Outstanding former student recognised at the Northern Power Women Awards.

Posted on 6th April 2017

A former student at the University of Chester’s Business School - and one of its most successful students - has been recognised on the ‘Top 50 Future List’ at the Northern Power Women Awards. 

Stephanie Hooker at the Northern Power Women Awards.
Stephanie Hooker at the Northern Power Women Awards.

Stephanie Hooker, who is 23 and from New Brighton, achieved a First Class classification in her BA (Hons) in Business Management and Entrepreneurship, and then completed a Master’s (with distinction) in Business Consultancy in Supporting Employee Development through the Work-Based Integrative Studies (WBIS) programme. 

Although unsure of who nominated her for the recognition at the Northern Power Women Awards, Steph believes it was her Master’s degree research paper that contributed to her receiving this recognition. The research paper investigated the gender imbalance at management level within the STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) industry. During her research, Steph visited numerous STEM orientated organisations based in the North West, to interview both senior male and female managers. 

The Northern Power Women (NPW) initiative is a collaborative campaign aiming to accelerate gender diversity in the North of England. The NPW initiative wants to encourage the transformation of business culture to increase opportunities for women by showcasing role models and the best practice businesses that are driving and leading economic growth. 

The ‘Top 50 Future List’ is designed to recognise the influencers and change makers of the future, who are already making a difference in their environments and communities. Other award categories included Person with a Purpose, Outstanding Entrepreneur, Mentor of the Year, Agent of Change, Transformational Leader and the Small/Medium /Large Business of the Year award. Steph was also nominated in the One to Watch category. 

The awards were held at the Hilton Hotel in Deansgate, Manchester last month, just before International Women’s Day. Steph said: “With a vast range of speakers, companies and individuals in attendance, there was certainly a buzz in the atmosphere. The night left everyone feeling inspired and wondering how, when and where, they can play their part in the drive for change.” 

Steph now works as a procurement analyst/buyer at Urenco UK Limited in Capenhurst, and is studying for her Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) qualification. She said: “Having this recognition whilst working in the nuclear industry is invaluable and I hope it can be used to help attract more females to a career in STEM orientated industries. I didn’t really know anything about the nuclear industry before I joined - I seem to have ended up here by chance - but I believe there is an opportunity here for me to create a very successful career. I feel quite humble, knowing that someone has taken the time to put me forward, and that they value me and my work. I’m proud to be Northern and I am looking forward to getting more involved with NPW in 2017.” 

Connie Hancock, Head of the Business and Finance Department at Chester Business School, added: “I had the immense pleasure of teaching Steph as an undergraduate, as well as tutoring her throughout her Master’s. She was always a committed student, who showed much in the way of promise, even in her first year. Demonstrating talent at conducting academic research and displaying high level pragmatic skills in entrepreneurial endeavour, Steph was always a winner to me and her inclusion on the ‘Top 50 Future List’ is testament to her hard work. Steph is a credit to Chester Business School, and I am so very proud of her achievements as she progresses along her chosen career path.”