Marta Calore

Before coming the University of Leeds, I went to a scientific Lyceum (high school) in my hometown in Italy. I first heard of the University of Leeds from my English teacher from the middle school, as it was an English International School, and many high school students would apply to UK universities. I chose to come to the University of Leeds because I was very attracted to the structure and content of my course and because I got a great feeling of positivity and multiculturalism from the campus tour I had before confirming it as my firm choice. My favourite thing about the university is its diverse and stimulating atmosphere, with students from all over the world, and I really love spending time and studying in the libraries too. So far, in fact, my experience in the university has been incredible, so much better than what I thought it would be-and my expectations were pretty high as well! It has given me so many amazing opportunities: in my first year I became course rep for my programme of study, and I took part in my accommodation’s halls executive and organised social events like seasonal balls and pizza nights. I stayed in Ellerslie Global Residences and I truly believe that it made my first life experience in a British university truly memorable. Being on campus helped me get used to a new life rhythm and eating in the Refectory became a great way to share daily actions and moments with my friends. In second year I lived with two girls I met in Ellerslie and we lived in a small rented flat near Hyde Park Pub. Now I live with just one of them, as the other is on her year abroad in Germany. I really enjoy the area because it is quiet, but it also offers many great places where to meet with friends, like pubs and multi-ethnic restaurants, and, most importantly, because it is so close to campus!

In my second year I became a Student Ambassador and was able to discover amazing societies like FilmSoc and STAR (Student Action for Refugees). I was also able to participate in Spanish language courses ran by native speakers from the Language Zone, which really enhanced my speaking abilities and my vocabulary, while at the same I was able to broaden my knowledge on the culture.

In third year, I have continued being course representative and have furthered my involvement with STAR by becoming part of the campaigns committee. Although I am busy with my dissertation and thinking about further study, I make sure I have time to get involved in Union activities and enjoy going to the Kirkgate Market to try different types of food and shop sustainably.

The best thing about my course is that I can model it however I prefer: because it is joint honours, I was given enough freedom to select whether I’d like to focus more on Economics or Politics. In fact, my politics dissertation is shorter than the single honours one so I can take more modules in the economics department. In addition to this, the University of Leeds School of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) offers a great variety of courses and discovery modules, so I was able to fill my extra credits with very interesting and contemporary-themed courses. Furthermore, it is thanks to the career centre within POLIS and the university that I was able to apply for and obtain a summer internship on research in the social sciences at the Business School’s Q-Step centre. This experience has certainly allowed me to understand what I would like to do in the future and has given me a taste of how lively and exciting Leeds is during the summer, too.

I am very focussed on my studies, but this programme of study also allows me to follow and keep up with some of my hobbies: I go swimming at the Edge a couple of times a week and I also try to take trips around Yorkshire to get into contact with the local culture and history- one of the first trips I went on was in Whitby and it is one of my favourite places ever. I also enjoy exploring Leeds: it is a very vibrant city and I love how it offers such a great variety of events and activities. My favourite places in Leeds are the Leeds Docks, because it is very peaceful there and I really enjoy taking a short taxi boat trip along the river during sunny days to get to the Royal Armouries, and I really enjoy going to jazz bars like Smokestack and Hyde Park Book Club.

Please do contact me if you have any questions!