Thank you

Thank you to everyone that has given their time so generously to support current students and the University; your advice, experience and support is incredibly appreciated by all of us at The University of Sheffield.

Volunteer Thank You Event

Each year we hold a celebratory event to recognise alumni that have given their time to support the students the previous academic year.

Alumni are able to network with students and staff that have benefited from their support during a drinks reception, enjoy a campus tour, and even find out about upcoming opportunities to stay involved. During the event, the Alumni Volunteer Awards are announced, recognising alumni that have gone above and beyond in their support.

Our recent Thank You Evening was held on 14 March 2018. The event was hosted by Professor Dame Pamela Shaw, who welcomed over 100 alumni and friends of the University to thank them for their generosity over the past year, either by volunteering or through philanthropic support. Click here to see more about our 2018 Thank You event

Thank You Evening Networking 2018

Thank You Group Conversation 2018

Air Vice Marshall Allan Johnson 2018

Alumni Volunteer Awards

The Alumni Volunteer of the Year Awards are presented at the annual Thank You Evening, and serve to recognise and thank outstanding volunteers who have gone above and beyond in their support.

Alumni volunteers are nominated by staff, students, and other alumni and shortlisted by a panel made up of alumni, student and university representatives.

The Alumni Volunteer of the Year Award categories are:

  • Pioneering Alumni Award 
  • Alumni Leadership Award

The 2018 Alumni Award winners were announced at the Thank You Evening for volunteering activity that predominately took place during the 2016-17 academic year. This years winners are Michael Conroy, MA Town & Regional Planning, 2016 (Pioneering Alumni Award) and Andrew Williams, BEng Metal Science & Engineering, 1989 (Alumni Leadership Award).

Click here to read about the 2018 Volunteering Award Winners.

Click here to read about the 2016 Volunteering Award Winners.

Click here to read about the 2015 Volunteering Award Winners.

Pioneering Alumni Winner Michael Conroy 2018

Nellie Wanyama Speech 2018

Alumni Leadership Award Alfie Webster on behalf of Andrew Williams

Award Categories

Pioneering Alumni Award

We are very grateful to alumni who have graduated from the University recently and come back to support current students, taking time off to volunteer early on in their careers. Recent graduate volunteers have a great impact as current or prospective students can really relate to them and ask about the current job market and securing their first role.

This award will be for a recent graduate (graduated from 2012 onwards) who:

  • Has gone above and beyond their designated role as a volunteer, showing outstanding commitment and enthusiasm.
  • Has had a significant impact (e.g. on students, an activity/project, department or faculty).
  • Has brought in specialist knowledge as a recent graduate to meet individual needs of beneficiaries and/or contribute to the University’s mission, aims or objectives (e.g. student employability).

Alumni Leadership Award

This award is for alumni volunteers that show exceptional leadership skills in their involvement with the University, often juggling personal, professional and voluntary commitments.

This award will be for an alumnus who:

  • Has gone above and beyond their designated role as a volunteer, showing outstanding commitment and enthusiasm.
  • Has had a significant and high-level impact (e.g. acting as an ambassador to promote the institution, sharing networks, opening doors or initiating new activity to support the University) .
  • Has directly contributed to the University’s mission through demonstrable support of individual needs and/or contribute to the University’s mission, aims or objectives (e.g. governance).

Nomination information

  • The nomination form is available here.
  • The nominations must be relating to activity that has predominantly taken place during the 2017-18 academic year.
  • Supporting documents, such as photos, can be sent to
  • If you require any information to support your nomination (degree details, other activities the alumnus has supported with, feedback or impact collected after the activity) please contact who may be able to provide further information on your nominee.
  • Nominations will be shortlisted and then be reviewed by a panel.
  • We will let nominees know they have been put forward for an award and entered into the Steel Circle.
  • The winners will be announced at the next Alumni Volunteers Thank You Evening

Nomination Form

Alumni Volunteer Conference

Read all about our first Alumni Volunteers Conference

In October 2016 we held a conference for our alumni volunteers.

The day conference provided volunteers with the knowledge and skills to help them to be even more effective when supporting students and the University in their volunteering roles. It was an opportunity to learn more about the priorities of the University, contribute to their personal development and is also a chance for us to show the impact alumni are having.

What did it involve?

Through a variety of talks, presentations, panels and workshops, delegates had the opportunity to hear from University leadership about the progress of the University, consider key issues for today's students, such as student employability and widening participation, learn more about the campus and history of the University, and develop their skills in mentoring & coaching, presenting for impact, and effective board membership. 

The streamed element of the conference allowed delegates to pick sessions that best met their interests and needs. The conference was an opportunity to meet other volunteers and staff, before joining even more alumni volunteers at the 2016 Alumni Volunteering Thank You Event and Awards in the evening.

Alumni at the Global Engineering Challenge

Alumni supporting students at ThinkCreate 2016

Networking at our City Connections event

The Steel Circle

The Steel CircleThe University of Sheffield's foundations were built on penny donations from the people of the city, building on this spirit and our deep-rooted heritage in the steel industry, the Steel Circle celebrates the unwavering support from the Sheffield alumni community. Alumni give the gift of time to forge strong connections with our students and help establish a solid platform for success.

In recognition of their outstanding contribution to the University in 2016/17 we are proud to announce that the following alumni volunteers are members of the Steel Circle:

2016-17 Steel Circle Members:

Caroline Airson
Mark Ansell
Mark Appleby
Deborah Baker
Susan Belcher
Christopher Cheetham
Shao Chia
Christopher Cuninghame
James Dash
Heather Davies
Andrew Donovan
Paul Drury
David Gray
Guilherme Guimaraes
Samantha Hayhurst
Joanna Hemingway
Yuen Ho
Rachel Javed
Keith Layden
Craig Locke
Ross Lowrie
Alan Marshall
Daniel Newberry
Kerry Noble

Stephanie Nuttall
Abigail Oldfield
Ian Pegram
Trevor Richards
David Smalley
Emmanuelle Stannard
Mark Taylor
Natalie Tomlinson
Jibraan Ullah
Athanassios Vratimos
Christopher Welch
Sarah Wheater
Luke Wilson
Rebecca Woolley

2015-16 Steel Circle Members:

Oluwole Afolayan
Mark Appleby
Deborah Baker
Ilan Bass
Heather Bellamy
Sue Bird
Louise Bloomfield
David Clark
Sarah Colley
Jennifer Coppock
Christopher Cuninghame
Heather Davies
Sofia Derossi
Everard Edwards
Susan Fearn
Claire Gaffney
David Gray
Katy Greatbatch
Elias Haddouche
Elizabeth Jarrett
Ciaran Jones
Madhu Kavilikatta
Nick Kennard
Kathryn Lynne

Gorakh Mal
Simon Marchant
Ross Marshall
Claudia Mazza
Neil McLean
Daniel Newberry
Ian Pegram
Georg Peitchev
Joshua Piggott-Smith
Jordan Piper
Jerin Rajan
Catherine Rankine
Trevor Richards
Katherine Ritchie
Richard Roberts
Amy Robson
Mary Snowdon
Andrew Stewart
Vanessa Swift
Cassandra Terry
Natalie Tomlinson
Jane Turner
Sarah Wheater
Paul Wood
Meng Yu

For more information about volunteering at the University of Sheffield, please take a look at our Current Opportunities Web page.