David Tyoember

David Tyoember

Second-year chemistry student

When did you realise you wanted to study a STEM subject?

I had a strong interest in science and wanted to do something science-related since I was 10 years old.

What led you to studying at Imperial?

Initially I didn't really see how I could fit into the context of going to university, and also to an extent I was afraid of what would happen if I got rejected by every university I applied to. Because of this I did not apply to university during Year 13 and didn't really have any intention of applying in the following year.

What changed was that an uncle of mine came to live with us temporarily. Whilst he was around, serendipity just so had it that a copy of my A-Level results form was lying on the table, and he picked it up and read it.

I was in the kitchen, but heard a loud expression of surprise from him. Earlier on during his stay he had seen me dismantle a broken kettle to its constituent components, fix it and re-assemble it. He felt I had a lot to lose by not going to university and must have decided that he would persuade me to go.

He spent the next two weeks with that mission in mind. This was very late December, so applications were closing in about three weeks’ time. His persuasion, encouragement and explaining how university would benefit me and the science-related projects I was working on was effective: one week later, I started on my personal statement and submitted my application to study chemistry. I was very surprised when I got five unconditional offers and decided to choose Imperial.

If you could improve one thing at Imperial what would it be?

I would work on improving the orientation process for first-generation university students, who may it useful to have extra support on figuring out how to make the most of their time at university.