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UEA student shortlisted for top award

PUBLISHED: 10:47 20 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:52 02 July 2010

An international student from the University of East Anglia has been selected as the regional winner in the British Council's International Student Awards 2010.

An international student from the University of East Anglia has been selected as the regional winner in the British Council's International Student Awards 2010.

Whilst at university she has raised £200,000 for her home country, Burkina Faso in Africa, attended the Copenhagen Conference as a delegate and even met President Barack Obama.

Rose Melissa Ilboudo, 24, who is in her third year of a degree in international development, was shortlisted out of 1,300 students from 120 countries, for the final stage of the awards after submitting a letter to her family which described her student life at UEA.

She began to work with Christian Aid and this led to her involvement in a series of fundraising activities such as canoeing, running the London Marathon, a triathlon, camping, giving talks in schools and churches and working with the local media.

When Miss Ilboudo realised that she needed to make £20,000 within 18 months to receive EU match funding she set her heart on completing this task. After just 10 months she had raised a staggering £50,000, which once quadrupled led to a fantastic total of £200,000.

Miss Ilboudo said: “Many Christian volunteers, classmates and friends took part in the marathon and triathlon and we have had enormous support from churches in East Anglia and schools who have all contributed to the fundraising.”

In her letter Miss Ilboudo also discussed her involvement in the climate change summit in Copenhagen where she shook President Obama's hand.

The national final for the award will take place in London on April 21. The 12 finalists will receive a £1,000 cash prize as well as a trophy and certificate.

“It is a very impressive achievement” said Dr Steven Russell, director of teaching and learning in the school of international development at UEA.

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