UCL News


Seven Questions with... Jim Onyemenam

24 January 2020

This week we meet Jim, Postgraduate Students’ Officer at Students' Union UCL. Here, Jim shares some of his favourite highlights from his time at UCL, including directing a film for Film Society and discovering an amazing viewpoint near campus. He's also a Hamilton fan...

Jim Onyemenam

What are you studying, why are you interested in this subject and what do you plan to do in the future? 

Before I became Postgraduate Students’ Officer, I was doing a Masters in Law (specialising in Legal Theory). It’s pretty cool trying to figure out the answers to the questions of ‘what exactly is Law?’, ‘why do we obey the Law?’, ‘how does Law affect behaviour?’ and ‘how important is the Law?’. As I was doing my Masters, I planned on staying within academia going into a teaching role, but the role of Postgraduate Students’ Officer has been so fulfilling and fun that work in a Students’ Union now seems like a calling. 

What is the most interesting thing you’ve done, seen or got involved with while at UCL? 

This is a hard one! I got involved in so much in my first year here. I’d say the most interesting thing was directing the term two film for Film Society. I’ve directed stuff before, but this was the biggest project I’d worked on – a gangster thriller set in North London about a young guy on the run from the mob. I learnt so much making it – working with stunt doubles, fake glass, smoke and fog, replica weapons, and sharpening my VFX and editing skills. It was great! 

Have you discovered any hidden gems during your time at UCL? 

The view from the top floor of Torrington Place – Arena Centre. Check it out! 

Give us your top three things to do/see/go to in London: 

  1. Hamilton. 
  2. Hamilton. 
  3. Hamilton. 

If you were Provost for the day what one thing would you do? 

I’d improve the student voice by encouraging the use of our Student Media in all university media projects. We have a very skilled and talented student body who would relish the opportunity. 

Who inspires you and why? 

Who do I pick? Brit Marling – she’s an amazing writer and producer (Film and TV) known best for The OA (objectively Netflix’s craziest show) who graduated valedictorian and ran away from a corporate finance job to make films. She changed the way films (particularly female-led sci-fi’s/drama) are structured and written and is basically the kind of person I dream of being. Plus, I’m already half-way there, what with me being a corporate runaway (ex-PwC). 

What would it surprise people to know about you? 

I wrote a musical.