The Force was with Aishwarya Sridhar when she started her placement year at the Walt Disney Company.
The Accounting and Finance student from De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) had the chance to volunteer at the Star Wars Celebration at ExCel London.
She said: "Being such a big Star Wars fan I knew this opportunity was going to be once in a lifetime.
"The highlight was seeing so many people committed to the franchise. I also got a glimpse of Mark Hamill, aka Luke Skywalker."
For Aishwarya it was the start of what has been a fairy tale year working as an audit intern at Disney Consumer Products, one of the five main divisions of the Walt Disney Company.
Duties have included preparing detailed audit files, assisting in the audit selection process and collaborating on audit engagements.
Aishwarya said: "It has been a truly memorable and challenging experience that I am so proud to be a part of. Working there was magical.
"Disney has been truly beneficial for me in terms of the standard and level of companies I need to aim for.
"I was able to do this because of the opportunity that DMU provides for its students to achieve the impossible."
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Born in Dubai, Aishwarya had always wanted to study in the UK, drawn to DMU because of the chance to go out in the business world and experience "the real deal" as well as interact with and learn about other cultures.
"I am proud to say I have accomplished this," she said.
Course highlights include the Management Reporting and Corporate Finance modules, the latter proving "really useful" during Aishwarya's placement, which she landed with help from the business and law placement unit.
Due back at DMU this September, Aishwarya is looking forward to catching up with friends and meeting her professors.
Having previously been a member of societies and clubs including Tamil, Harry Potter, Badminton and Basketball, she will be getting back into sports and continue volunteering through DMU Square Mile.
Her advice to fellow international students is that while applying to study in the UK feels daunting, it is worth it, with her experiences in Leicester proving even more positive than she could have imagined.
"Studying at DMU or anywhere abroad helps you encounter people of different cultures and gives you a chance to be a part of an exciting adventure," added Aishwarya, who plans to stay on for a master's to further boost her employability.
"I have had the privilege to meet so many students from different countries and I never thought that those people would turn out to be friends for life."
Posted on Wednesday 9th August 2017