Jodie Legrand

Jodie Legrand

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

I knew that studying a management degree would expose me to academic frameworks, literature, and theories that would reinforce my knowledge of business. I desired a degree which would help me understand the intricacies of business alongside increasing my employability – in particular with regards to the international organisations that I had always dreamed of working for. My management degree at Leeds University Business School provided me with everything I desired. Additionally, I took a Year in Industry at IBM in HR where I built upon my degree and developed the skills needed to obtain my Graduate Procurement position at Sky.

I was initially really impressed by the vast array of support available at Leeds University Business School. I knew from the offset that I wanted to pursue a placement year in my third year of study and this was an option which Leeds University Business School really supported me with. I chose my second year module options to help prepare for the Year in Industry and increase employability, for example 'Study to Work' and 'Developing Your Potential' (both second year modules). I also liked the idea of being able to shape my degree, for example in final year I chose modules based around my interests in Artificial Intelligence, The Internet of Things and Social Sharing Platforms. This specialist knowledge allows me to assess the impacts of these technologies on practice.

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

The best part of my time studying at Leeds University was definitely my final year of study. This was particularly down to how much I had grown up on placement year at IBM, the transferable skills I had acquired, and the renewed focus and determination that I returned to university with. Despite the increased workload and expectations of final year, the support provided to me by Leeds University Business School was excellent and the experience is one that I would do again in a heartbeat.

What were your career aspirations when you arrived? Do you think the experience and skills you gained here will help/helped you in your future career plans? In what way?

When I arrived in Leeds, I was definitely unsure of my potential, and my career was never something I had fully stopped to think about. This changed as soon as I arrived at Leeds, straight from the offset I was informed about different career options and opportunities available to me. I was introduced to the preparation needed to apply for a Year in Industry, the Leeds for Life network, how to layout a desirable CV and I was guided towards the autumn campus careers fair. All of this guidance began as soon as I started my time at Leeds University Business School and proceeded right up until graduation.

The support system that is embedded into the foundations of Leeds University Business School is definitely the biggest accolade of the business school. There have been numerous occasions where I have needed last minute rooms for Skype interviews or urgent help with regards to job applications and on every single occasion I have been accommodated and supported. I honestly believe that without the support and guidance offered to me at Leeds I may not have been successful in securing my placement and graduate positions and is consequently something that I am very thankful to the business school for.

What are your ambitions for the future?

In August I will be starting my Graduate Procurement position at Sky. The program is a 3 year scheme, whereby I partake in exams for Chartership (Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply) and undertake 4 different procurement rotations. My first rotation is scheduled to be in Marketing Procurement.

My ambitions for the future are to keep working hard and moving forwards. I don't have a set end goal of what I wish to obtain in my career, as I believe ambitions should be revised given priorities and opportunities available at the time. However, I am very excited to see what the next chapter has in store!

Do you think your experience and skills gained here will help you in your future career plans? In what way?

I think my skills and experiences at Leeds University Business School have helped me to strive for the best. My confidence has grown whilst being at Leeds from the opportunities that I have been provided, particularly from the chances that have been presented for public speaking and honing my cross-cultural communication.

International communication is built in to so many parts of life at Leeds University Business School. In second year, I took part in the China scholarship trip to Shanghai and Hangzhou, including meeting the incoming Chinese students to the Business School. These experiences inspired me to become an international student ambassador and study group leader back in Leeds. The experience was imperative for enhancing both my personal and professional development. It has also opened up my options for future international work in my career.

One of the biggest lessons I learned at Leeds, particularly through the presence of assessment centres and application processes, is the imperativeness of speaking in group situations 'at the right time' and not 'all the time'. This skill is an attribute that has greatly transformed the way that I work in group situations and has assisted in my progression both academically and in the workplace.

What was your impression/experience of the facilities, the staff, your peers, the student union, the City of Leeds and the region itself? What would you recommend to future students?

The staff have been amazing and have thoroughly moulded my experience at Leeds. They have continually offered impeccable support and guidance when I have needed it throughout my degree. I have particularly been supported by the employability staff and honestly believe that my experience on my placement year and my success in securing my perfect graduate job would not have been possible without their ongoing help and guidance.

I would without a doubt recommend Leeds University Business School to future students. It’s the perfect place to study for a vibrant and exciting city, but also with exceptional academic support.

What would you say is your defining memory of studying here? (eg friendships made, confidence in your abilities, or any single event that you will always remember?) And would you recommend the Business School to others

I would have to say I have two defining memories of my time at Leeds. My first would have to be gaining a scholarship place on Leeds University Business School's trip to China, where I spent two weeks in Shanghai and Hangzhou, learning about the Chinese culture, meeting with incoming Leeds University Business School international students, and networking in China. This experience was a once in a lifetime opportunity and is a trip which I will never forget.

The second defining memory has to be the friendships I have made through the business school. I have met so many supportive, driven and intelligent students who have really moulded the way I view the world through both a personal and professional viewpoint. Without the amazing friendships I have made throughout the business school my experience at Leeds would not have been the same.