A FINAL year psychology student from Kidderminster has been rewarded by specialist global insurer, Hiscox for her contribution to its workplace design competition.

Jennifer Bruerton, 20, is studying at York St John University. She worked closely with Andrew Cannon, the overall winner of the Hiscox design competition with his sustainable "aquaponic" meeting point design Aqua Tower.

Studying in her final year for a Bsc (Hons) Psychology degree, Ms Bruerton was acting psychology consultant in the project, carrying out research into behaviour patterns of office-based employees to support the product design process.

She has been awarded cash by the design team at Hiscox, who are responsible for bringing Hiscox’s new landmark building to the city.

The Tomorrow’s Workplace competition gave five York St John University psychology students, in collaboration with 10 design students, the opportunity to pitch product or environment design ideas that could be displayed or utilised in the new building, which will open in 2015.

Ms Bruerton said: “The competition has given me the chance to work with another discipline in the university and to gain an insight into professional environments.

"We were lucky enough to experience workshops delivered by their teams, which were supported by trips to London for tours around Arup, Hiscox, Make and Vitra, who are the companies involved in the Hiscox build.

"As a soon-to-be graduate, it was inspiring to have a snapshot of the non-academic world and to be a part of a tangible project of which I am excited to see the results in the near future.”

Jenny Hall, creative business development manager at York St John University, said: “With the competition, Hiscox was particularly interested to understand how to develop and enhance the workplace through the use of informal office space areas.

"Understanding the behavioural patterns and attitudes of their employees toward these types of spaces is intrinsic to the design of their new building on Hungate.

Jennifer’s research input was invaluable in helping develop this understanding and we are pleased her contribution has been recognised.”