From Learner To Earner

Sophie Milliken announced winner in Female Entrepreneur category at FL National Awards

The FL National Awards & Summit, now in its 10th year, held its regional finals on Friday 20thSeptember in Newcastle, covering Yorkshire, North East and Scotland.


Designed to demonstrate enterprise, talent and innovation from across the region’s thriving business community, the annual National Awards & Summit has become one of the most recognised and well-attended business awards in the region.


56 shortlisted applicants competed for ten prestigious awards, in categories across all sectors including Emerging Leader, Start Up, Charity/Social Enterprise, Mentor of the Year and more. Forward Ladies Managing Director, Griselda Togobo, explained: “Since launching in 2009, these are the only business awards to recognise those leaders and organisations who have made the greatest impact on the regional and wider UK economy over the last 12 months. For another year running, we have received some excellent entries from businesses large and small, and from individuals at all stages in their career journey. All of those who were shortlisted this year can be immensely proud of their success and all they have achieved.”


The shortlisted applicants in each of the categories were invited to an exclusive awards lunch on Friday 20thSeptember at the Crowne Plaza, Newcastle. The winners from this, and the other regional finals, will then be invited to appear before a live panel of independent judges in November, followed by the National Grand Final in Leeds on 29th November.


On winning the Female Entrepreneur category, Newcastle-based SRS MD Sophie Milliken commented: “I am delighted to have won in a category that is so close to my heart. It is an excellent recognition of what is turning out to be a record year for SRS on many levels. I cant wait to represent our region and attend the grand final in December”.


The awards were delighted to welcome back one of last year’s judges Sahar Hashemi, Founder of Coffee Republic. Commenting on the event, Sahar said: “I absolutely love the Forward Ladies awards. I remember the first time I attended a few years ago and entering the room as the speaker – I couldn't believe the buzz and the energy. But then again it’s no surprise that so many high achieving women in one room could create an unbelievably high octane, inspiring atmosphere. Every year it gets better and better.” “As a judge, I get so much inspiration and positive energy from meeting the incredible women shortlisted for awards. So here’s to another fabulous year - the future is female and you are all living proof - you go ladies!”


From Learner to Earner Newcastle Book Launch

On Thursday 19thSeptember, The Great Hall at Northumbria University played host to the official book launch for graduate recruitment and employability expert, Sophie Milliken’s first book. From Learner to Earner (available now through all good book stockists) is the recruitment insider’s guide to job success and helps students and graduates looking to secure their first job. 


Guests from local universities and employers attended the event and were treated to goody bags which included a copy of the book and bespoke cupcakes featuring the book cover. Pro-Vice Chancellor, Lucy Winskell OBE opened the speeches sharing her thoughts on the importance of employability and how vital it is for students today. She also shared some of her favourite excerpts from Sophie’s book, highlighting a couple of gems that she felt applied to her own career.


In Sophie’s speech, she shared her experience of writing a book and how much she enjoyed it. She spoke passionately about how employability helps to level the playing field for all students and can have a positive impact on social mobility. Her big aim is to see employability embedded in every course at every UK university. To support this aim, Sophie revealed she will be writing a textbook version of the book which can be used by academics to teach employability as a module.


The London book launch takes place on Thursday 26th September at the Institute of Student Employers and this will be followed by a national university book tour in 2020.