Simona Bottinelli

Simona Bottinelli

What course are you studying?

I am studying MSc Food Quality and Innovation at the University of Leeds.

Why did you decide to study a masters at the University of Leeds?

I decided to come to Leeds, after having researched about Universities offering a Master’s course in Food Science around the UK. I wanted to study abroad, to develop my skills and have more experiences. I studied my undergraduate course in Milan Italy) and I wanted to make a step further in my academic career. Therefore, I came to the UK and I started considering the University of Leeds, for its reputation and for the type of modules that were offered.

What does Leeds as a city have to offer students?

I really liked the city when I came for a day trip, I felt immediately enthusiastic about the atmosphere and the campus. It is, in fact, a big city full of students and really vibrant, without a need to take buses every day, since the main areas are reachable on foot. The city offers many opportunities and leisure activities. It is almost impossible to get bored in the free time.

What has been the best aspect of studying on your course and at the University so far and why?

I am proud of having chosen the MSc, as I am practising a lot in different laboratory experiments and researchers, group work and projects, analyses and assignments or presentations. I believe it is actually quite a hard course since it is fundamental to attend the lectures and be prepared; however, it is worth it and rewarding. As a matter of fact, I feel that I am improving, compared to when I was studying mainly theoretical aspects in my previous studies.

Tell us about some of the exciting projects you have completed.

One of the most important projects I am working on is New Food Product Development. It is exciting since it simulates a work situation and it is very broad in terms of required knowledge. In this project, the team is asked to develop an innovative food product for the English Market, following specific tasks.

What are your ambitions for the future?

In the future, I would like to have some work experience in a Food Industry after the graduation, possibly in the UK, otherwise around Europe. I hope that my CV would be enriched with this MSc and that I could have more future career opportunities.

What experiences at Leeds do you think will help you in your future career?

The fact of living abroad and attend a Master course is already helping me in becoming more independent and more organised. Other experiences that are helping me in terms of personality and team working could include the university projects and participation in sports societies. Moreover, I believe that the University and the Career Centre are useful supports for planning the future.

What would you say to students coming to do the same course?

I would recommend the University of Leeds and, to students interested in my field, I would give some advice about my course. I would say that it is important to be able to deal with stress, to be good at time management and to cooperate in any team activities. Even though it seems to be tough, it is rewarding. I am sure that I am improving my knowledge and my skills.