Five individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the community were awarded Middlesex Medals this week as part of the University’s first in-person graduation ceremonies in two years.
The Awards were launched in March 2022 at Vice Chancellor Professor Nic Beech’s inauguration. They are part of MDX’s Strategy 2031 which recognises people whose work aligns with the University’s core values, work and future plans.
Nathan Dua, a Segment Manager and professional photographer who works for Canon, received his Award on Monday in recognition of his tireless work with the Faculty of Arts and Creative Industries at MDX.
The former UK Ministry of Defence photographer works to inspire the future generation of creators within the UK higher education sector and has created a wealth of unique opportunities for MDX students, graduates and staff to co-create with Canon.
Nathan said: “I feel very honoured to have even been considered for recognition of my work with Middlesex University which has always been focused on providing meaningful value to all students and staff.
“Using Canon’s corporate philosophy of “Kyosei” living and working together for the common good, combined with Middlesex University’s forward thinking, inclusive approach, allowed us to try new ways in which to engage students and industry.
“My advice to graduating students would be don’t do things because that’s how they are always done. Be true to yourself and don’t be afraid to start with a blank piece of paper and see where it takes you!”
Helen Goulden received her Award on Wednesday, for her work as Chief Executive Officer of the Young Foundation and for Nesta, which align closely with Middlesex’s priorities.
Helen’s interest in inclusive approaches to innovation and specialisms in technology as a tool for social change and public and social innovation match with Middlesex’s three themes around - Equity in Health and Wellbeing, Socioeconomic Development and Sustainability.
She said: “It was such a surprise, and so thrilling to be awarded a Middlesex Medal. It is clear that my own organistion and the university are fellow travellers in wanting to see a more diverse, inclusive - and frankly more relevant - approach to innovation.
"Too often we can get locked in outdated models and mindsets that perpetuate inequality, and which do nothing to bring people closer to opportunities to take more action on the issues they care about. Unleashing our social imagination in collaboration with others to navigate very difficult social challenges is one of the most important competencies we can develop in this half of the 21st Century.”
Esmond Rosen was also awarded a Middlesex Medal in recognition of his important work as President of the Barnet Multifaith Forum. The MDX panel values the partnership and the joint goal to create fairer, more inclusive societies.
Recent collaborations include the Barnet Faith and Belief Awards, which brought the community together, at a time when this feels more important than ever.
Esmond said: “I am extremely honoured and proud to have been acknowledged with this unique Award from Middlesex University.
“The values we share together of creating a fairer more inclusive society based upon collaboration and partnership stimulates and encourages communities and students to work towards constructing a healthier and safer world.
“My message to the wonderful students of Middlesex University is to seek every opportunity to enrich your opportunities to engage with others to enhance the planet we live on.”
MDX alumna Chris Caldwell, Chief Nurse North London Integrated Care Board, received an Award for her tireless work for equity and improvements in health and wellbeing.
Chris’ leadership in healthcare and education has a strong focus on collaboration in particular to build a pan London approach to building and sustaining high quality nursing. The success of the Capital Nursing Programme and the continual growth in Chris’ contributions to a wide range of themes including mental health align closely to MDX’s institutional ambitions.
On Thursday, Babak Jahanbani, Managing Director of Didactic Services Ltd (formerly Festo Didactic) received his award.
His medal nomination comes as a result of a significant contribution in championing the University’s work, and advocating for Middlesex as experts in automation and mechatronics. The University values its partnership with Didactic Ltd as the company offers guidance and support for curriculum design, joint lab provision, large scale outreach activities and ongoing staff training. It has also facilitated the Smart Automation Lab in MDX’s Ritterman Building.
Babak said: “It is quite an honour to receive this from Middlesex University, recognising the longstanding relationship with Festo which stretches over 26 years.
“Our relationship has gone far beyond that of a supplier/partner. Whilst the University has invested heavily in Festo range of learning systems, but the greater impact has been in the effective use of these in its engineering programme and systems that cover technologies that manufacturers are in desperate need of.
“Festo along with Middlesex has been involved with the World Skills UK competition. Our collaboration has seen the competition go from strength to strength. We are grateful to Prof Karamanoglu for his hard work and dedication.”