May 24, 2022 – over 350 people gather in Canary Wharf, London. Hundreds of smiles light up the venue. Universities, students, our team members and host-Richard Ayoade, bustle about with excited chatter- delighted to come together and experience the first face-to-face WUSCA event since the 2019 pandemic break out.
Thanks to our IDP Connect and Whatuni team for working hard behind the scenes to make the event a smashing success! They have been at it for a decade now. And, we had the opportunity to talk to our team about their WUSCA experience.
Our B2B marketing team at IDP Connect share with us an overview of what WUSCA is:
“WUSCA is the Whatuni Student Choice Awards - the only Higher Education awards ceremony in the UK where institutions are solely judged and reviewed by students themselves across a variety of categories, from best Student Union to Student Support, Student Life and more.
Through these categories, WUSCA helps universities understand the most important factors students value through the thousands of student reviews collected.
This annual event is a true celebration of the student voice and the hard work of higher education providers across the United Kingdom to deliver exceptional student experiences. After having visited campuses around the UK and also online, our review collectors collated over 30,000 verified student reviews this year.
What we feel universities love the most about WUSCA is the chance they have to unite as a sector in a celebratory event, toast in the hard work of institutions across the UK and most importantly, champion the student voice.
We also had some very influential stakeholders attending and speaking at our Insight Day, which took place on the day of the WUSCA at the same venue.
We are delighted to have played a part in bringing the WUSCA experience to life to the world. We look forward to the next WUSCA!”
And here’s Brad Johnson, Communications and Event Manager, IDP Connect - to tell us about the experience of arranging the event with his team members:
“To the team, WUSCA is about being together. It is the sound of laughter. The sound of celebration. The thrill of helping an amazing event come together beautifully as a team.
This event creates special moments where, as a sector - we have the opportunity to celebrate and reflect on the outstanding work achieved for students.
After 2 years apart, being one of the first events in the sector to bring back an event of this nature was a fantastic experience. There was something quite special about having over 350 people coming together to collaborate once again.
To ensure that the event was engaging and successful, our team spoke to guests to evaluate their feedback based on the event. Additionally, we worked collaboratively across teams to ensure that everyone had the opportunity to feed into the design of this special event. Here’s a quick look into what my WUSCA day and the day leading to it looked like:
May 23 – Almost there:
11 AM: I arrive at the venue for load in and technical set up.
This goes on until around 8 PM followed by some last-minute event admin in the hotel lobby until 11 PM.
At this point, we leave the tech team to programme the lights until around 1 AM.
May 24 –Yes, time to WUSCA:
6:30 AM: I go back to the venue for technical sign off and venue prep for our Insight Day that begins at 10AM.
After running this first event until 4 PM, we turn the conference into an awards dinner in a record time of 90 minutes – all ready to welcome guests from 6 PM!
WUSCA festivities kick off with our universities and other sector clients
Then the adrenaline rush - waiting for the announcement of winning universities! Congratulations to the University College Birmingham for bagging the University of the Year 2022 award.
1:15 AM: Finally, I close the venue doors - wishing everyone a safe journey home.
What a day! Overall, an experience we cherish as a team and are so proud to be a part of.
And speaking of celebrations, what we really celebrate about working at IDP is being able to come into work every day and help build a better tomorrow for future students, together as a team through all the work we do in the education sector.
If you, like me, want to celebrate your career with purpose and meaning - then, IDP could be the place for you too. Join our team. Let’s celebrate building a bright future for the world of tomorrow!”