Talent Award 2014

On Thursday 24 April, Kelly Smet and Sarah Denis were announced the winners of the Schelstraete Delacourt Associates Talent Award 2014. The 14th edition of this event – the first under the new corporate name – took place in the exclusive setting of the Royal Museums of Art and History in Brussels.

Kelly Smet from KU Leuven won the award for the best Dutch-language thesis, entitled “Have you heard about ...: the role of rumours in explaining the cross-lagged relationships between organizational communication and job insecurity”. Sarah Denis of the University of Liège was awarded the prize for her thesis in French on “Antécédents et conséquences de la perception d’un plafond de verre chez les femmes managers.” (History and consequences of the perception of a glass ceiling among women managers).

Schelstraete Delacourt Associates Talent Award is presented in cooperation with nine universities and higher education establishments. Each of the educational establishments puts forward one candidate to enter his or her thesis in the competition. The participating establishments are: Universiteit Antwerpen, KU Leuven, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Universiteit Gent, Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel, Hogeschool Gent, Université Catholique de Louvain, Université de Liège and Université Libre de Bruxelles.

The nine theses were judged by a panel consisting of one representative from each higher education establishment, supplemented by HR professionals from the business world. Mr. Jan Van Hootegem, Group HR Director at Vandemoortele, presided the Dutch-language jury. On the French-language jury, this role was performed by Mr. Pierre Bracconier, VP Employee HR Services at GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals.

"All the jury members agreed on one thing", said Jan Van Hootegem. "The entrants all did a tremendous job. One of the fascinating things in the HR community is to meet students and thus create a link between business and academia."

It is always with great pleasure that Pierre Braconnier reads the theses. “This year too, there is enormous variety in the topics, ranging from innovation and well-being, to the role of women in HR".

Besides a prize of € 1,000, both winners will be mentored for a year by an HR professional from the business world. Kelly will be mentored by Mr. Jos Destrooper, Corporate HR Director at Lotus Bakeries, while French-language winner Sarah will be mentored by Mr. Peter Vosch, Senior HR Director EMEA & India at Ansell.

Kelly and Sarah are looking forward to acquiring practical experience, while it will be a challenge for the mentors to introduce them to the realities of the business world, and the role that HR plays in it.

24 April 2014