My name is Leilah Birchall, I’m a student currently completing my final year at the University of Leeds. I study Digital Media which involves the study of graphic design, front and back-end web development, motion graphics and media theory. I have started at Mixd on a part-time placement basis to gain some more industry experience, and I’m super excited for all that I have to learn from the team!
I am a northern girl from a town called Burnley (also an avid football fan). Recently, I’ve really got into going to the gym, although if you had told me 12 months ago that I would now love exercise I would’ve laughed in your face. I love being abroad, especially when it’s sunny; I went Interrailing in 2015 and visited 19 places in 5 weeks, I had the most incredible time – I’m desperate to travel more when I get the opportunity to! I am a keen amateur photographer, and also passionate about music (particularly, a huge fangirl for Arctic Monkeys). I’m also a little bit too obsessed with dogs, but also love cats and rabbits too, well any animal really.
I’ve just returned to university after completing a year in industry at a design and marketing agency back home (not even 5 minutes up the road from where I lived!). I enjoyed gaining industry experience and becoming more self-disciplined after working the 9-5 life. I had a flexible job role which allowed me to find out which part of the digital media industry I wanted to pursue as a career.
Initially, I was working with the digital marketing team but soon realised this wasn’t my forte. After experimenting with the graphic design team, I still didn’t feel like I was 100% comfortable in the work I was doing – even though I was enjoying the more creative aspect. Finally, after gaining some work from their web development team I realised this was the path I wanted to follow. This gave me the chance to learn how to navigate WordPress and become really comfortable with writing HTML and CSS coding.
I was aware of Mixd as some of their team had come to my university to talk in lectures. Last year, I was scrolling through LinkedIn and saw my course leader post about a 3-day workshop that Mixd were holding, called Work in the Web. I applied for it not holding out much hope that I’d be accepted onto it, as there were only 10 places, but my excitement was through the roof when I was!
This workshop introduced me to how Mixd operates as a company, advanced coding techniques and tutorials on these. I was really impressed by everything they showed me and was eager to gain some work experience with them (only expecting a week or two!). After the workshop, I sent across a keen email and was notified that there was a placement position available for the year – 2 interviews later and here I am!
I’m really excited for my future here at Mixd, to develop more web development skills with help from the expert team and to possibly experiment in new fields.