St Hilda's College
College news

33rd Annual Rachel McLean Awards

31 May 2024

rachel mclean awards

The Rachel McLean Award is given annually to an individual who has "improved college life and/or raised the profile of the college within the university," commemorating the life of second-year English student Rachel McLean and her positive impact on the college community. The award is now in its 33rd year. In addition to members of the student body, the awards were attended by the Principal, Senior Tutor, Dean, and several past winners, all showing their gratitude for the contributions of each nominee. The nominees were as follows:

Atharva Mahajan, Second-Year Physics Student

Atharva is well-known and liked by many students. He often greets friends with a fist bump and offers advice and collaboration to other STEM students. He has represented Hilda’s in numerous competitions, such as the Integration Bee 2023 and 2024, Planck's Preliminary Round and International Finals 2023 and 2024, Physics Brawl International, and the Citadel Europe Datathon, ranking highly and traveling internationally. Atharva was elected to the Student Union, representing the college politically. He is a caring friend who will take on extra labor during punting trips or cycle to distant stores when needed.


Safa Saeed, Second-Year Law Student

Safa, the current JCR VP and former Oxford LawSoc VP, is known for her social nature and positive attitude. She has impeccable attendance at college events and is passionate about Hilda’s, fostering a positive community. She has gone above and beyond in her VP role.


Cassandra Wicks, Third-Year English Language and Literature Student

Cassie revived the St Hilda's Drama Society after it was dormant for five years, serving as president. She has produced and directed multiple productions, raising the college's profile in the Oxford drama scene. Cassie is also the OUDS St Hilda's representative, organizing drama cuppers teams, and encouraging other students to produce work. She has organized successful arts events and managed the St Hilda's Arts Magazine for two years. Cassie also serves as Vice-President of Logistics on the Ball Committee and ran the St Hilda's Poetry Club and Book Club.


Eva Fidler, First-Year Music Student

Eva is a positive and friendly presence, known for her participation in several bands and jazz orchestras, furthering the college’s status in the Oxford musical scene.


Scarlett Burley, Second-Year Biology Student

Scarlett is a proud Hildabeast who goes out of her way to make people feel welcome. She represents Hilda's in various sports, takes extra papers for her Biology degree, and serves as the JCC student rep for Biology. Scarlett volunteers at St. Aidens RSPB Reserve, showing her generosity and care for the world around her.


Sejal Kumar, Third-Year Medicine Student

Sejal introduced Hindu cultural events to the college, such as Holi and Diwali, organizing these events alone. She is known for her cheerful and kind nature and promotes diversity and inclusivity within the college. Sejal's work as Hindu rep for the Sanctuary upholds these values.


Robert Dowsett, Third-Year Classics Student

Rob is a hard worker and a strong presence in the college library. He excels academically and in sports, representing Hilda’s in football, rugby, cricket, mixed lacrosse, and canoe polo. Rob led the football team to a strong season and is known for his camaraderie across the college.


Emma Davis, Second-Year German and Linguistics Student

Emma is known for her friendly and positive demeanour. She goes above and beyond in her academic work, participates in sports, and serves as a languages department ambassador. Emma excelled as Freshers’/Finalists’ Rep and is a reliable and compassionate individual, always willing to help others.


The Winner

Carys Hoggan, Third-Year PPL Student

Carys promotes St Hilda's through open days, school tours, and access work within the university. As Ball President, she created the first Vice President Access and Equality role and allowed students from other colleges to obtain access tickets. Carys also helps with the Drama Society, writes blogs for That Oxford Girl, and is a Zero Gravity mentor. She raised funds through an inclusive fashion show and works with the government on access and inclusion in education. Carys also participated in a national research project on loneliness and belonging at university.

Congratulations Carys!

Carys Hoggan,