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Virginia van West


Personal Information

Peer Year

1998

Maiden Name

Pidgeon

Town / City

London

Country

United Kingdom


About Virginia

Profession

Currently employed

Industry

Technology

Position

Manager, RFP Assist Content and Communications at SAP Concur

Additional info

I left NZ at the end of fifth form to train at the Hungarian Ballet Academy in Budapest, after receiving a TVNZ Young Achiever’s Award for ballet. I also studied at the NZ Ballet Academy and at the Ecole Supérieure de Danse de Cannes Rosella Hightower in France. After sustaining an ankle injury, my career direction changed and I discovered the world of corporate travel management and proposal writing - working for both Carlson Wagonlit Travel and BCD Travel in Paris, and more recently for Key Travel and SAP Concur in London. I married in 2007, separated in 2019 and have an eight-year-old son, in addition to two stepchildren now attending university. I hold three nationalities, including NZ, French and British (my son has Belgian nationality as well!), and speak fluent French. I currently work in the technology sector and manage a small international team, who work on large enterprise Expense, Invoice and Travel deals at SAP Concur. I’m a member of the NZ Business Women’s Network in London, and enjoy catching up with St Cuthbert’s Old Girls at their events.

How would I like to connect?

I'd love to connect socially, I'd be happy to share career advice, Other

My favourite St Cuthbert's memory

It’s only with hindsight that I realise how fortunate I was to attend St Cuthbert’s. The access to state-of-the-art facilities, the opportunity to learn a variety of musical instruments, take part in numerous sporting events, and trips. Not to mention the competitive spirit at House events. I’ll always be an Iona girl! We were taught that we were capable of achieving anything we put our minds to, to be independent thinkers and strive for the best. One of my most memorable experiences was the outpouring of love from the entire St Cuthbert’s community at Fran Compton’s funeral.

My alumna wisdom

Seize every opportunity you can at school and work hard. Be determined, persevere, even in the face of adversity. Be kind to yourself, make sure you find time to balance work, exercise and mindfulness. It’s okay to ask for help. Show gratitude and be kind to others. It’s never too early to build your network, learn from others and find a mentor in your chosen field. Keep the faith, that has been my saving grace time and again.

Additional info

I’m happy to offer career advice, help set up quarterly events in London, meet visiting Old Girls for a coffee in London, or help them when they first arrive.