02 Aug 2017: Farewell to Nadia Butt!
DM’s National Coordinator moves on to pastures new
It is with a heavy heart, that we wave farewell to Nadia Butt, who has worked with us at the Academy of Ideas for the past two years. Making an indispensable contribution to both the Debating Matters Competition and Battle of Ideas festival, Nadia’s thorough organisation was perhaps only trumped by her mastery of the art of the selfie.
Nadia leaves us for a role with educational charity Generating Genius, and as she departs we recall first meeting her as a bright young student from Grimsby, as part of the Franklin College team in 2010/11.
Nadia graduated from the University of Birmingham in 2014 where she gained a first-class degree in Philosophy and Political Science, joining DM after spending seven months as an operations graduate for Cambridge International Examinations. Nadia brought much gusto to the team, dipping her hand into every part of the competition’s organisation. Nadia did everything from overseeing logistics and coordinating venues to managing our national network of judges. Nadia played a key role in a number of special projects, including our EU Referendum Debate, DM Berlin and DM Beyond Bars. However, Nadia’s biggest impact was perhaps in her management of the competition’s alumni programme, which has grown in both number and character during her time at the helm. We’re sure Nadia has made a number of friends for life amongst the alumni and will be sorely missed.
Nadia also had a profound impact on the Battle of Ideas festival, where she masterfully oversaw the festival volunteers, as well as working on sessions that saw her become an expert on an eclectic mix of topics from gravitational waves to John Stuart Mill.
Nadia was never afraid to work hard, throwing herself into heavy lifting as the self-proclaimed ‘strongest man in the office’, yet she also didn’t take herself too seriously, never passing up an opportunity for karaoke (‘Gold Digger’ being a classic, ‘Hotline Bling’ less so). She enthusiastically took on the job of putting up the Christmas tree and will leave Adam all alone when it comes to Christmas jumpers.
Whilst we won’t miss her extensive dietary requirements when booking an office meal (how do you cater for a vegan who eats chicken?), the whole Academy of Ideas team will miss the infectious charm she brought to the office as well as being lost without her methodical organisation.
From everyone at the Academy of Ideas, good luck, and we know tremendous success awaits you in the future!