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Alya: A week in my student life


Hi everyone! My name is Alya and I’m one of the Link to Leeds ambassadors from Indonesia. A bit about my background - I’m a final year physics student (very busy) who loves jazz, meeting new people, vegan food and a bit of a sustainability geek! I currently live in one of the on-campus accommodations at Leeds. My vlog was a bit long, so I decided to cut it up into three parts -  academic life, part-time jobs and clubs & societies (social life). Hope you all enjoy it!

Part 1: Academic Life

On a typical week day, I would wake up at around 9:30 AM. I normally allocate my cleaning and laundry to Mondays as I only have one lecture that day in the evening. Usually, regardless if I have a class or not, I would drag myself to campus to get some work done - whether that’s catching up on lectures, doing assignments, tutorial prep, or even learning French (I’ve been teaching myself French for 3 months now!). I try to socialise as much as I can while I’m on campus (to make up for loss time due to the pandemic) so during study breaks, I’d meet up with a friend and have lunch with them.

Normally, I’d get home at about 5 PM and take a quick nap before I cook my dinner. Afterwards, if I still have the energy I would do a bit more university work, if not, I’d watch a bit of Netflix, read a book, or FaceTime friends/family! I try to make sure I have at least a couple of hours each day to chill and recharge. Rest is important!

One of my favourite things to do with my friends is to go grocery shopping! I absolutely love walking through the non-dairy milk aisle and spend too much time deciding which milk to get. I also really enjoy studying together with my friends even if we’re not doing the same course. We would normally take each other’s phones so we don’t get easily distracted! Most things are just more enjoyable when you have company.

Because I know I have a lot to do each day, I always make sure that at the start of each day, I would list down all the things I need to get done on that day to make sure I remember. I try to make sure my to-do lists are as realistic as possible, it helps because I list down too many things, it could potentially get overwhelming and I tend to not get them done.

Part 2: Part-time Jobs

As you all are aware of by now, I work part-time as Link to Leeds Ambassador! I do a lot of things as a part of the scheme - campus tours, photoshoots, social media takeovers, online socials, make vlogs, and sometimes be a temporary filmographer for my manager!

On top of my Link to Leeds work, I also volunteer as a student mentor at Zero Gravity to help underprivileged students in the UK get accepted into top UK universities - I assist them in practicing for university entry exams, interview prep, share my study tips, et cetera. I’m also a part-time waitress at a fine-dining Thai restaurant near where I live. I love working there as I get to have free food before and after my shifts!

Part 3: Social Life

Outside of my studies, I am the STEM director of the Women in Leadership Society (or WILS for short - an award-winning society at Leeds!), a member of the Swing Dance Society, Vegan & Vegetarian Society and the Indonesian Society. As shown in the vlog, I went to a WILS event that week where we organised a LinkedIn photoshoot as well as a positivity workshop.

For swing dancing, we do our classes weekly every Thursday - the thing I look forward to the most every week! We’d go to a local pub after each class and have a little social - I’ve really  become such good friends with a lot of the members!

The Edge (the university’s sports centre) runs plenty of classes that you can join each week - from Pilates, yoga, HIIT, Zumba, you know name it! That week I sign up to a particularly interesting one with Zainab called Disco Yoga. I found the concept quite strange and unique at first but I found the session so much fun! On Tuesday nights at Terrace in the Leeds University Union (LUU), we have Open Mic Night. I regularly perform there when I can, and it’s always a good experience watching live music (for free!) with friends and performing in front of a live audience. It was extremely nerve-racking at first, but it was genuinely one of the best experiences of my life!