You only have to look at the comments from the 2017 LARAC scholars to learn that the class of 2018 are in for a real treat.
Let’s face it, it’s usually longer-standing members of staff who get to go to the big events! But our aim in the 15 years we have run the scholarship is to get the knowledge, networking, benchmarking, and the contextual big-picture that is contained in the LARAC Conference out there to the widest possible cross-section of LA staff from across the whole of the UK. That’s why not only the conference, but the accommodation and the travel is included in the scholarship. This makes winners not only out of the individuals but also their member authorities, and it also means we can communicate the important work LARAC does for its members, from the outset of peoples’ careers.
Our scholars certainly find out that we provide a great conference and cross-media communications, but they will also come to realise how we influence Government policy on behalf of our members and that we have a seat at many of the influential industrial steering groups and think tanks that shape our industry and at which we must have a strong voice to make the local authority position known. Indeed, many speakers and contributors want to come and address our conference because of the work we are trying to do together, and because of the common ground we are seeking to find.
But it doesn’t stop at conference, REPIC is funding this scholarship, and over the last few years, they have developed a year-round experience for our scholars, for example: in September the 2017 scholars will be visiting the EWRG Recycling Plant in Huddersfield and taking part in a roundtable discussion following a tour of the WEEE facility there. REPIC have really ensured the scholarship experience continues to be enriching and stretching throughout the year.
So – who are this year’s lucky winners? We had a hard job judging this year, and we would like to stress that if you didn’t succeed this time, please try again next year, if you still qualify. We have just 18 places and sometimes it is a fine line between those who gain a place and those who do not.
The 2018 LARAC Scholarship winners are:
Stephen Beresford – Durham County Council
Carol Campbell – Orkney Islands Council
Declan Donnelly – Causeway Coast and Glens Council
Robyn Downs – Dorset Waste Partnership
Kirsty Early - Fife Council
Peter Elson – Rutland County Council
Rhys Gwyther – Caerphilly County Borough Council
David Hamlin – Lichfield District Council
Jane Jordan – North Lincolnshire Council
Joseph Kenny – North Norfolk District Council
Hannah Lomax – Rochdale Council
Ben Mailes – Cornwall Council
Kate McCall – Kent Resource Partnership
Annie Moden – West Lindsey District Council
Aman Shaikh – London Borough of Waltham Forest
Matthew Sharp – Preston City Council
Lauren Walker – West Berkshire Council
Karen Wynn – South Tyne and Wear Waste Partnership