Recent Graduate Profiles

Faride Tanus Leal

MSc. Entrepreneurship & Innovation, 2014 

Co-Founder and Commercial Director at LetraCapital.MX

"Life after graduation isn’t easy, adapting to it can be very stressful. However as an entrepreneur it's the most scary and amazing experience I have ever had, it’s like a rollercoaster ride, full of contrasts, with ups and downs. However I choose this life and I would never change my decision. Perhaps is the most challenging job on the world and you have to realize nothing is for granted especially time and money, but at the same time is the most rewarding job. Launching your own start-up is harder than you expected, it requires going the extra mile but is truly worth it. At the start you will have to learn how to become a marketer, an accountant and all sorts of positions in a short amount of time. That’s why the most valuable lesson is: Never stop learning and be passionate about it, there is always so much to learn. You are half way, with practice, knowledge and skills acquired during and after Masters, it will help to boost ideas, create strategies and transform all types of risks into opportunities. But more importantly, learn the ability to stay calm when challenges arise and pay attention to what really matters.

A piece of advice, things might just work out all right, just go for it and do what’s on your heart and mind without overthinking.  By the time you have an idea that motivates you, no matter how little it's, take your willingness and everything you have learned to turn that idea into something bigger, into your dream job".


Jake Hearn

MA Wild Writing, Literature, Landscape and the Environment, 2015


"Upon completing my degree, I felt two emotions: sheer happiness and complete trepidation. One chapter of my life (a chapter which lasted 5 years) had come to fruition and another one was about to start. Finding your feet and forging a nook for yourself in the ‘real’ world is no easy feat, but a degree from the University of Essex is a pretty good place to begin.

I am eight months into life in the ‘real' world and it has been a rollercoaster of emotions and experiences. I began the first two months working two part-time jobs. In January this year, I started my new job at a Secondary School in Essex working in Learning Support; covering lessons; and teaching groups of GCSE English students. This new job has challenged me in ways I had never experienced and I am currently on track to train as an English teacher in the next eighteen months.

Admittedly, leaving Uni was incredibly tough and, at first, I felt isolated and alone. What got me through was the knowledge that I had a degree from one of the finest University’s in the country; I utilized the support on offer from the Employability and Career’s Office; and, above all, I stuck to my convictions – I told myself ‘yes, I can’: a positive frame of mind works wonders for morale and your own confidence.

Whatever you choose to do, and wherever that may be, cherish your undergraduate memories and work proud in the knowledge that you are a graduate of the University of Essex. Good luck!" 

Dr Olayinka A Oloko

Biological Sciences PhD, 2014 

Project Strategic Director at London Professional Training Centre



"Life after graduation can be exciting but also challenging as I found out. As a graduate of the class of 2015, I knew there lay challenges ahead but didn’t really know what to expect. I wanted to do everything at once; get a graduate job, travel, have fun, get my own place and so on. The list was endless. I had this idea that if I didn’t remain in my field of study, then all the thousands of pounds, effort and sleepless nights I invested into my degree would sum up to a waste.

I could not be more wrong. After several failed interviews, I got offered a poorly paid graduate job. It was tempting giving that I was finally offered a job in my field coupled with the fact that I had bills to pay including rent, phone, car insurance etc. I rejected the offer. Of course this was after deliberation over a few days.

At first I thought I might have made a mistake especially when I found myself applying for a support worker role a few weeks later. So I changed my strategy. I stopped comparing myself to other people and rediscovered myself. Then I realized that my time at the University of Essex made me an all round candidate and I can do whatever I want and succeed. I have the highest academic qualification (PhD), so why can’t I get a job? So it occurred to me that I needed continued professional development by way of professional qualifications. That’s what I did.

I now run a training company in London. So my advice to the class of 2016 is; never give up, be forward thinking, do what you enjoy because no matter what you think, you have got what it takes to achieve what you want."


Russell Savage

MSc Psychology, 2014 


"At the time of my graduation from Essex, I felt my lecturers, all my friends, family, and the perfect hand eye coordination given to me from the times I’ve jumped onto that lift in the library had prepared me for life after Uni, or as I like to call it AD (the time period After-Dissertation). The struggle was real, adjusting to life after my 4 year stretch (uni slang for going back for an MSc), I’d be lying if I wasn’t a little institutionalised. Apparently phones nowadays can be used as an alarm clock, and there is a time period between 6-10am where people strap on a tie and venture to a thing called a job. So I thought why not, I did all this studying, time to reap the rewards.

Fast forward six months, and well, I decided to take early retirement and thought this job lark isn’t working for me. I decided to cash in my car, my savings, and sell all my textbooks. Pockets heavy full of textbook cash, I did something crazy. I took an interview online, signed a contract, and told my parents the next day I’m moving to China alone, a place I had never been to before, or knew anyone.

I’ve been here 9 months, learnt the language, and certainly become a broader (the food is pretty amazing), patient, independent and a much more open minded person. My path is certainly the least travelled, but Essex inspired me to be someone different, to see the world, live the life I wanted to live, and let me study in a nurturing, and stimulating environment. Thanks to everyone at Essex, all the staff, and the unsung heroes who make studying there an adventure!"