Class notes – 2000s

Alumnus Adrian Potter (BSc Environmental Sciences, 2003) decided to study environmental sciences at the University of Southampton as a mature student, at the age of 27.

“It remains to this day one of the best decisions of my life so far. It was such an amazing time!”

Prior to university, Adrian spent a considerable time working as a well-qualified engineer in the UK manufacturing sector to management level.

“This was never the right fit for my career and university is where my outlook was completely broadened. I learnt so much about myself as well as my degree subject, which enabled me to pursue my talent for physical geography, water, rivers and the environment. I now work in flood risk management, which is such an in-demand and niche area right now.

“My successful time at Southampton – academically, socially and personally was literally a life-changing experience. I’m not convinced I would have got the same benefit had I studied elsewhere.

“If I was to give any advice to prospective students, I highly recommend fully embracing every aspect of student life head-on. From the inevitable fun mid-week nights out with new friends (some of whom will remain friends for many years to come), to joining one of the myriad of university clubs and societies, through to even giving some of your time to committees like the Athletic Union (great for the CV). Oh, and there is also the minor aspect of study and revision!

“Whenever I look back to my student days, it is always with fond memories and the awareness I am privileged to be a Southampton alumnus.”


Alumna Sarah Chapman (BSc Chemistry, 2005) recently won a WeAreTheCity award as one of the top five rising stars in technology.

The Rising Star awards showcase the UK pipeline of female talent below management and aim to create 100 female role models across 20 different industries and professions. After graduating from Southampton with a Chemistry degree, Sarah joined diversified technology company 3M in order to use her scientific skills in a commercial environment. She has had a variety of technical roles including approvals administrator, technical service engineer, regulatory specialist and build project manager for a multi-million pound Customer Innovation Centre.

Sarah has also aided in the education of thousands of students by: hosting work placements, supporting science and code clubs, and organising STEM career events. She was also instrumental in the development of 3M Careerwise and contributed to 3M’s Big Tick Education award in 2011.


Alumnus Dylan Hopkinson (BA Archaeology, MA Maritime Archaeology, 2007) s currently taking a career break to bicycle around the world and participate in international archaeological excavations.

He will be taking up to four years and hopes to be involved in both maritime and terrestrial archaeological research while also fundraising for the International Rescue Committee. For more information, visit Dylan’s Justgiving page.


English graduate Jennifer Monks (BA English, 2008) is currently producing a short film, Being Keegan. The film is a psychological, coming-of-age drama from award-winning and BAFTA shortlisted director and producer Stephanie Zari, and Kenneth Branagh.

The screenplay is by award-winning playwright Jilly Gardiner, and the film stars BAFTA nominated actor Stephen Graham (This is England, Boardwalk Empire, Pirates of the Caribbean). The film addresses themes of childhood post-traumatic stress disorder, guilt, hope and redemption, with a narrative that take place across the 1970s, 80s and present day.

With 70 per cent of the film shot – the producers are launching a crowdfunding campaign to finish the film and bring this ambitious short to the audience. Jennifer would love support from her fellow University of Southampton alumni. Why not get involved and help Jennifer finish her film?

You can find out more on the full press release and also watch the teaser.

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