Naomi Woerlen

Naomi Woerlen

Naomi studied Economics & Mathematics BSc (Industrial) at the University of Leeds and now works at EY in Frankfurt in Financial Accounting Advisory Services.

Choosing Leeds

When choosing which university to study at, Naomi wanted to be on a vibrant campus and have the opportunity to enrich her studies. She said “I really liked the vibe when I visited Leeds on the Open Days. It had a really nice community feeling, which was amplified by the buzzing and vibrant campus life. 

I was also really attracted by the opportunities to study and work abroad as part of a degree. One of the things that really solidified my decision was the huge offering of scholarships, particularly those aimed at people from disadvantaged backgrounds. I feel that I really benefitted from that added support going into my degree.”

Since graudatinng 

Since finishing her studies, Naomi has moved to Frankfurt, Germany to start a career in finance. She said “I accepted the graduate position at EY in Frankfurt that was offered to me upon completion of my Year in Industry, which I undertook there as part of my degree. I work in Financial Accounting Advisory Services, which falls under the Assurance service line. I recently decided to enhance my knowledge and add to my experience gained by pursuing my chartered accountancy qualification.”

Experiences at Leeds 

Studying at Leeds offers more than just a degree, there is a huge range of networks, programmes, and events to get involved in. Naomi said “As a Scholarship Ambassador and Plus Programme member, I had the privilege of regularly being involved with networking events, talks, and interviews with a plethora of Leeds alumni.

It was very eye-opening to speak directly with the alumni and hear where their paths had taken them upon graduation. More importantly, it was a privilege to receive support, advice, and mentorship from these alumni and to use the things that I had learned to then shape my own career. Knowing the steps that a successful person took in order to reach their goals makes success seem so much more attainable. I’m forever grateful for those unique opportunities.”

Industrial placement year 

I enjoyed being able to have a real-world application for what I was learning at university, and it was a great insight into the working world.

Naomi Woerlen

After her second year of study, Naomi undertook an industrial placement year. She said “Another thing that definitely helped with my career was the Year in Industry I undertook at EY in Germany. I considered for a while whether to study abroad or do a placement year in the UK, but decided a hybrid mix of the two options would suit me best.

I enjoyed being able to have a real-world application for what I was learning at university, and it was a great insight into the working world. Putting in all the hard work as an intern helped me to get my foot in the door by securing me a graduate position and kickstarting my career in finance.”

Activities outside of study

Leeds has one of the largest student unions in the country. Leeds University Union (LUU) exists to represent, support and entertain students. Naomi said “Whilst at Leeds, I was an avid salsa dancer as part of the Salsa Society. I was also on the Badminton team and played for the Maths Society Netball team.

As a Scholarship Ambassador, I regularly volunteered at events set up by the Alumni and Development Team and enjoyed sharing my personal experiences with the alumni in the form of speeches at some of these events, including at the Scholars Reception.”

Advice and tips

We asked Naomi what she would say to future students. She said “I personally quite enjoyed the fact that my course was joint honours as it provided the variety that I was looking for in my studies. It also ensured that my career options were kept slightly wider open than if I had taken the single honours route. I would say to future students though, that they should consider the fact that studying joint honours can be a lot more full-on than single honours. 

The structure of the course is a lot more rigid with less wiggle room for module preferences and I found that I also had twice the number of lectures and workshops than my single honours counterparts. It can be more challenging, but I think that the reward is worth it.”

Find out more about our Economics and Mathematics BSc here.