- Course: BA History and History and Philosophy of Science
- Year of graduation: 2022
- Nationality: British
Please tell us a bit about yourself and your background?
I come from a small town in Norfolk, where Norwich is pretty much London. As much as I love the countryside I knew I wanted to live in a student city, and so I chose Leeds to do my BA History and History and Philosophy of science. At present, I am currently in my final year, looking to stay in Leeds for longer.
What made you want to apply to your BA course and to Leeds?
As someone who loves history, philosophy, and science, this course was obvious to me. It offered greater flexibility than BA History and allowed me to take a range of modules that explored both science and society. I have enjoyed this course, and I am currently writing my dissertation on British Colonial Kenya.
Leeds is a fantastic city with so many great opportunities. When I visited for the first time, it instantly clicked with me: big, but not overwhelming at all. Leeds is incredibly friendly and alive. The University also stood out to me, not just in its ranking but also in its great campus, facilities, and societies.
What is it that makes you passionate about your area of study?
History has allowed me to genuinely dive into the past and learn so much about culture, politics, and life - expanding my worldview. It's fascinating to trace back contemporary issues to their historical roots and get to know a period so well that you can confidently engage and contribute to wider debates.
What aspects of the course did you enjoy the most?
World history, particularly 20th Century colonial history, has been fascinating to explore across several modules. Their recency, and striking relevance to today, stand out with many narratives, concepts, and legacies still dominating public discourse today. Studying Middle Eastern, African, and Caribbean history really demonstrates the breadth of British rule and responsibility.
What would you say about the learning facilities in your School and at the University in general?
There are many great libraries to explore with a useful array of books for the course. Right now, I have practically been living in the library for my dissertation and have found the silent study area a welcome contrast to my student house.
Did you work closely with a particular tutor or member of the University's academic staff? Tell us about that experience.
Dr Shane Doyle has been my seminar tutor for my final year special subject, Uganda's Kingdoms. As an expert in African history, he has been fantastic in teaching many complex topics and supporting my development in my final year. He is also my dissertation supervisor for Colonial Kenya and is extremely helpful and receptive.
What other activities are available for students to take part in outside of their studies, and which ones have you tried out yourself?
The societies were one of the biggest appeals of the University of Leeds to me. Being passionate about film, I joined the Leeds Filmmaking society in my first year and collaborated in groups to produce short films, making some great friends along the way. In my second year, I became President and I refreshed the society with new designs and set up workshops to help people learn how to make films. In my final year, I have taken a step back from leadership, joining the Leeds Boxing Society to keep fit and try something new.
What do you plan to do now you've finished your course, and how do you think the skills and knowledge you've developed at Leeds will help with these plans?
Stereotypically as a final year student, I'm at a crossroads. Right now, I am deciding between taking up training to become a Solicitor or pursuing the Filmmaking route further.
What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?
Go for it. It's pretty specific, but if the sound of it resonates with you, you'll love it! I've found it so enriching and have made some good friends from the course. By the time you get to the third year, you'll stop reciting the full course name to everyone you meet. Instead, you'll be resigned to simply telling people that you study 'history' because it's easier to say. But you'll know it's so much more than that.