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Alumni Profile

Uday Dholakia

Uday Dholakia

BSc Combined Science 1984

From proud East African roots and settled in the South East of England, Uday came to Sunderland in 1984 to pursue his passion for business where he completed an HND and successfully transferred to a Combined Science BSc.

Entrepreneurial to the core, Uday spent much of his younger life setting up cinema clubs in Brighton so that youngsters had time to fill on a Saturday evening. He forged a name for himself whilst at the University, organising nights out for students in Newcastle (anyone remember the Tuxedo Princess?) and working on various start up ventures.

His interest in enterprise took him to work with colleagues in Durham and mix with well known business names of Wearside. Uday utilised every new opportunity to build himself a network and this, he says, is why he ended up securing a job in the Midlands working on enterprise and business start ups and since then he has never looked back.

Uday returned to the University in early 2014 giving an inspirational lecture to current business students.  The University was also humbled that he gifted over some University memorabilia that he had found at a flea market. An 80 year old antique plinth was originally presented to the Sunderland Technical College Old Students Association in 1934 and was spotted in the 1980’s by Uday.  

“Deep in my heart I had wanted to bring it back to Sunderland for years. The request to speak to students gave me the opportunity to present it to its rightful owner where it will become part of the University for posterity and this has made me humbly proud of my links with Sunderland”.

In his current role as Chair of the British Asian Business Association Uday spans a large network of businesses who are looking to develop stronger linkages in the regions and play a transformational role in the community.

In addition to this, he is a widely renowned expert on better regulation in industry and a former Vice - Chair of the Leicestershire & Rutland Police Authority and is currently a trustee of Twycross Zoo and a designated SME Expert by the European Commission.  He continues to support the University by speaking about his exceptional career and inspiring the next generation of Sunderland students.

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