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Annika Nair

From: India
Studying: BSc Food Science
I speak
English, Hindi and Malayalam
BSc Food Science

Hello! My name is Annika and I am a second-year student studying Food Science and Nutrition BSc.

I am originally from India, but have lived in the UAE, Singapore and Bahrain. I completed my A-levels at the British School of Bahrain. While applying to different universities and hearing about what each one had to offer, the University of Leeds really caught my eye. I also had the chance to speak to a few placement students that have loved their time in Leeds and that only further strengthened my decision. Ultimately, I chose to come here given that Leeds ranked #1 for my specific course and had an overall excellent reputation with great research opportunities. Another aspect that really stood out to me was the striking balance between academic and social life, and how there are so many things to get involved in outside of your studies. Leeds is a very vibrant city with lots to explore, and I knew this was ideal for me.

Admittedly, when I first moved to the UK, it was a very difficult time for me, with the homesickness and being away from my family and friends being an entirely new experience for me. However, over the last couple of months, I can say that I feel like I have truly begun to find my place in this university and take full advantage of all the opportunities that the university offers. There are also so many resources and people to talk to, and that has really enhanced my experience and help me settle in better as well.

I have so many things about Leeds that I absolutely cherish, but my most favourite would have to be the Leeds University Union, or popularly known as the LUU. I love how inclusive of everyone this community is, and how all the events they put out are so diverse. There is always something for everyone, whether that be through wellbeing events, a range of different societies or cultural events. I myself got to continue nurturing my passion for writing through the HerCampus magazine. Not only this, but I have also been able to complete an internship where I was the Strategic Events Intern for the School of Earth and Environment. This internship has taught me so many valuable skills and qualities that I’m sure will help me in my future endeavours, but it has also helped me make some valuable connections and meet some amazing people. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity and how much I have developed since.

As for my course, I would say the best thing about it, apart from the really interesting material, are the hands-on opportunities we are given. Our course has several labs, volunteering opportunities, workshops and group work, and I think all this is so important in understanding the practicality of the course and applying it to real life.

Apart from academics, I love to play sports and have been playing cricket, basketball and athletics for years. Whether it’s competitively or just for fun, I enjoy playing all kinds of sports and am open to trying new things. Music and dance is also a big part of my life. I sing, play the piano and do hip-hop, competitively as well as a hobby. I also really enjoy reading, volunteering at animal shelters and traveling. Leeds has so much to offer and being a student city, I find everything so accessible. Whether it be café-hopping, trying new restaurants, shopping or being one with nature - everything is so close by or accessible through public transport! Also, it being a student-friendly city, there are student discounts and offers everywhere, so I would say Leeds is a place where you can have fun and explore without running over your budget.

Personally, since I grew up in major metropolitan cities like Dubai and Singapore, the Leeds City Centre would be my favourite place to go, as I love to be surrounded by people and of course retail therapy! Again, there is so much at the City Centre, it’s the perfect place to hangout with your friends or just spend some much-needed time for yourself.

For my second year, I will be moving into a flat but for my first year, I lived in a student accommodation known as Ellerslie Global Residences, with the name itself signifying that it had a bigger international population than most. It is on campus and just a short walk away from the Union, which I absolutely loved because I was able to take part in whatever was going on campus that day as I would always pass through the union. It is also a comparatively smaller residence than others, and because of this, I feel like I have gotten to know people much more personally and build stronger relationships. Well, that’s it about me, now I would like to know more about you! I am always open to speaking with new people, and if there’s anything you would like to discuss, vent about or have questions, please contact me on UniBuddy or send me an email at 🙂 

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