Studying: BA Sociology and International Relations
- I speak: Polish, English, Spanish, Bosnian, Italian
I’m Julia and I am currently studying Sociology and International Relations. What attracted me to Leeds University in the first place was the quality of the student experience, combined with high academic standard. I wanted to study at a university that would help me develop intellectually but I did not want to limit myself to my course. I was fascinated by the great number of societies and extracurricular opportunities available to students. The University seemed very welcoming, too.
So far my experience in Leeds have been amazing. I have changed as a person, learned a lot and met loads of wonderful people. The past two years have been very intense: busy, challenging and FUN. Overall, I think choosing to study at the University of Leeds was the best decision of my life.
My favourite thing about the university is Leeds University Union, which I consider my second home in Leeds. The amount of support they offer is incredible: they can help you with anything from housing, to job hunting, to tackling exam stress. The opportunity to get involved in student politics and get your voice heard makes you feel like you can have an actual impact on the environment you’re in. I have been actively involved in a lot of political, volunteering and performance societies and loved every bit of that experience. Moreover, the Union organize loads of great events open to everyone, from theatre shows to conferences and workshops. You can never get bored!
Even though I am still a student, I have a few part-time jobs at the University of Leeds. I conduct extra-curricular conversation and public speaking classes in the Language Centre, promote the University to prospective students as a Student Ambassador and coordinate the Global Café – a weekly social event for international students. The opportunity to fit the job around your course and earn extra money while studying is something I am really grateful for.
The best thing about my course are my professors. It is great to learn first-hand from people who are leading academics in their field, teach you how to think critically and infect you with their passion for the subject.
In my spare time, I try to make the most out of my time in Leeds. As a member of the Spoken Word Society, I go to a lot of open mics and perform at poetry events. I volunteer as a mentor for teenagers coming from disadvantaged backgrounds and serve food in a local community café. I am also a pretty sporty person so whenever I spare a few hours I enjoy swimming at the Edge gym, playing basketball in the Woodhouse Moor Park, jogging or taking long walks by the Leeds canal.
Even though the campus may seem like a whole world to many, it is worth stepping out of the student bubble sometimes - Leeds is a fantastic city to live in! I love the Yorkshire community spirit - there is a lot of people involved in activism and volunteering opportunities. Moreover, Leeds has a great arts, music and poetry scene with loads of underground events going on every week.
My favourite place in Leeds is the Harehills/Chapeltown area. It is the most culturally diverse area of the city, with plenty of community centres, places of worship and restaurants offering cuisines from all around the world. It is also where the Caribbean Carnival takes place every summer.
I am renting a private house located 20mins walk from the university. Living in a house with my closest friends makes me feel at home and comfortable.