As part of their prize for being named our Leidos UK Student of the Year and the AstraZeneca STEM Student of the YearAngel Maynard and Natalia Twahirwa visited New York City and Washington DC. Here, Angel shares their experience and how it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for them both. 

If I had to sum up my time in America in one phrase (other than amazing), it would be…no breathing space…whatsoever! That goes for everything. No breathing space on the subway, no breathing space on the streets because of the humidity and definitely no breathing between my belly and my jeans because of all the amazing food. Despite this, we had such a fantastic time!

I woke up with a beaming smile on my face every day because it was sure to bring something new. As part of the trip, we visited the offices of Arup, Moody’s, Citi, Leidos and Astra Zeneca, which was an amazing learning opportunity for us.


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They were all so different and everyone had so much knowledge and experience to share with us. We learnt so much from speaking to the different people there and hearing about their career journeys and all the great advice they had for us. One thing that I will miss is how many questions Natalia asked.  

Aside from all our great workplace visits, we also had the chance to do lots of fantastic touristy stuff. We went to the top of the Rockefeller Centre. We went on the Staten Island Ferry. We went on a helicopter ride over Manhattan. We watched Chicago on Broadway. And we ate until we couldn’t eat any more! 

But I’d say the most important thing we did was bond. Alison and Natalia are two people I will never forget, just like the trip to America. I’d like to thank Arup, Moody’s, Citi, Leidos and Astra Zeneca so much for providing us with this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.