Jessica Felton-Page (BSc 2007): Fighting food waste at Rubies in The Rubble

In the UK, an estimated 20 to 40% of all fruit and vegetables grown for human consumption are rejected before they reach the shops. This means that around 9.5 million tonnes of food is thrown away annually. This is mainly because they do not match the supermarkets’ strict cosmetic standards meaning they are not the right colour, shape or size to be deemed attractive for sale.*

Jessica Felton-Page works for Rubies in the Rubble, an ethical food company that fights food waste by using the “unattractive” fruit and vegetables to make beautiful condiments. The company suggests “if we stop wasting food that could have been eaten, the benefit to the planet would be the equivalent of taking 1 in 4 cars off the road.” In 2020 alone, the company cooked 115 tonnes of rejected produce into delicious sauces, rescuing them from going to waste. Their mission is to double that number in the following year.

In early November, Jessica will join a panel discussion on Responsible Businesses, with insights and advice from other career experts in the sustainability profession. Ahead of the event, we spoke to Jessica about her journey from an undergraduate degree in Chemistry to fighting food waste at Rubies in the Rubble and her memories of studying in Bristol. (more…)

Vincent Onuegbu (BA 2018) Co-Founder of Young Goat: a clothing brand with purpose

Founded by a group of University of Bristol graduates, Young Goat is a clothing and lifestyle brand that’s driven by its values. Since launching in 2019, Young Goat has amassed a loyal fan base (pleasingly referred to as the Herd) and has appeared in publications including GQ and Vanity Fair. As the brand goes from strength to strength, they’re using their platform to raise money for mental health charities in Bristol and beyond.

Throughout Black History Month, Young Goat will be raising money in memory of their friend Olisa Odukwe, who very sadly passed away earlier this year. The Young Goat team will be donating all profits made through sales of a special edition t-shirt to Black Minds Matter, a charity which connects Black individuals and families with free mental health services.

We spoke to one of Young Goat’s founding members, Partnerships Lead Vincent Onuegbu (BA 2018), to hear more about what the brand stands for.

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AssessmentDay Director, Oliver Savill (MEng 2006): taking the fear out of psychometric testing

We all know how it feels to sit an exam that we haven’t properly prepared for. The racing heartbeat. The sweaty palms. The feeling of impending doom. It’s a sensation that Bristol graduate Oliver Savill (MEng 2006) has helped thousands of people to avoid.

During his final year at the University, Oliver had to sit a number of psychometric tests for graduate job applications. After struggling to find resources which could help him to revise, he took matters into his own hands by launching AssessmentDay – which is now the UK’s number one site for practice psychometric tests. Here, he reflects on his time at Bristol and his entrepreneurial career path.

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Elodie Read (BSc 2016): Combatting climate change through tech

Elodie Read (BSc 2016), Programme Lead at Subak

After graduating from Bristol with a first class honours degree in Philosophy and Politics, Elodie Read has advocated for her passions all over the globe. She has worked on gender equality and refugee rights programmes with NGOs in the UK, Spain, Indonesia and Kenya. Now, she is channeling her energy into tackling climate change by working as the Programme Lead for Subak – the world’s first accelerator for climate nonprofits.

Co-founded by fellow Bristol alumnus, Gi Fernando MBE (BEng 1992) and Baroness Bryony Worthington, Subak was launched this summer. It connects like-minded environmental non-profits, helping them to share data and collaborate in order to address the climate emergency. Elodie is responsible for running Subak’s Accelerator Programme and is the main point of contact for the organisations it supports. Here she recalls some of her favourite Bristol memories and gives her advice on starting a career in sustainability.

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Subak Co-Founder, Gi Fernando MBE (BEng 1992): “Data is a source of truth and numbers don’t lie”

Subak Co-Founder, Gi Fernando MBE (BEng 1992)

After the extreme weather events of this summer and the stark warnings of the recent IPCC report, the climate crisis feels more pressing than ever before. But could data be the key to us living in greater harmony with our planet? Bristol alumnus and serial entrepreneur Gi Fernando (BEng 1992) certainly thinks so.

This summer, Gi and Co-Founder Baroness Bryony Worthington launched Subak, the world’s first global non-profit tech accelerator dedicated to combatting the climate emergency. Subak acts like a business school by helping to speed the growth of climate focussed tech start-ups; the organisations that Subak supports share data and collaborate in the fight against climate change.

As well as being a social impact entrepreneur, Gi is also an engineer, investor and a father-of-three. He was awarded an MBE in the 2017 New Year Honours for services to the digital economy and has also been named as one of the UK’s top 100 Asian stars in tech. We caught up with him to hear about his newest venture, and to learn more about how data could save the world.

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The five greatest impacts of COVID-19 on the creative industries

The creative industries account for almost one in eight UK businesses and contributed £115.9 billion gross added value to the UK economy pre-pandemic. So what will happen to this booming industry in the aftermath of COVID-19?

We spoke to three Bristol alumni working in creative industries to get their thoughts on what the future of this sector might look like beyond the reach of COVID-19. Here’s what they had to say. (more…)

After your English degree: Seven top takeaways from our alumni event

In April, three fantastic Bristol alumni hosted a digital event aimed at English Literature students and recent graduates starting out in their careers. Our hosts shared their career insights and tips on how to get the most out of an English degree after graduating.

We were joined by Alice Johnston (BA 2013), a Freelance Journalist who specialises in lifestyle pieces and has written for titles including CNN, the Daily Mail, the Metro and Culture Trip. Alongside her was Catherine Spencer (MA 2015), Senior Digital Marketer at the National Trust, who has a wealth of experience in creating and delivering marketing strategies for the organisation. We were also joined by India Fallon (BA 2014), Senior Programme Officer at Development Pathways, an organisation which aims to create evidence-based solutions to social and economic challenges faced by nations around the world.

We rounded up some of their best tips below! (more…)

Journalist, Ateh Jewel (BA 2000): “You do not bend yourself to the world. The world must bend to you.”

Vogue, Glamour, the Guardian, the Financial Times, the Telegraph – you’d be hard pressed to name a media outlet that Ateh Jewel (BA 2000) hasn’t written for. Ateh is best known as a beauty journalist, but during her incredible 20-year career she has also written about politics, culture, wellbeing and everything in between. She has used her platform to kickstart difficult discussions around institutional racism and to act as a diversity advocate.

This year, she launched the Dr Ateh Jewel Education Foundation, which aims to help generations of Black and mixed-Black heritage students enter and thrive in higher education. We caught up with Ateh to learn more about her time at Bristol, her career highlights and the advice she gives to her young twin daughters.

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Bristol alumna, Dr Melanie Etti, receives Harvard University Fulbright Award

Alumna, Dr Melanie Etti (BSc 2010, MBChB 2013), has received The Fulbright Nursten Award in Medical Studies, one of the most well-regarded scholarship programmes in the world.

Melanie was selected from a strong applicant pool to complete a Master of Public Health at Harvard University with a focus on global health. Her interest in health and disease developed during her time as junior doctor and while studying Pathology and Microbiology at the University of Bristol.

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Bristol alumni launch friend-finder app to help tackle loneliness

Two University of Bristol alumni have launched a friend-finding app called fethr. The app, which aims to tackle loneliness, links up like-minded individuals by analysing their personality, values, interests, and friendship preferences.

Bristol Geography graduate, Julian Issa (MSci 2014), former Maths and Philosophy student, Miguel Bravo (BSc 2013) and their flatmate, Gerardo Rodriguez, came up with the idea for fethr during the first UK lockdown. The trio were discussing loneliness and realised that they had felt isolated long before the pandemic struck.

As a business analyst, Julian had lived in 10 cities in just two years, which made it difficult to form friendships. After carrying out further research, he discovered that 45% of adults in England felt lonely at least some of the time.

“Meaningful human connection shouldn’t be such a difficult thing to find in the 21st century and that is why we started fethr,” said Julian.

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