Andy Heyes - Meet our students - University of Derby

Andy Heyes, International Hospitality Management and Culinary Arts

Andy Heyes is studying Hospitality and Culinary Arts at University of Derby. He talks about his course, the fantastic facilities and support he’s received - and explains why Derby was the No. 1 UK university for this subject in 2015.

I came to University wanting to be a chef however I am leaving the University of Derby wanting to now become a leading CEO of an international hotel corporation.

I have achieved more than I ever thought was imaginable at Derby. It has changed my perspective on life and made me realise capabilities in which I never thought I had. Sat in lectures, the lecturers test your practical and mental abilities to the maximum. There is never a “dull” lecture here at Derby. Every one is enlightening and inspiring … and combined with your peers whom quickly turn into your second family in ways, learning has never been more fun.

For myself, the difference came when I went on placement at a luxury hotel in London in March 2013. To say the experience was an eye-opener is an under-statement. My passion was merged with realism and I knew this was where I was meant to be. This was where I belonged and the world I wish to lead into the future. Since that day I haven’t looked back. I have pushed myself to the max, analysing and critically evaluating the luxury hotel market.

My efforts have brought me glimpses of success thus far. From my first publication in an academic journal, to presenting my research findings at academic/industrial conferences and even meeting a Professor who has turned into my mentor and a very good friend - he has even asked me to write a chapter in his new book!

I never imagined it happening, but I am now planning for my Masters degree later on this year. My time here at Derby has inspired me. I have loved expanding my mind, thinking outside the box and want it to continue! Who knows in the future I could be Dr. Andy Heyes!

University of Derby was the stepping stone for myself in realising what it is I wanted to do. Although studying Hospitality, the business essence surrounding all of the modules has opened my eyes to the corporate world. Something that I for one am fascinated by as we head into the future. This university doesn’t just teach you, it inspires you. The practical elements play a key role within tutorials meaning you are not sitting down reading from a book - you are hands on learning gaining the skills that employers are looking for! The lecturer’s doors are always open and the fresh, homely and welcoming breeze which sweeps across the whole university means you will never feel out of place. I would recommend this university to anyone, because it is only going to get better!

All in all, my time here at the University of Derby has been a journey I shall never forget. In 60 years’ time, I know I will look back on a successful career and say to myself “it all started at the University of Derby!”

Andy Heyes “The practical elements play a key role, meaning you are not sitting down reading from a book - you are hands on learning gaining the skills that employers are looking for!”