2000s Alumni profile

Dr Meir Ben Ytzchak, Master of Business Administration, 2001

What is your current or most recent job title?

Head of the Center for Jewish Studies at the Lookstein Center in Bar Ilan University, Israel.

Please tell us a brief summary of your career to date since graduation

  • Academic Director of the Virtual Center for Jewish Studies, Lookstein Center, Bar- Ilan University (2002-)
  • Invited lecturer at the University of Chile, Sao Paulo University and University of Cordoba (Argentina) to international seminars on issues of education and  Jewish philosophy.
  • Guest speaker for the Israeli Foreign Ministry to Training Courses in Educational Technology internship abroad.
  • Member of the Editorial Board of the "Journal of Jewish Studies", University of Chile, Faculty of Philosophy.
  • Member of the Organizing Committee of the International Academic Conference on "Navarra and the Golden Age in Spain", Tudela, Spain (2006).


  • "Introduction to Philosophy and Jewish Thought" (2002). Universidade Caxias do Sul, Brazil.
  • “Some answers to many questions about Judaism" (2004). Ed. Yeshurun, Israel.
  • "Jewish History: When the past is present at every step of the Future" (2006). Ed. Yeshurun, Israel.
  • "Maimonides: Reason, Knowledge and Faith" (2011). The Lookstein Center, School of Education, Bar Ilan University.

Academic articles

  • The message of the Shoa, 2002, Conference in the Center for Jewish Studies, University Caxias do Sul, Brazil.
  • Maimonides: the validity of his message, 2010, Journal of Jewish Studies, University of Chile.
  • Science, literature and Jewish ethics in the works of Rabbi Levi ben Gershon, Rabbi Moses Chaim Luzzatto and Rabbi Yehuda ben Betzalel Loeb, 2013 , Journal of Jewish Studies, University of Chile.

International awards

  • Medal for academic excellence, Technological University of Peru, 2013.

What were the biggest challenges you have faced within your education and career history? What advice would you give to anyone in a similar position? 

The biggest challenge in my professional career was and continues to be managing to adapt study programs and train teachers in a continuously changing society. The best advice I can give my young colleagues is that in the face of any challenge, never give up your personal values and intellectual integrity.

What were your motivations for enrolling on a course at the University of Leicester?

The prestige and good name of the University of Leicester in the world.

How did your course and your experience in Leicester aid your personal and professional development?

My MBA in Educational Management studies provided me with many and varied work tools to improve my professional life.

What would you tell your younger self if they were just starting out at the University of Leicester?

I am happy with my decision since the distance studies are perfectly adapted to my schedule and the contents of the courses meet my expectations and professional needs.

Anietie Isong, MA Communications, 2005

As an executive speechwriter, Anietie Isong’s current role involves writing high quality, personalised speeches to convey appropriate company messages and advance strategic vision. Anietie tells us ‘It is an exciting role. One day I might be writing about the future of oil and gas, and the next day I am writing about local content or job creation’.

Having previous experience as a speechwriter for a multinational oil company helped Anietie in the recruitment process for his current role with Saudi Aramco, the state-owned oil company of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and a fully integrated, global petroleum and chemicals enterprise.

Anietie’s motivations for studying at the University of Leicester stemmed from the reputation of the Department of Communications. Having a keen interest in the role of communication in our society and how new forms of media started to influence traditional media, he was also attracted to the diversity of Leicester City.

The range of areas and possibilities of working in communications spreads far afield, however Anietie would like to remain in the field of speechwriting, after already gaining experience as a journalist and public relations manager.

In the world of communications, it has been important for Anietie to be versatile and keep with trends. ‘Social media is an emerging field that has radically changed the way people communicate. If you want to be a journalist or go into PR, you need to understand social media.’

After completing his MA, Anietie was offered a job at the University as the PR Manager for the Students’ Union. As well as handling all PR activities for the Union, Anietie was responsible for organising the Freshers’ Fair. He believes this role helped him launch his career in the world of public relations.

Some of Anietie’s best friends, are those he met at Leicester. Whilst studying here, he discovered that he is a great team player. He learnt how to work well with people through group assignments and projects and also rediscovered his writing skills.

Anietie recalls how wireless and mobile internet was not a common thing when he was a student. ‘There was no smart phones to check emails, and my hall of residence, at the time had no internet connection. I was always using the computer rooms in Percy Gee building, the library or the Charles Wilson building. But it was great fun.’

In the ever-changing 21st Century, it feels as though we could wake up tomorrow and the way we communicate could be sent on a completely new spin. With an MA in Communications and a strong repertoire of skills and experience on his CV, Anietie Isong clearly stays ahead of his own game, resulting in a successful career in public relations and communications and only a continuing hopeful future to say the least.

Suresh Kumar Nair, Security and Organisational Risk Management MSc, 2006

Suresh Kumar Nai headshotWhat is your current or most recent job title?

MD and CEO.

Please tell us a brief summary of your career to date since graduation

I had the strong background of National Security with the Intelligence Bureau, Government of India before joining the Department of Criminology, to pursue my postgraduate course in Security and Organizational Risk Management in 2004.

The course provided me with a complete overhaul of my security knowledge and made me an expert on Business Security and Risk Management. Thus I found a new direction in my career path in the area of Corporate Security and Risk Management in 2006 and was able to prove my functional competency in contributing to business goals in various International and National business organizations in India and UAE.

The academic exposure I gained at Department of Criminology transformed me into a person who could analyze the offender behavior and criminal situations that affect the business, managing the business risks at the strategic levels in different organizations. It further enhanced my knowledge on transnational organized crimes, transnational policing, geopolitical risks both in business and regional security. Today, I stand tall as a resource person in these areas. Life at the University of Leicester was a window to the rest of the world and brought in an international perspective and vision to my life thereafter.

I am the first from the Indian Police Fraternity to have obtained a postgraduate degree in Security and Organizational Risk Management from University of Leicester and also has the distinction being the only one from Kerala, the southern state in the Indian Union.

What were your motivations for enrolling on a course at the University of Leicester?

I have a passion for security and crime studies and the University of Leicester was the only one which conducted a postgraduate course on security management under the criminology department at the time.

How did your course and your experience in Leicester aid your personal and professional development? 

It was an absolute experience of professional knowledge and development coupled with unmatched international exposure to multinational and multicultural perspectives of life.

Dr Suzie Imber, PhD Planetary Science, 2008

Dr Suzie Imber is an associate professor of Planetary Science and an alum of our University, having studied for her PhD (Named: Auroral and Ionospheric Flow Measurements of Magnetopause Reconnection during Intervals of Northward Interplanetary Magnetic Field) in the Department of Physics and Astronomy under the supervision of Professor Steve Milan.

Competing in BBC Two’s ‘Astronauts: Do You Have What It Takes?’ gave her the perfect opportunity of moving a step closer to realising her dream of becoming an astronaut. Suzie, who was crowned winner of the series, was one of 12 exceptional applicants asked to participate in the programme, from thousands who had applied. Famous astronaut and former Commander of the International Space Station, Chris Hadfield, former NASA medical researcher Dr Kevin Fong, and psychologist Dr Iya Whiteley, were among those who selected applicants.

Suzie said: “Taking part was an incredible experience for me, and enabled me to try things I would never have had a chance to do otherwise.

“The other candidates were amazing, and it was a pleasure to get to know them. We’re a tight knit bunch and we have stayed in touch. I’ve never met such an interesting, talented, well-rounded, intelligent group of people in my life!

“The programme has inspired me to apply for the next ESA astronaut selection process.”

She has held posts at NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre and the University of Michigan, and is currently involved in instrument design and operation for ESA’s next mission to Mercury. Suzie is also an elite rower and a highly-experienced mountaineer.

Interested in space from a young age, Suzie has spent her academic career looking at our solar system – her current research looks at terrestrial space weather and Mercury’s magnetosphere. Alongside this, she has also written computer code to identify and map unclimbed peaks in the Andes and Himalayas before setting off to climb them herself.

Will Tudor, BA English, 2008

Will Tudor is an actor and alumnus of the University of Leicester. Perhaps best known for playing Olyvar in the popular HBO TV drama Game of Thrones, Will also played Odi in Channel 4's Humans, alongside a film role in Tomorrow, executive produced by Martin Scorsese.

In this interview Will discusses his memories of studying English Literature at the University of Leicester between 2005 - 2008 and his fond experiences of the city and campus, including visiting the Students' Union with Leicester University Theatre, of which he was an active member.

Christine Weitbrecht, Communications, Media and Society BSc, 2009

Christine Weitbrecht headshotWhat is your current or most recent job title?

Head of Strategic Projects and Licensing.

Please tell us a brief summary of your career to date since graduation

Following my graduation from the University of Leicester, my career took the following path:

  • Master of Communication Management, University of Southern California, USA, 2010-2011
  • Junior Social Communication Manager, cosnova GmbH, Germany, 2012-2015
  • Blogger Relations Manager, cosnova GmbH, Germany, 2015-2016
  • MBA Program at HEC Paris, 2016-2018
  • Assistant to Managing Director (Chief of Staff), Denk Pharma GmbH & Co. KG, Germany, 2018-2020
  • Head of Strategic Projects and Licensing, Denk Pharma GmbH & Co. KG, Germany, 2018-2020

What were the biggest challenges you have faced within your education and career history? What advice would you give to anyone in a similar position?

Both my degree and my professional experience are rather broad and general - which I love. However, this can be a challenge when looking for jobs, both for myself in terms of finding something that would be a good and logical next step (but also for recruiters, as I don't fit into a neat and clear-defined box).

I'd recommend to anyone else in a similar position to, first of all, not let anyone tell you that your interest in many different things instead of just one thing is wrong; it's a strength to be able to look beyond one particular path. Secondly, even if your interests are varied, there are usually one or two core things that recur in every job and experience that you enjoy the most. What is that? What type of things do you like to do on a daily basis? For me, it is connecting people across an organisation, and connecting ideas from different backgrounds, to solve a problem. I think holistically, and I want to bring about change. So, instead of asking, "what follows my current job title X?", I focus on "which other roles can I apply the thing(s) I love to do on a daily basis" and take it from there.

It isn't easy and it can be frustrating at times, but so far, I've always ended up in positions that I thoroughly enjoyed.

What were your motivations for enrolling on a course at the University of Leicester?

Coming out of school, I was looking for a course that would allow me to pursue many different social sciences instead of just one. Communications was the perfect solution for this. While I applied to several universities, campus visits ultimately convinced me of the University of Leicester, combined with its long-standing history and expertise in the field.

How did your course and your experience in Leicester aid your personal and professional development?

On a personal level, I really enjoyed the many different experiences that Leicester's social life offered. I was able to try out many different things and connect with many different people, which got me in touch with views and perspectives that I wouldn't have otherwise. Moreover, as an international student, living and studying in Leicester really immersed me in the culture and has given me a very distinct edge when it comes to speaking the English language.

Professionally, the scientific approach which we learnt during our BSc has helped me greatly in solving challenges at work. Similarly, having learnt to research and to approach a new subject matter in a structured way has allowed me to quickly grasp new concepts and ideas, and to get the hang of new subjects in no time. This, too, has given me an edge, and has gotten me to where I am today.

What would you tell your younger self if they were just starting out at the University of Leicester?

Have fun! The next three years will be among the best of your life.

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