We had the pleasure to have the one and only Leonard Sekyonda, founder of MYCOMEUP, visiting to inspire 3rd-year Business Management and Marketing students while leading a workshop at our university, Leonard spoke about his life, and the struggles he faced during his childhood, from moving house and school multiple times to becoming the man of the house following the death of his dad when he was still a kid. Moreover, he spent a good amount of time speaking about his friendship group. He insisted that in order to level up, you will need to leave some of your friends behind and you cannot force people to level up with you, so sometimes it’s easier to say goodbye than waste your energy. He spoke about his whole career, from the beginning to his own company MYCOMEUP, and to his next goals, both from a business perspective and personal perspective.
MYCOMEUP: A self-made man
Even though he was speaking to a crowd of undergraduates, Leonard kept remarking the fact that he is the definition of a real “self-made man”, and he became successful without getting a degree, but just through hard work, self-education, reading, creativity and filling up the gaps in the market. He pointed out that getting a degree sure helps get you in, but it’s your skills, your creativity and determination that will take you far.
Students thoughts after meeting Leonard
Marka Sy: Before meeting Leonard, I didn’t necessarily have a belief that the things I wanted to achieve were actually doable due to a plethora of reasons. However, after meeting him and seeing the similarities between us two, besides skin colour, it really lit a fire inside of me. I’m extremely grateful for the experience.
Lee Spranger: I found Leonard’s talk to be very inspiring as he gave an insight into the career path I want to pursue, which is an estate agent.
Gazwa Basma: I had the opportunity to attend a workshop with Leonard, who shared his experiences discovering his passion, developing his career, and overcoming obstacles in his career. Talking us through his professional journey and allowing us to ask him questions was extremely beneficial and insightful as we learned the importance of being resilient in a working environment as an individual that belongs to a minority group. This has inspired me to recognise my worth and view any hardships as an opportunity to grow and advance in my career.
Emaan Ahsan: I had the opportunity to attend the session with Leonard. I’m glad I had this chance as it helped me gain insight on his struggles and how he overcame them. I was very inspired by the way he kept getting into new business ideas and how he didn’t just settle for one thing but kept seeking new opportunities. He answered all the questions we asked him without hesitation and was very confident in his answers.
Ragulan Sivarajah: I had the privilege to meet and converse with Leonard Sekyonda and it was an eye-opening experience. Attending his workshop and listening to his journey as well as the various experiences he has been through, was inspiring. It taught me various lessons and it reaffirmed my belief that my vision and future goals are very much achievable. His journey showed me that where he is now, is fruit of all the perseverance, sacrifice and hard work he has put in. This has definitely inspired me to push myself and persevere towards my goal and hopefully one day I will have a story to tell just like Leonard Sekyonda.
Cem Dumenci: In life, it’s important to listen and understand other people’s journeys, failures and successes. Meeting Leonard Sekyonda gave me an insight into the reality of how working hard will result in success. Leonard is a visionary, someone who has a wide view of life and only thinks of the positives within society. He taught me how making mistakes along the way is justifiable and how giving up is not the answer. Perseverance is key in life, which was apparent through Leonard’s workshop. Listening to Leonard made me rethink my current work ethic, and for that, I will be forever grateful for the time he had given us.
Abdul Sare: I am really grateful for having had the chance to meet Leonard. He is a very well-cultured and ambitious person. Speaking with him has been very helpful as it permitted me to broaden my knowledge about marketing departments and Digital Branding.
Matewos Abera Jote: I had the unique opportunity to attend Leonard’s workshop. Listening to his touching story and how he turned things around was very inspiring. Moreover, looking at a black person who is living the life he always wanted, without education, who keeps striving for more even if he has more than enough to be in peace with himself, actually gives me hope that the situation is slowing changing and there might be an exciting future for me out there as well.
Lauren Nader: Leonard’s visit was thoroughly inspirational because he showed us that with hard work, determination and self-belief, anything is possible. Listening to his speech, that was both insightful and motivational, allowed for not only career advice to be shared but life advice too. A special moment was when he informed us that he prefers to work with optimistic people because they allow a positive working environment, which he thrives from! This really mirrors his values that enjoying what you do is key.
Written by Abdul Sare, Matewos Abera Jote and Lauren Nader. Toba Adebola and Minh Van Nguyen also actively supported on the day of the talk.
Leonard’s visit to the University of Westminster has been very helpful because, in addition to broadening the knowledge of many Business Management BA and Marketing students with precious information about the field, it has also motivated many students to be curious, resilient and determined. Leonard’s experience in business led him to advise students to believe in themselves as there is nothing more powerful than self-esteem and also to accept failures that will cross their professional careers and personal lives because they are the best teacher of success. Leonard Sekyonda on behalf of the University of Westminster, we would like to express our immense gratitude for having shared your knowledge with our students!
👉 Currently on my placement year as Marketing Intern!
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