I would make it through to the top ten! I was truly elated when I found out that I had made it to the top ten and would get to attend the gala awards ceremony at Canary Wharf, London.

This award and the whole process is a fantastic way for students to develop, recognise and articulate their personal and professional skills and attributes. It is the best opportunity to hone your employability, enhance your professional development, expand your network, boost your confidence and - especially if you are able to make it to the top 10 – gain some extra experience. Who knows – you may even win it!

Some people avoid such awards, considering them to be challenges because they are focused on the winning and losing aspects. Don’t take this award as a challenge. After this fantastic experience, I would like to advise everyone to have confidence in themselves – and go for it! Whether you win or not, you emerge as a more confident and knowledgeable person. Any opportunity to learn adds to your experience and wisdom.

Recognition aside, merely applying for awards brings a multitude of career benefits. Putting together an award application can help you reflect on your skills and career progression. It may push you to become more competitive by filling gaps in your CV and increasing your visibility. Of course, should you emerge from the process with an award in hand, all the better. But even if you don’t win, competing for an award is often a worthwhile effort that will help to further your professional development.

Reaching the final was a huge achievement for me as it was quite competitive, with 4,542 entries from 138 different universities across the UK. Engagement in this provided me with a golden opportunity to practise the recruitment process used for graduate positions with internationally-recognised organisations.

I am amazed to have reached the top ten. For me, being one of the top Female Undergraduates of the Year was a memorable experience and one of my best achievements so far, as it not only gave me a lot of recognition, but it also provided me with an eight-week summer internship with a widely-respected global company: Rolls-Royce.

It was like a dream come true for me. I thank God for His blessings and I thank TARGETjobs for providing me with this opportunity. They organised it really well, keeping me well-informed and explaining each stage of the process. This made me feel comfortable and so able to give my very best.