School of Food Science and Nutrition

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Charlotte de Drouas

BSc Nutrition (Industrial)

Charlotte has received the Research and Leadership Scholarship which she explains below. She is also an international student and talks about life as an international student here.

Why did you choose this course?
I chose this course as I have a keen interest in Nutrition and definitely want to be apart of this industry in the future.

What do you like most about your course?
I enjoy how we get to perform lab work on the material we learn, complementing the learning process. I also like how the material learnt can be applied to my daily life.

What skills have you gained from your course so far?

The balancing of modules, lab work and self-study has definitely honed my organisational skills. The writing up of lab reports have trained my analytic skills and I have also gained more communicative and team working skills through working in groups during lab experiments as well as several group projects throughout the year.

Why did you choose the University of Leeds?
I chose the University of Leeds not only for its reputation and rankings for this subject, but also for the all-round atmosphere it has, giving students a wide array of activities to take part in as well as their studies. The Students’ Union’s success and accolades was also a huge plus.

What is it that makes you passionate about the subject you study?
My passion definitely stems from the growing trends and interests on how people’s diets play a huge role in their health and well-being. I myself am cautious of my own diet, and with all the conflicting information presented to us through the media and various ‘studies’, I wanted once and for all to be able to learn about this subject matter and be equipped with the right knowledge to make an impact on others and educate them on attaining the right balance in their diets.  

Have you had the chance to gain any work experience so far?
I haven’t had the opportunity to have experience working in industry yet, although I am in the process of applying for a year in industry for my third year. Other than that I have been awarded a scholarship to carry out research in the summer and that was really interesting for me as I got to see another side of the world of science.

How did you get your Scholarship?
I found out about the undergraduate research and leadership scholarship through one of my lecturers who introduced it to me. It encompasses the title of being a student ambassador for two years and also carrying out scientific research of my own choosing during two summers of my undergraduate degree.

I understand you were involved in some filming for the BBC, could you tell me about that?
I was involved in some filming for the BBC as they came to our school to film an episode for a show called Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. I was invited as one of the students to be on the show as I am one of the schools’ student ambassadors. It was a really exciting experience; we recreated the first wheat flake according to the first patent of Dr John Harvey Kellogg. It was a nervous experience being in front of the camera, but in retrospect it was really fun working with other more experienced students, and I learnt more about Wheat and the processing of it.

How would you describe student life at Leeds?
Being a student at Leeds, one is presented with a wide variety of things to get involved in, be it sports, volunteering, campaigning or the arts. There is an enjoyable balance between work and social life and it supports a very vibrant student life here. The city itself leaves you plenty of things to do, and the fact that there are many higher education institutions in the area makes it very student-friendly. As with anywhere, your experience as a student is what you make out of it; and in Leeds, the opportunities are all there for you with open doors.

Has the course lived up to you expectations?
The course has far exceeded my expectations. When I first came here I expected to be studying purely clinical and human nutrition but it’s actually more of a well rounded course where we learnt, not only about nutrition, but also about the composition and the science of food. This gives us a wider scope of knowledge to then carry on to our further careers.

What do you plan to do at the end of your course?

I plan either to gain work experience as a Nutritionist, or to continue my education and attain the qualification of a Registered Dietitian (RD).

What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?

It is definitely an enjoyable course, and there is also an amazing rapport between staff and students which I really appreciate. Studying Nutrition at the University of Leeds presents you not only with the chance to gain a quality education, but being a research-intensive University; you also have the chance to take part in their research activities, enhancing your experience here.