Jyotiradityasinh Vaghela (He/Him)

Student, University of Leeds
Grace Nash

Student, University of Leeds

Hi, my name is Grace and I'm a first-year Sociology student. I was given the opportunity by the Laidlaw Foundation to conduct research on the student-led project: 'Thinking Inside the Box. 

In order to fully understand the project three other Laidlaw scholars (including myself) will be conducting interviews with the students, staff and stakeholders involved in the project.

My focus for the research project will be on the pedagogic approach to 'Thinking Inside the Box' and how it allowed students to practice ownership and autonomy in designing their own authentic learning experiences and skills-development.

I would love to collaborate with other scholars who have done research into the neoliberal university structure or who are interested in it!

Megan Shaw

Student , University of Leeds

Elizabeth Stanton

International History and Politics Undergraduate, University of Leeds

  Hi! My name is Lizzie and I am in the 2023 Laidlaw Scholar cohort.

  I am an International History and Politics student at the University of Leeds. Throughout my first year of studies, I have found myself gravitating towards the field of East Asian History and Politics. In particular the politics of South Korea, especially the leadership of the 21st Century and the corruption that is rife in the government. 

  I have chosen to complete a self-defined project which will focus on how the actions of the South Korean government has affected the youth. I will be largely discussing the Sewol Ferry Tragedy and the Itaewon Crowd Crush disaster. I will be investigating the influence of chaebols and top-down culture and the roles they played in the aforementioned events. I shall also be analysing the roles of both Park Geun-hye and Yoon Suk-yeol in both disaster, respectively.  As my project is self-defined, I have a lot of leeway in what I choose to include, therefore I may touch on other topics such as the rise of anti-Feminism, particularly in young South Korean men.

  In addition to my core studies, I have a passion for language learning (especially wrongly labelled 'dead' languages) and for Islamic history, particularly the role of women in Islam. 

Linked are articles and videos that are related to my research which give a general overview of both tragedies. 


Documentary about the sinking of the Sewol Ferry 


Washington Post article regarding circumstances of Itaewon Crowd Crush 


Washington Post article which shares the names and stories of some of the victims of the Crowd Crush 


NYT article about the ongoing pain of the families following the Sewol sinking

Stella Grover

Undergraduate Student , University of Leeds

My name is Stella and I’m a scholar of 2023/2024 Laidlaw cohort. I am about to embark on my second year at the University of Leeds to study French and History. 

This summer I shall begin my research project ‘Identifying South East Asians in the French Resistance’ wherein I plan to contribute to the decolonisation of French military history, diversifying our perception of the soldiers and individuals who participated and were affected by the Resistance Movement.

Home is the southern coastal town of Eastbourne and in my spare time I play Women’s Cricket for the University of Leeds. 

I am interested in all things feminist, intersectional, colonial and sociological, if you have any questions about my research or can recommend any new books or podcasts for a fellow culture vulture, feel free to get in touch with me (Linkedin works too!) 

Blanche Marisa Tobiko

International Business Student, University of Leeds

Hello! I'm Marisa, a student at the University of Leeds and a Laidlaw Scholar of the 2023 cohort passionate about Research and Leadership. While undertaking a degree in International Business I appreciate the essence of skilled research, data-driven decisions and most importantly integral and ethical leadership. I am honoured to be part of a community of trailblazers and looking forward to this journey of gaining invaluable lessons, making great memories and building strong networks with other scholars. 

Elena Law

Student, University of Leeds

Hi, I'm Elena and I am a part of Laidlaw's 2023-24 cohort at the University of Leeds.

I am currently studying Biotechnology with Enterprise which focusses on applying aspects of molecular and cellular biology to solve current problems. This can be in the form of using genetic modification to improve food security, discovering useful antibiotic properties of bacteria or the creation of vaccines via investigation of viruses. Along side this I also have begun learning about various areas of business in my enterprise modules. 

I have chosen to work on a pre-defined research project: 'Bees, Pesticides and Insect declines: defining the sublethal effects of pesticides on honeybees'. I am excited for this project as I will be able to expand my biological knowledge into the field of entomology and continue to develop my lab-skills independently as I will be observing effects of sulfoxaflor and biological chemicals on young honey bees whilst also analysing their DNA to investigate any genetic mutations. 

I enjoy spending time walking and running (especially around my home in the Peak District), making me motivated to make a difference in conserving and rebuilding our world's natural environments. Additionally outside of my studies I love to dance (ballet, jazz, lyrical, musical theatre...), sing, attend classes with Uni's yoga society, bake and explore in & around leeds (including finding good places to eat) with my friends. 

Alice O'Neill

Student, University of Leeds

Hi, I'm Alice, a Biochemistry student at the University of Leeds. I love science as I am fascinated by understanding how life works at a chemical and cellular level, but I also have a very arty side, with passions including painting and music.  

This Summer I will be doing a research project into improving the efficiency of pig-feeding methods, to decrease environmental impact and reduce waste. I will be looking into how current phase feeding methods can be optimized by more closely meeting the nutritional requirements of the pigs at each stage. 

Ryan Oatley

Chemical and Nuclear Engineering Student, University of Leeds

I am a Chemical and Nuclear Engineering student at the University of Leeds, originally from London. 

I will be researching nanoparticle based therapeutics to combat antibiotic resistance and biofilms in chronic wound infections, under the supervision of Dr Zhan Ong.

Poppy Davey

Undergraduate LLB Law Student, University of Leeds

Hi, my name is Poppy and I am a University of Leeds Law Student. This undergraduate study has developed my passion of how the law applies to different groups of invididuals with a particular focus on the inadequate treatment of women. This interest led me to propose a self-defined research project which I am completing this summer (yay!). This surrounds how women who have been domestically abused from various social groups are treated differently by the criminal justice system. I am focusing on England and Wales since this is my jurisdiction. The social groups that I am considering are BAME, LGBTQ+ and disabled women and effectively contrasting this to the experiences of the white heterosexual woman. I am so excited to start this research and be able to inspire positive societal change through hopefully flagging up areas for further governmental emphasis. 

Alongiside this, I am so excited for next summer and completing my LIA. I can’t wait to meet and connect (whether it is in-person or virtially) with all the other scholars and develop my leadership skills. 

Outside of the scholarship, my hobbies include working out, running and finding fun ways to exercise alongside reading and journaling. 

Aditya Jindal

Laidlaw Undergraduate Leadership and Research Scholar, University of Leeds

Hello there!

I'm Aditya Jindal here, an international undergraduate student at the University of Leeds pursuing my degree in Economics and Finance.

My research project is based on cultural diversity with broader aspects of business and employability. My first summer is focused on a literature review and I'm excited about this new experience.

I'm a big sports fan with a knack for playing Table Tennis, Basketball and Cricket in particular. You could also find me regularly sitting in a library studying Business, Psychology, German, or anything else.

Always available to connect, feel free to contact me if you're interested in my research project or just want to talk in general.

Arron J Thompson

Undergraduate Physicist, University of Leeds


My name is Arron.

I am an undergraduate Physicist at the University of Leeds, currently on the Integrated Masters Programme.

I will be completing my research in the field of robotics in medicine. More specifically, the use of motion capture data for the robotic rehabilitation of patients suffering from neurological conditions and/or trauma.

I love applications of Physics in all senses, including medicine, Formula 1 and aerospace engineering.

I am looking for contacts in the field of robotics in order to collaborate and share methods of approaching what is often the exact same fundamental problem!

Vaibhav Pramode Nair

Scholar, University of Leeds

Save Soil. Visit https://consciousplanet.org/ to learn more. Let's make it happen.

Yoga above all else.

Adrianna Montgomery

Adult Nursing , University of Leeds

Hi, I am Adrianna and I am part of the 2023 Laidlaw cohort at the University of Leeds. 

I am currently studying Adult Nursing. I am passionate about everything to do with nursing. There are many pathways that I will be able to explore throughout my career. However, currently I am mostly interested in genomics and would like to explore this further throughout my studies. I also have a huge passion for women’s health, especially for different ethnic groups to be able to provide education and break through the taboo barriers. Working as an adult nurse is challenging but satisfying. It is a vital role where you will make a real difference to people’s lives. 

I am working on a pre-defined research project: ‘Evaluating Interdisciplinary 'Welcome, Induction, and Transitions' Support in the Undergraduate Curriculum.’ I will be working alongside academics and other students to understand the outcomes associated with successful transitions, using both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. I am excited for this project as I will be able to develop further knowledge outside of healthcare. The project allows us to build on leadership skills due to being student-led.  

Outside of my studies I love to paint and have a huge passion to attend galleries & exhibitions. I enjoy spending time walking in nature and doing yoga. Also, I love to bake and find good places to eat with my family and friends.  

If anyone has any interest in anything relating to myself, my course or the research project then please reach out 😊 

Isabel Westbrook

Undergraduate Laidlaw Scholar, University of Leeds

Hi! My name’s Isabel and I’m part of the 2023 cohort of undergraduate scholars. I’m really looking forward to learning more about leadership and networking.✨

I study English and Comparative Literature, from which an Intercultural Competence module has inspired my self-defined research project that I will be undertaking this summer: ‘To what extent does multilingualism impact an individual’s motivation to participate in global social action.’ I am highly interested in diplomacy, culture and entrepreneurship, as well as literature and art, and look forward to meeting individuals with those same interests.

Matt Penhaligon

Global Leadership Programmes Officer, University of Leeds

Hi, my name is Matt and I am the Global Leadership Programmes Officer at the University of Leeds. I help to manage and run the Laidlaw programme at the university.

There are 25 annual Laidlaw Scholarships that provide funding to enable you to develop leadership and research skills through a range of personal development activities and two six week periods of project work throughout your time at Leeds.
Hazel Maris

Penultimate Year LLB Law Student, University of Leeds

Hi, I’m Hazel and I’m studying Law at the University of Leeds- this year i'm specialising in International Human Rights Law and Sustainability in Companies!

I chose to study Law because, on top of it being an interdisciplinary and interesting subject, Law is a deeply flawed system in the United Kingdom and many other states. My passion involves analysing aspects of the law and how it represents historical prejudices; it’s up to our generation to replace such outdated structures for an adaptable representative model.

My research project is called “Friendship as a Method” and ventured to understand how alternative learning styles help student engage with meaningful subjects, specifically centering around pedagogical research of colonial archives. I will take this further to reflexively investigate how the archive itself can be “decolonised” by documenting events in conjunction with indigenous voices into an online space. My research supervisor Professor Anna Grimaldi is helped me to travel to the Spanish and Portuguese national colonial archives to compare how different languages document colonialism. (If you are working with archives in any of these places please contact me and I would love to discuss our projects!)

Soluna Stojanovska

student, University of Leeds

I am a student at the University of Leeds studying Civil and Environmental Engineering 

Mallika Khathuria

Student, University of Leeds

Law student at the University of Leeds, with a passion for Human Rights Law.

Lily Grace Else

Student , University of Leeds

Hi! I’m Lily and currently study advanced psychology at the university of Leeds. Theorising why something has happened is something I consider myself good at (also known as overthinking).

One of the perks of psychology is that you are forced to socialise with people, which a few years ago would have been my my introverted selfs nightmare. However, interacting with individuals from such diverse backgrounds has developed such a passion to help people and has lead to massive growths in my confidence.  Now specifically having interests in forming interventions and strategies to improve the quality of life and mental stability of vulnerable individuals from groups such as survivors of domestic abuse, service users and addicts.

My research project is called “thinking inside the box” centred around reverting back to our primary archival sources to provide a different perspective on the political resistance in Latin American rather than relying on information that has been extensively modified. Specifically introducing archive-based teaching methods and evidencing that they can act as critical and liberators pedagogies. Ultimately wanting to challenge the curriculum by using authentic methods of assessment and promote autonomous skill acquisition that provides practical application to their futures.

In my spare time I am a gym rat (unfortunately) and I like trying out new sports such as snowboarding which I am currently horrific at but it’s still very fun! 

i would love to discuss psychological research or potential career paths with new people, so do drop a message :)