Posted on Thursday, 30 August 2018 at 11am
by Lifelong Learning Centre Staff.
The following is a guest post by Roland Maposa, a mature student who graduated from our BA Professional Studies programme in July 2018.
When I started here at the University of Leeds my single motivation was to get the best possible classification for my chosen degree. However, the words of my school rep at the time really drove home the importance of making the most of my student experience. His words truly resonate now, as I come to the end of my time with the LLC. While my marks have remained my priority, throughout my time here I’ve come to appreciate the value of a full student experience.
A lot of what I have done outside of my academic work has been only possible through the understanding and support of my family! Another important factor, however, has been the support of LLC Opportunities Fund. This exists to enable students to take part in extracurricular activities and personal development opportunities that inform their student experience (including their academic studies).
The fund supported me after I successfully applied to the inaugural Leeds to New York Leadership Programme here at Leeds. As a direct result of taking part in this programme I co-founded InLeeds, a student-led initiative that seeks to retain and attract talent to the Leeds City Region. I also currently serve as a student trustee for Leeds University Union.
Whilst in New York the importance, as a future leader, of understanding China was impressed on my mind. I subsequently started mandarin lessons at the University through the Business Confucius Institute. The fund supported me twice more – after I applied through the Study Abroad office for a place on the ‘Doing Business’ in China international summer school programme at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China, and most recently when I took part in this year’s China Camp 2018 in Beijing and Xi’an, hosted by the University of International Business and Economics.
The support I have received from the wonderful people at the LLC, and through the Opportunities Fund, is humbling. I have imparted insights gleaned from these experiences and activities to my fellow students and with the wider community in my voluntary role as a Learning Champion.
I would urge any and all students to make the most of your ‘full’ student experience through accessing opportunities that develop you – don’t underestimate what a huge difference this can make!