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Clearing Success Stories – De Montfort University

Alicia and Aaroon both used UCAS Clearing to get onto courses at De Montfort University.

DMU Clearing student Alicia's cosmetics to line shelves of big-name stores

Alicia and Aaroon, DMU
Alicia and Aaroon

Health and beauty products developed by a Pharmaceutical and Cosmetic Science (PCS) student are now in production. Alicia Keenan – who came to De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) through Clearing – researched, formulated and developed shampoos, conditioners, moisturisers and more during her placement year with Reabrook.

Alicia started a lab technician role with the speciality chemical products manufacturer, based in Moira, Leicestershire. She credits her course, and modules on compounding and testing the functionality of ingredients, with making her 'industry-ready'.

"I was so excited because I wanted a year out to gather my thoughts and I wanted to gain experience in a professional science environment," said Alicia, from Ashby in Leicestershire.

Her placement ‘ticked all the boxes’.

Alicia said: "Customers sent in briefs and I researched existing products, came up with formulae and developed them, making any required changes.”

Following a year out after A-levels to work full-time in the pharmacy where she had a weekend job, Alicia was offered an apprenticeship as a dispensing technician.

Then one of the pharmacists pulled her aside and said she should go to university. Applying late in the year, Alicia took advantage of Clearing.

She said: "I knew DMU had a good reputation for Pharmacy but that my A-levels weren't quite good enough, so I looked for an alternative and found PCS.

"I saw it as an opportunity to transfer after a year if my grades were good enough. I rang up and everyone was really nice and helpful."

But Alicia enjoyed her first year so much she didn't want to change course.

"I love the degree because it’s science-based. It's such a good course. I'm glad," she added.

Aaroon's investment in career development pays off with graduate role 

The employability support offered at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) helped Aaroon Younis land a coveted place on a graduate scheme.

The Accounting and Business Management student took a role as a corporate banking analyst at British multinational investment bank Barclays, in Birmingham.

Aaroon attended the CV and cover letter-writing workshops and assessment centres offered through #DMUworks, the university's careers programme, after seeking support to land a placement.

Although he didn't initially apply for DMU, he had attended an Open Day with a friend and after seeing the campus and finding out more about the courses available, on A-level results day he accepted an offer from DMU.

He said: "I looked at DMU's employability figures, in the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education report, and I had a great experience at Open Day, which swayed my opinion – plus DMU offered a placement.”

After joining through Clearing, Aaroon made the most of the DMU experience. He volunteered with three projects aimed at improving children's skills in maths and computing – Mathletics, Excel Yourself and Playdough – through the #DMUlocal initiative.

He said: "It was a nice experience, with the double benefit of my being able to help influence young people's outlook of finance and boost their skills, while enhancing my teaching and leadership skills."