DMU graduates do remarkable things
From photographing celebrities to safely delivering babies, DMU graduates are making their mark on the world. Here is just a small sample of the success stories from across our four faculties.
DMU graduate Andy Gotts MBE has photographed some of the world’s most famous entertainment stars. He has spent the last two years capturing portraits of more than 100 international actors and actresses who have won or been nominated for a BAFTA award for the ‘Behind the Mask’ exhibition.
His famous subjects include Stephen Fry, Robert De Niro, Lauren Bacall, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessie J, Chris Martin from Coldplay, Sting and Phil Collins.“Even though I have been given the title 'celebrity photographer' I have always seen myself as a photographer of actors,” said Andy. “I have always been a movie buff and getting the opportunity to meet my matinée idols is beyond a dream come true. I specialise in character studies of the face and try to show a new and different side of world-famous faces in my ‘warts and all’ style.”
View some of Andy’s amazing images here.
Fashion Retail Buying graduate Lizze Leary (below) set up online shoe retailer Kindred Sole with help from DMU’s entrepreneur scheme, Campus Enterprise Opportunities, and our business mentoring programme. “I’ve had very strong support from the university,” said Lizze. “In the past 12 months, we’ve consistently grown the business and year on year we are doubling in terms of revenue.”
Recently named Leicestershire’s Young Business Executive of the Year, Lizze maintains strong links with DMU, helping to judge competitions for entrepreneurs and acting as a mentor.
Beyoncé wore a DMU graduate's design to open the Grammys, taking to the stage in a bodysuit designed by Contour Fashion graduate Nichole de Carle, who has many celebrity followers, including Paloma Faith, Nichole Scherzinger and Jessie J. Meanwhile, Contour Fashion graduate Hannah Thomas landed her dream job at Abercrombie & Fitch after impressing the company with new designs for their lingerie label, Gilly Hicks.
Business Studies graduate Jasmin Mann secured a job with Royal Mail after completing two on-campus work placements organised by DMU. “The employment market is getting tougher and many students are graduating with little or no work experience. My work placements gave me invaluable experience that I could talk about at interview. It also built my confidence,” she said.
Jasmin gained her invaluable work experience during her studies through DMU’s Frontrunners internship scheme, firstly working for DMU’s Faculty of Technology and later with Leicester Police.
Spending most of her time at the centre of the world’s financial hubs in London and New York, Bijna Dasani has worked hard since leaving DMU, and is now a vice-president at leading global investment bank, Deutsche Bank.
Although Bijna has explored many places during her globe-trotting career, she keeps a special place in her heart for Leicester. “Studying at DMU remains very important to me – it represents an excellent standard of teaching and a fantastic calibre of peers. There is also an exceptional network of alumni which it is a pleasure to be affiliated with,” said Bijna.
Two graduates of DMU’s Leicester Institute of Legal Practice are carving out a career with one of the region’s biggest law firms, Nelsons. Martha Splevings, who works in the employment department, and Emma Sharp, who works in family law, praised the “open door” policy of DMU law lecturers and the first-class facilities at the Hugh Aston which includes a law library and mock courtroom.
DMU law graduate Ben Mansford became the youngest boss in Championship football after taking over the helm at Barnsley FC aged just 33. After graduating from DMU in 2002, Ben turned his passion for football into a stellar career. “The course at DMU was one of few offering a specialist course for sports law: that is why I chose DMU after my law degree. Ultimately, the course is vocational and has been so relevant for my choice of practice,” he said.
Working on major BBC TV series, The Village, has been “hard work but worth it,” says DMU Media Production graduate, Cara Haywood. “ Working on the second series of The Village has been so interesting and I have learned so much. I already had the technical knowledge gained from the TV production module at DMU but working on set is pretty full-on,” said Cara, who got the job working for Company Pictures through Creative Skillset’s TV Trainee Finder programme.
Animation Design graduate George Crosbie secured a job at King Rollo Films in Devon to work on a new children’s animated TV series. He attributes his success in the competitive jobs market to experience gained through a DMU Graduate Champion internship at 360 Red Productions.
“When I mentioned I had experience working for 360 Red, it definitely gave me an edge. The work experience gave me the chance to stretch my legs and push my skills in as many directions as possible,” he said.
Media Production graduate Leanne Allen landed her dream job at BBC Radio 1, taking up a role in the cutting-edge Visualisation department to help bring new audiences to the station. "My study with DMU gave me a good grounding in a wide range of media production areas, allowing me to apply this within my interview and in industry. It has always been really supportive – I don't think I would have had the confidence to go for this job if I hadn't been to DMU,” said Leanne.
DMU’s acclaimed Game Art course gave Will Schoolcraft the skills and knowledge he needed to land a top job at Climax Studios, known for the Silent Hill and Castlevania: Lord of Shadows games. “In all honesty, when it came to choosing where to study it was a no-brainer because Game Art at DMU was the best there was. The quality of the work was just second to none and you got a real sense of camaraderie.”
Will is responsible for all the effects that games players love – explosions, magic effects and event weather. “I couldn't be more happy or excited to be doing something I love for a living,” he said.
Former DMU Midwifery student Laura Coulson won the ‘Caring at its Best’ accolade, which rewards NHS employees who go the extra mile to help patients. She was nominated by Jodie Holyoak, who Laura supported during a difficult delivery. “Laura was extremely caring [and] showed so much empathy that she almost felt my pain with me,” said Jodie. Laura stayed by her side even after the end of her 12-hour night shift. Jodie described Laura as “a very thoughtful and considerate person that deserves recognition.