The Xcel awards will be presented by TV presenter Konnie Huq with an exclusive performance also from Kelly Rowland. Alexander Rose is amongst the thousands of student nominations received from universities throughout the UK, ranging from Oxbridge and the Russell Group, to a university not even five years old. The winners chosen for Xcel Student of The Year Awards have overcome many personal and physical hurdles to achieve their own academic success and their remarkable stories are an inspiration to students from all backgrounds.
The overall Student of the Year, Alexander Rose is one of five children from a lone parent family growing up on what he describes as a ‘rough council estate’. His mother, a care worker, is his inspiration but despite being from a very loving family he was nearly drawn into a gang. Alex grew up on an estate, and went to a school, where carrying a knife to “protect yourself” was routine. Five of his school friends have been killed by gangs. Two years ago, one of Alex’s best friends – a 16 year old boy – was stabbed for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Making a stand Alexander Rose used his considerable design talent to produce fashionable t shirts and
materials that appeal to young people, to carry the anti-violence message. In January, Alex was invited to meet the Prime Minister at No 10 and is an adviser to government policy maker on youth issues. He has also recently been awarded an Anne Frank Award for Humanitarianism for his work on campaigning against gun and knive crime and using art and design education as a way of showing young people that there are alternatives to gang membership.
Xcel Magazine was launched over three years ago with the support of the then Commission for Racial Equality, (now Equality and Human Rights Commission). Xcel’s aim is to offer its student readership, from a multi-ethnic background, advice on all aspects of achieving course and career success. The publication also promotes student lifestyle and celebrates the work of successful role models.
Xcel’s Editor, Emma Salt, said “Alexander Rose is the embodiment of Xcel. His ‘can do’ attitude and courageous approach to create change, in the face of extreme personal adversity, is an inspiration to us all!”