Fiona Jones

Fiona Jones

How did you hear about Leeds University Business School and why did you choose to study here?

I’m from quite a rural area, and had never lived in a city before, so I wanted to try living in a big, busy city, probably in the North of England. When deciding on a location, I was really focused on the social aspects of university life, mainly taking my information from past and current students - and Leeds was very highly recommended. However, when I was researching the Business School itself I was much more concerned with its academic offerings.

Leeds University Business School is very high in the university league tables, and is triple accredited, which became a must for me. In the end, what really swung the decision for me was the amazing variation in choice of modules throughout your degree, as it now feels that my Economics degree is completely tailored to what I want to do.

Tell us about your degree - why did you choose it? What elements of the degree inspired you to study it?

Whilst studying Economics at A-Level, I discovered it was very much a passion of mine. The way that Economics combines so many disciplines, from historical to statistical analysis and traditional theory to modern application is what really makes it one of the most employable subjects to study.

I was worried before I came to Leeds about how maths heavy the course would be as I didn’t study maths at A-Level. However, the support provided in my first year of study meant that I was able to catch up with my peers and actually began to enjoy my maths modules.

What is the best part of your studies? What are you enjoying the most?         

One of my favourite pieces of work was an assignment on why financial crises happen in our current financial system. Using Economic analysis to study this was fascinating as it added a whole new level to a topic that I thought I already knew a fair amount about, and has inspired me to spend more time looking further into financial systems.

Whenever I speak about green finance and ethical investing I get so passionate, and it’s through my studies that I found these specialties that I am now so invested in, even searching for a career in them.

What are your career aspirations? Do you think the experience and skills you will gain from your degree course will help you in your future career plans? In what way?

As an Economics Student at Leeds University Business School, I feel that my employment opportunities after university are endless. We are constantly targeted by potential employers and the careers events put on by the Business School are almost daily. There is loads of support available, whatever you want to do next!

Personally I am interested in working either in Green Finance or doing something that involves macroeconomic analysis, for instance the Government Economic Service. I know that I would like to do something that involves travel, and am also really passionate about advocating for sustainable growth plans, so this is what I’m really targeting in the long run.

Do you have any noteworthy achievements from your studies at the Business School that you can tell us about - eg prizes, highest scores etc?

I’m really proud of all my academic achievements, especially the skills I’ve developed in juggling so many modules at once whilst maintaining a high grade average. I was particularly proud of my achievements during one of my second year exams, in which I scored in the top 5 students for the module.

Have you taken up any of the extra opportunities available to you and what was your experience of these? Any highlights?

I did a study year abroad at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. It was genuinely the best experience I’ve ever had, and I would definitely recommend it for anyone considering it.

It is one of the best opportunities you could have to give living abroad a go, as you still receive a student loan for the year, making the financial strain of moving to another country a bit easier. You also receive support from both Leeds and your host university, and being a student means there are so many chances to meet new people.

I also had the chance to travel during my year, both around Australia and South East Asia. Over the course of the year, I met so many new people and discovered more passions that I have now brought back to Leeds. I feel that the year has shaped my priorities for what I want to do after I graduate.

I also completed a summer internship once I returned from Brisbane, with KPMG in London. Again, this experience was invaluable as it allowed me to test run a possible graduate job that I had been considering. It also gave me the chance to try out living in London. I really enjoyed the experience and learned so much about the industry, and at the end of the internship I was offered a graduate job with the company for 2020, an amazing opportunity for me to consider.


What is your impression/experience of the facilities, the staff, your peers, the student union, the City of Leeds and the Yorkshire region?

The city of Leeds has been the perfect place for me to study. I really enjoy the fact that Leeds is a campus university, as when I’m on campus for the day I see so many people around, and all the resources that I need are readily available.

The Economics Division at Leeds is amazing, as there are so many academics from so many schools of economic thought. This means that whatever you want to pursue within your studies, there will always be a member of faculty you can speak to. This is especially helpful for choosing a dissertation topic.

Are there any other experiences outside of your studies that you have particularly enjoyed? What would you recommend to future students?

The nightlife in Leeds is great and a massive part of my university experience. The prices are also amazing compared to other cities, meaning you can afford to go out and do things more often.

I also really like that you can get a bus to nearby villages such as Ilkley, and from there you can explore the surrounding countryside, the Yorkshire Dales. Doing this has been a great way of getting out of the city with friends for a day when I’m missing the countryside.

Is there anything else you'd like to say?

Choosing where to study is such a big decision, so gather all the information you can before you make a choice. On my part, choosing to study at Leeds has been the best decision I have ever made, and I wouldn’t change my university for the world. The experiences that I have had and the people I’ve met along the way have impacted my life in the most positive way, and my love for Leeds just keeps growing.