By Justin Bowie.
A Strathclyde Student won a prestigious international undergraduate award.
Melissa Alexander, who studied English Literature, was the winner in the Literature category of the Undergraduate Awards 2015, which aim to identify creative thinkers through their coursework, providing top-performing students with support and opportunities.
Melissa’s paper examined why people enjoy reading, and what it is that results in it being an absorbing experience for them.
She said: “In analysing how we construct a sense of ‘space’ when we read stories, my main question was whether the reader feels ‘presence’ in the text, as if we were a virtual participant in the events, or whether we feel as if we were seeing the events unfolding in front of us.”
Melissa was one of only 25 winners, with a total of more than 5,100 submissions from undergraduates in 39 different countries. She received her award at the global summit for the awards in Dublin from President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins.
She added, “I could never have written this paper without the guidance and advice of my supervisor, Dr Elspeth Jajdelska.”
“The entire faculty of English at Strathclyde has been incredibly helpful and supportive, always ready to take the time to discuss new ideas with me and encourage me in my interests.
“I feel so lucky to be studying here and would highly recommend the University to prospective students.”
Louise Hodgson, Executive Director of the Undergraduate Awards, said, “This was our most competitive year to date, with more submissions than ever. Melissa has done extraordinarily well to receive this medal, which recognises her as a global leader in her research field.”
Melissa is now studying a Literature, Culture and Place Masters at Strathclyde.