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Annual Fund News

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SU Enterprise Students Queen's University Belfast
Supporting student entrepreneurship
Helping to make student business ideas happen

At Queen’s, we recognise that many students with the capacity to become successful business owners might not consider the option of entrepreneurship, while many others don’t realise how valuable strong enterprise skills and aptitudes have become within employment environments. Queen’s Students Union, Graduate School and QUBIS work in partnership to deliver a range of programmes which inspire students to consider entrepreneurship, engage them in activities to develop their skills, and accelerates those who have strong business ideas or entrepreneurial skills to achieve success. An important part of these programmes is giving students, like Kieron, the opportunity to pitch for seed funding to enhance their business idea.


"During my time at Queen's I'm lucky to have received support from multiple programmes through SU Enterprise and also from the Annual Fund, to launch my mobile app business idea, so I wanted to take a moment to say thank you very much for all the support - you allow students such as myself to pursue their ideas." Kieron
Student Entrepreneur

Kieron on SU Enterprise

“Through programmes such as the Make it Happen Fund and Dragon’s Den, I’ve received funding to work on an idea that I’ve had since first year called ‘Nights Out.’ This is a mobile app that’s exclusive to students and it allows them to see where is busiest with their peers. This should allow students to save money and enjoy their university experience as much as possible.”

Learn more about enterprise at Queen's
SU Volunteer
Community impact and neighbourhood engagement
Art Alley and QFT transformation project

The Art Alley project promotes social cohesion by energising local student and non-student residents to find common ground and take pride and ownership of the physical area. Queen’s student volunteers, staff and residents joined forces to tidy, paint and plant along the University Square Mews, add a sensory garden area and transform the space into a vibrant, welcoming space that residents, students and employees can enjoy together. Improving the immediate physical environment of the alleyway facilitates positive student-resident interaction, fostering the sense of community in the area.

“I'm a member of the Handy Helpers, which primarily works on green initiatives and sustainable work around Queen's. We have been working on projects such as planters and clean ups and wall painting etc. to beautify and make a sustainable area around Queen's. It's been a pleasure working with the students and mentors here in the society and it's been an endearing experience for me as a student. Thank you so much to the Queen's Annual Fund for supporting this project and keeping it active.” Teju
Member of the Handy Helpers Project

Teju on the Handy Helpers Society at Queen's

"It’s been a pleasure working around the students and mentors here in the society – it’s been a really enjoyable experience for me as a student of Queen’s."

Supporting female success in engineering
Women in engineering panel discussion

The Women in Engineering event hosted 4 guest speakers: a female professor of Structural Engineering within Queen’s, a former PhD student who now works closely with Stage 3 Civil Engineering students on the Design and Communications 3 module and working in industry, and two who are working in industry; one with a university background and the other an apprenticeship background. The event was organised to promote female success, look at how engineering has developed to become more inclusive, challenges faced, whilst ensuring a positive and celebratory environment for past and future female engineering students throughout Queen’s.

“The Queen's Engineering Society had the privilege to be supported by the Queen’s Annual fund, receiving funding towards the Women in Engineering event, which was held as a discussion forum, creating relaxed conversation and allowing female students to ask questions which may not be spoken about enough for their careers in the future ( for example, equal pay, discrimination in the workplace, or returning to work after having a child).” Sophie
President of Queen's University Belfast Engineering Society
Enhancing student skills in Centre for Public Health
Podcast series for people with visual impairments

The project is in early stages but interactions between staff and students have been very positive with students able to apply their knowledge and learning to this real-life project which will help the people of Northern Ireland, particularly those with Visual Impairment, keep up to date with Eye Health news and scientific developments in the field of Ophthalmology. Ultimately the hard work of the staff and students during this project has enhanced working relationships across a diverse range of staff and student groups with the added bonus that the people of Northern Ireland are receiving information on Eye Health from experts in the field, hosted by enthusiastic students.

“This funding has allowed us to connect, collaborate and communicate with a much wider audience. The podcast has generated a lot of interest from both students and the public and will be officially launched at our annual Patient Engagement Day this year. This project will be hugely beneficial to all those involved, giving students experience in podcasting and interviewing and we hope to use this in the coming years to widen the circle of research and engagement. We could not have achieved this without the help and support given by Queen's Annual Fund." Barbara
Research Assistant, Belfast Ophthalmic Reading Centre
Supporting student mental Health and Wellbeing
Mindfulness and wellbeing workshops for mature students

The project focused on wellbeing and positive mental health, as the added responsibilities that mature students often face can create additional pressure. Mature students can often have more complex circumstances than that of other members of the student body. Circumstances can include caring for elderly parents, children, and other family commitments. By organising wellbeing and positive mental health workshops, the Widening Participation Unit (WPU) is supporting these students to cope with balancing their studies and their personal responsibilities.

“I was luckily awarded these funds, which allowed me to organise and deliver 4 mindfulness events around topics such as “Getting a Good Night’s Sleep”, “Avoiding Stress & Burnout” and “Understanding Stress & Anxiety”. These events were attended by mature students from across the University, who benefitted greatly from these extra resources for support. It was lovely to see these students socialising and building relationships in such a meaningful way. I would like to thank the Queen’s Annual Fund and its supporters for providing the funds for this successful project." Clodagh
Outreach Assistant, Widening Participation Unit
Helping students lead a healthy, active lifestyle
Rugby, rowing, tennis, karate, caving, volleyball, athletics, netball, dance, wakeboard and waterski

Your donations have helped sport’s clubs and societies across campus to launch new initiatives, purchase much needed equipment and take part in different competitions and tournaments. This helps students to lead a healthy, active lifestyle whether they are playing for fun or playing to win. One of the highlights was the Irish Intervarsity Climbing Competition, hosted and attended by QUB’S Mountaineering Club. 210 students from 10 universities and colleges from across Ireland competed in 2 climbing disciplines, with 27 of those students representing Queen’s University Belfast.

The Queen's Annual Fund helped the Mountaineering Club to host the Irish Intervarsity Climbing Competition 2023. Without this support we would not have been able to pay for the venue hire and route setting fees. It gave not only our members, but 300 other students members of various Irish university mountaineering/climbing clubs, the opportunity to compete on a national level on behalf of their university. The training required for such a competition cannot be understated which positively affected many people’s physical fitness and mental health.” Oisín
Gear Secretary, Queen's Mountaineering Club
Preparing a new generation of healthcare professionals
Practical skills gained in state-of-the-art ‘Intersim’ facility

The KN Cheung SK Chin InterSim Centre is a cutting-edge simulation facility at Queen’s University Belfast, offering a unique environment that promotes excellence in simulation-based healthcare education. The generous support of a distinguished group of donors has helped to establish this unique Simulation Centre.

The event attracted students from backgrounds including paramedic students, medical students and nursing students from both Ulster University and Queen’s University Belfast. This encouraged multi-Disciplinary working which mirrors the working environment in the NHS. In the first part of the morning, we had talks from the Medical Lead for the Ambulance Service, a Consultant Plastic Surgeon and a Registrar in Cardiothoracic Surgery. These talks appealed to the broad background of students who were in attendance. They covered triage of patients in a mass casualty event, burns and surgical management of trauma patients after they have come through A&E. This allowed students to gain academic knowledge for their studies and in particular talking to the junior registrar about how to access certain career pathways after graduation. 

In the second part of the day, we ran a number of practical workshops, including: paediatric basic life support, cardiac arrest simulation, airway management and a visit from the Fire and Rescue Service where students learnt about how the fire service can play a crucial role as first responders in emergencies. Overall, we received fantastic feedback. The paramedic students felt that the practical aspects were highly relevant to their future careers and also enjoyed learning more about the medical management beyond A&E. We hope this has encouraged more students to consider careers in the fields of emergency medicine and anaesthetics and that students have been engaged further in their academic work through fun, interactive extra-curricular activities. 

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“SCRUBS is the largest medical society at Queen's and each year we organise events to help students engage in learning and gain skills for work and exams. We held the Emergency Medicine Conference in February 2023, where students had the opportunity to learn from qualified doctors and practice skills such as airways, paediatric life support and cardiac arrest management in the state of the art 'InterSim' suite. The generous contributions from Queen's Annual Fund allowed us to run an event which attracted over 60 students including Queen's students and Ulster University Paramedic students." Rachael
Emergency Medicine Co-Ordinator, SCRUBS Medical Society
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