Black History Month

In the UK, Black History Month is observed in October. To celebrate, our black students and alumni will be sharing some fresh perspectives and inspiring stories with you. Stay tuned!

Follow #LSEEconBHMTakeover on Instagram to join the conversation!

MM-ML-BHMLeft to right: Michael Lemoru, BSc Economics 2019 (now Investment Banking Analyst at Deutsche Bank) and Meido Nkotochou, BSc Economics (second year)

In conversation with Michael Lemoru (BSc Economics 2019)

For the first day of our Black History Month campaign, we are proud to present Michael Lemoru, an alumnus of the LSE Economics department, who currently works at Deutsche Bank as an investment banking analyst. During his second year at LSE, Michael was also the President of the African-Caribbean Society (ACS). Despite his busy schedule, we managed to catch him for a brief conversation on his journey to and through LSE, his time at the ACS, his love for Economics and some gems of wisdom!

This conversation was hosted by the Economics department’s very own Meido Nkotochu, a second year BSc Economics student. Enjoy! 

Meido: Could you give a brief overview of your background and journey up to getting accepted into LSE?

Michael: I was born and raised in south-east London to Nigerian parents.

I went to a comprehensive secondary school and then grammar school for sixth form where I studied maths, further maths, economics and politics. My interest in economics came across from my business teacher in secondary school who had also studied economics at university. So, that prompted me to study economics at A level, which I really enjoyed. I consequently ended up choosing economics for my UCAS.

Of course, LSE was always on my radar having grown up in London, I knew of it from a young age, went there for school trips and taster courses. So, the offer to study Economics there was a big achievement.

Meido: What role did the African-Caribbean Society (ACS) play in your overall social life at uni - and why go for President?

Michael: I think for anyone who's joining university as an ethnic minority, these societies play a huge role in their time at LSE. Even before I started, I knew of the ACS across different universities, and I wanted to get involved. It was a great time to connect with people from a similar background and heritage, and other cultures as well on the continent and in the Caribbean, to build that family away from home.

The reason I ran for president was because the ACS had such a profound effect on my first year that I wanted to elevate the society and implement any improvements I felt could be made, just making sure that there would be a positive impact on the next crop of students to join the ACS.

Meido: Do you have any ACS highlights?

Michael: A key highlight for me, and I think for a lot of people who join the ACS at LSE is our annual culture show Ablaze, which is a cultural showcase event focused on the countries represented within the ACS. We represent this through dance, singing, acting and fashion. In the year I was elected as president, we managed to secure the Peacock Theatre for our Ablaze show which was a massive step up because we had access to all the professional settings in terms of the lights, the props etc. This really enabled us to elevate the showcase to new heights that it had never reached before, and of course we exceeded expectations as we managed to have the highest attendance that the show has ever achieved. So, that was a great highlight!

Meido: What was your initial impression of the BSc Economics course and how did that change throughout your time at LSE?

Michael: I definitely enjoyed my second and third years more than my first, because first year was very maths and stats focused. I didn’t feel that I was doing as much economics as I should have been doing. First year is a bit of a grind but I understand why they make it very mathematical and statistical - the core concepts are important. In second and third year, though, we got a bit more optionality in our modules, and we also just got to study a bit more economics which I thoroughly enjoyed.

The Econometrics module was one of my favourites, simply because it brings to life the concepts learnt and shows you how you can use statistics and analytical data to look for trends, and come to your own conclusions and hypotheses as well.

Meido: Do you have any advice that you would have given to your younger self and that you could give to LSE Economics Students in general?

Michael: My advice to my younger self would be to probably utilise more of the resources that were available in the Economics department. I don't think I maximised that enough especially in my first year. So I’d definitely make use of that if I were to go again.

Meido: Do you have any advice to students embarking on their career search? How did you navigate it?

Michael: Yes, of course. The career search is quite tough especially when you're trying to balance that in tandem with the rigorous requirements of studying Economics at LSE. But I'd say, it would help to be sure to explore as many options as you can and to consider the different industries you can get into. Also, don't try to do too much to get pigeonholed into the typical industry, or industries, that your peers go into post-university. I think there can be a lot of peer pressure in that regard but you should do as much research as you can. Make sure that you apply to places in which you have a passionate and genuine interest.

Meido: Finally- what’s your favourite spot on campus?

Michael: My favourite spot on campus has to be the sixth floor of the NAB where you just have a beautiful view across London. I think that's many people's favourite spot as well. I think that spot is a gem.


October 2020