Matthew David Jones

Please tell us a bit about yourself.

Prior to becoming a Master’s student at the University of Leeds, I spent the previous three years striving to become an achiever and someone who would stand out to employers, as well as someone who could show that they cared for others. Between 2014 and 2017 I did volunteer work in Ghana and Kenya, as well as with Lancashire Constabulary as a Special Constable. These three years culminated with me achieving a 1st class BSc (Hons) degree in Policing and Criminal Investigation from the University of Central Lancashire.

What motivated you to apply for your course at Leeds?

During the final year of my undergraduate degree, my dissertation supervisor encouraged me to pursue my studies not only to Master’s level, but to do so at a red brick university. Having done volunteering abroad and also studied a module on ‘International Humanitarian and Criminal Law’, I was inspired to chase a career in humanitarian and international development work. In search of a course at a red brick university that would help me pursue this aim led me to finding the MA Conflict, Development and Security course that I am now studying for a degree in.

What is it that makes you passionate about your area of study?

What makes me passionate about my area of study are the crises that are occurring across the globe, victimising an innumerable amount of people by, for example, displacing them, injuring or killing them, and marginalising them. By studying for an MA degree in Conflict, Development and Security, I hope to enter a career that will enable me to help those who are victimised, and alleviate the issues surrounding conflicts and post-conflict environments.

What do you think of your course so far?

What I enjoyed most about my course was the optional module ‘Policing in Post-Conflict Cities’, as it enabled me to continue studying ‘policing’, which I studied at undergraduate level, but from a completely perspective due to the international, post-conflict focus. It really opened my eyes and broadened my awareness of policing as a subject of study and development.

What do you think of the facilities?

The School of Politics and International Studies, as well as the university in general, provides great facilities which form part of a fantastic learning environment.

How do you find the student support in the School?

The student support in the School of Politics and International Studies cannot be knocked, with staff happy to help solve any issues that you have and to help support your studies and progress.  Emails are frequently sent by School staff too, with information highlighting support systems.

What would you say about Leeds as a city?

Leeds is a vibrant city, with plenty going on for students to get involved in and enjoy. It is definitely a city worth living in.

What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?

I would advise prospective students to be ready to apply and push themselves if they wish to achieve, to be willing to learn and develop themselves as academics. If you come from a background that is not based in politics or international studies like myself, then let this be a wind of motivation behind you to help you develop and succeed.

What do you plan to do once you’ve finished your course?

I will initially begin a career in policing, which I start this coming September, after which I intend to pursue a career in humanitarian work and international development.