Alumni Awards - 2016 winners

The University of South Wales community - graduates and students alike - is filled with people making a difference at all levels of society, worldwide. Be that in business or industry, society or culture – or right here on our doorstep within the University.


The USW Alumni Awards recognise the excellence and achievement of individuals within our network. The actions of our alumni reflect the excellence of a USW education and our mission to provide not only innovative education and world class graduates, but also culturally aware global citizens making positive strides.

We're delighted to announce category winners for 2016:

Inspiring The Next Generation Award

Alumnus Hamed Amiri, Target Group Hamed Amiri  - BSc (Hons) Computer Science, 2011

Development Team Leader, Target Group 

Originally from Afghanistan and having overcome personal adversity to arrive in the UK, Hamed demonstrates high levels of commitment to USW through this work - be it sharing knowledge as a guest speaker or inspiring final year students to stretch to their greatest potential. He frequently draws on his own personal journey as a case study and champions the facilities and experiences of USW. On graduating he joined CGI and was instrumental in getting his former employer to invest in the KESS programme, which resulted in funding for a PhD student for three years.

Excellence in Service Award

Alumna Emma Richards, Freelance Emma Richards  - BA (Hons) Photography, 2016

Freelance, ERichards Photos

Emma’s professionalism is highly rated across the various roles she carries out within the USW community and her work as a Student Ambassador - in the face of her own personal issues - has been described as inspiring. The support she gives to other students, helping them prepare for deadlines and exams is highly regarded, as is her role in acting as intermediary between her peers and the department. Aside from her studies, Emma helps promote and is an active campaigner for better services for and awareness of mental health issues.

GOLD Award (Graduate of the Last Decade)

Alumnus Richard Pring, Wales Interactive Richard Pring  - BSc (Hons) Computer Games Development and MA Animation, 2010

Technical Director, Wales Interactive Ltd 

A pioneer in Wales’ most exciting and fastest developing creative industries, Richard - as a co-founder of Wales Interactive – and has attained impressive achievements in only 5 years. This peaked in 2013 when he was awarded a BAFTA. With many of his games achieving critical acclaim, Richard has been a key figure in advising the Government’s policy on Digital Development and his work has culminated in organising and running The Welsh Games Development Show for the last 5 years.

Distinguished Alumni Award

Alumnus Martin Smith, Alcumus Group Martin Smith - BA (Hons) Public Administration, 1991

Chief Executive, Alcumus Group

An experienced leader and governance, risk and compliance sector specialist, Martin is at the forefront of a market-leading provider of technology-enabled compliance risk management, certification and accreditation services. Formed initially through the integration of small, carefully chosen companies; Alcumus’ exponential growth now sees it serve over 32,000 clients, including 35% of the FTSE 100, and provides services which are critical to compliance. Martin has come full circle back to South Wales with the company’s most recent acquisition, resulting in over half of the company’s workforce now being located in Treforest. As a champion of local talent he continues to support a number of university initiatives.