Sam Lucas

Tell us about the award you have received. What does this award mean to you?

To complete my time at Exeter and win this award is vindication for the years of hard work I have put in. Often students don’t put the hard yards in until the last year, and then find it hard to make up the ground lost. Choosing to put that extra 10% in, maybe miss out of a few hockey matches, nights out or day trips to Exmouth, was a sacrifice I was willing to make for my own academic pride. However, to have an award to show for this effort and hard work makes it all the more sweet.

What has been the highlight of your time at Exeter?

Taking the opportunity to study abroad and spend 9 months in Washington DC is certainly the highlight of my time at university. The opportunities opened up by Exeter to study as such a prestigious partner university is incredible, and my time over there enhanced my whole university experience greatly, lending a different insight into my subject. Furthermore, being able to study in DC allowed me to pursue an internship that was related to my course, showing me a fantastic practical side to the theoretical study I had undertaken at Exeter.

What will you miss the most about University?

Streatham campus is a beautiful location (despite its certain 60’s concrete blocks!), and spending everyday on it whilst at university was a privilege and a fond memory. The relatively intimate setting and gorgeous green spaces, all set in Exeter’s famous (and somewhat tiring!) rolling hills, makes the perfect location to spend time learning and training for life ahead. I will miss walks on to campus and up to Forum library, during the sunshine and quiet of Easter break, to write and research my dissertation.

What did you enjoy about your particular degree programme?

The variety present in module choices was a feature I came to realise was a rarity among my peers and their courses. The ability to choose a wide variety of modules from every aspect of Economics and Politics made my time at university exciting and varied, far removed from dusty theoretical study that could easily drain the enjoyment from such a heavy course.

What advice would you give to current and future students?

Take every opportunity that is thrown your way. This is an oft cited piece of advice, but to make this an easier reality, make sure to check on university webpages, such as career zones and department sites, to check what opportunities are available. Doing this once a day for five minutes instead of catching up on Netflix will allow you to make the most of your time, and give you fantastic memories to look back on. Finally, use your peers and their contacts as much as possible. Many of my work experiences came from asking my friends if their family or friends knew of any opportunities or advice concerning my particular career path came from these, and were subsequently invaluable when it came to finding and securing graduate jobs.

What are your plans now that you have graduated?

I will soon begin my graduate scheme with Barclays in Canary Wharf, working as a risk analyst for two years. This career path only came to me during the summer between my 3rd and final year, and was a result of the fantastic careers mentor scheme run by the Career Zone. Having discovered the nature of risk analysis and management from a former Exeter student, now senior manager in Deutsche Bank, I was intrigued and excited to learn more and begin my own journey in this field.