Welcome to Leeds

Members of the Leeds alumni community welcome you as you begin your Leeds journey

Leeds for life

The Leeds community – your fellow students, our wonderful staff, and of course, our global alumni – are excited to welcome you to Leeds. You join a community that will support you for the rest of your life.

Don’t just take our word for it. Read on to discover welcome messages and tips from our alumni, those who walked this path before you, as you begin your Leeds journey.


Abhishek Kumar Singh (MBA 2011)

You are going to be at the best place on earth, so enjoy it to the fullest, have fun and take good care of yourself.

When in doubt, do not hesitate, ask. Participate in the Student Union. Thanks to the friends I made here, I have an extended family in Leeds.

Hannah Irwin (International Development and Spanish 2017)

Congratulations! You've arrived at the University of Leeds – an amazing place to study and to find yourself!

This may be a scary and uncertain time, but this will be another unique part of the adventure of your life. Grab hold of every opportunity; get to know people who are like you and people who are different, study, dream, love, find faith, find hope, find joy! You'll never regret giving each day your all.

I was very involved in the Christian Union the whole time I was a student, and they were some of the best times I had! I met so many people from different background and nations, and we were all united in one purpose. I remember being so inspired by the older students I got to know, by their love for people and the passion for the world. It shaped who I am now – and fed into the work I do now! So it was a wonderful time.

In my degree we spent a lot of time thinking about how things could be done well, and particularly about how development projects and schemes could do the most good and least harm. The mindset and mentality brought about by thinking in these ways has shaped me immensely. In my life and in my work, I am constantly thinking about peoples' needs. The analytical framework that the academic side of my life in Leeds built into me helps me think through the challenges of my job well, and to think through how best to meet these needs, while preventing harm being done. It shapes my dreams for the future as well, as I hope to integrate business and social development and to bring positive change in local communities. I have Leeds to thank for that.


Prashanth Udayakumar (Transport Planning 2017)

The city and the university have their own charm.

There's definitely very interesting and engaging coursework to do, but please take time out to enjoy the natural beauty of the villages and the cities across the UK.

Gourab Mohanty (Aerospace Engineering 2017)

Welcome aboard. I hope you guys have enjoyed your holidays before your course starting here at this magnificent University of Leeds.

Of course, you need to stay safe in this unfortunate pandemic but please don't forget to enjoy your rollercoaster ride in your journey in this beautiful city which I call my ‘home away from home.’ Now you’re here, this place has got a lot to offer you – be it the busy day life or the wild nightlife. The professors at Leeds are so helpful that you could actually share anything with them and they would help. The Refectory is on a mission to provide you guys with the best delicious international cuisines so you don’t have to worry about finding the best restaurant in town. The Student Union (LUU) has got you covered for all kinds of festive events so you can get groovy on Saturday nights.

Academically, the university has great resources to help you excel. The libraries are fantastic – make the most of the personal study rooms you can book to spend time learning in private. Explore the campus, I am pretty sure this will take time as the campus is huge, but still worth it.

I was a member of the Leeds Indian Students Association where we had lot of fun in the LUU and outside. Leeds has made me into a person who can face all kinds of challenges in life be it professional or personal. The culture and people were of immense help to widen my thoughts and perspective of viewing the world. I wish you all the very best for your upcoming courses and projects. May the force be with you.


Patsy (English Language and Medieval Literature 1971)

You may think my experience was a long time ago, but arriving in a new city to start a completely new life remains an exciting and scary prospect.

I am still close friends with those I studied with and still live in Leeds (I was born and grew up in Sussex). My experience at Leeds set the path for everything that followed in my life and I wouldn’t have missed it for anything.My advice is to take a deep breath and dive in! Keep an open mind, try new things, change and grow. Take things step by step, don’t procrastinate and ask for help.


Martin Baines (English 1977)

Leeds has changed, but I hope you enjoy your time there as much as I did. Good luck and fare thee well.

Mix and don’t let the social side be ignored because of work pressure. A good balance is essential for success, enjoyment and wellbeing. Be yourself and live and learn.

I have travelled all over the world because of the skills I acquired at Leeds, working in various industries from oil and gas to insurance. Leeds life taught me how to trust my judgement, market myself and enjoy myself.


Patricia White (History 1981)

Welcome to Leeds! I would like to wish you many happy times at Leeds. Don't worry if it takes time to settle in and to make new friendships: it will happen.

Don't doubt yourself. There will be so much on offer especially socially and it can take time to find what works for you. Don't worry it will work out. Seek help and advice if you need to.


Angela Steatham (French and Management Studies 1986)

Congratulations on having excellent judgement in choosing Leeds and, of course, gaining the grades required to enjoy life at this amazing institution!

Even though it's now over three decades since I graduated, I can recall my entire experience and do so with much affection and pride. The friendships I made, the world-class bands I watched in the Refectory and the memorable lectures all inform who I am today. So savour every moment, even the tough times will give you self-awareness and develop resilience. You really are going to have an extraordinary experience which will be defining for the rest of your life.

Don't play it safe. Don't hide. Do take risks. Do experiment. Go to every event you're invited to. Don't leave submissions to the last minute! Put your energy into every relationship - with course members, flat mates, lecturers and faculty team and, importantly the staff at your favourite curry house!

Leeds Student newspaper unleashed my creativity. Becoming President of the Management Society exposed me to fantastic leadership development. Modern dance kept me fit. Debating and Labour Group gave me a lifelong commitment to social justice and challenging authority. The music scene in Leeds in the early 80's has given me bragging rights which I still use today - who else can say they have a set of drumsticks from Ian Drury or had a pint with Marc Almond? (Google them!)


Mohamed Yousuf (MSc International Marketing Management 2014)

Since COVID-19 has created a new normal, your experience may not be like what any of us had, only unique and better.

These are going to be some of the best days in your life, make the most of it, but also don't lose focus on what you're here for. Go ahead and have the greatest time of your lives.

he best part about university is gaining global exposure, meeting people from around the world. Get involved with the Student Union. There are some great events organised by LUU (including networking events), where you can learn a lot more life-changing skills than just academics. Dedicate a day to explore the resources available to you at Leeds. Find a place where you are comfortable to work from. There's a club or society for everything you love and have a passion for. It's a great chance to meet like-minded people to do things together. From caving to diving, there's something for all. In The Turkish Society, I learnt a lot about Turkish culture. The Islamic Society kept me connected with my religious beliefs. The Indian Society ensured I didn't miss home.

In Leeds, I networked with a lot of people. In fact, my friends were very diverse with - Europeans, Indians, Asians, Africans and South Americans. Now, I have friends all over the world and when I travel, I can see them. In a particular trip to Brazil, I spent 23 days road tripping east to west, and I had a friend in every single town I crossed. A trip that would otherwise cost me three times more, was affordable to me, only because of all the lovely and generous friends that I made at Leeds who invited me to stay in their homes.


Phetsile Mamba (MSc Public Health International 2017)

I want to welcome everyone, Leeds is a great city full of activities. Enjoy your stay, focus on your studies.

More than everything interact with others and have fun, but never allow peer pressure to get hold of you. For those coming from countries outside England, make friends for social and emotional support to help with homesickness.