Univ Dates: 2018-2011
Degree: BA Psychology, Physiology and Philosophy
Degree Level: Undergraduate
Occupation: HRBP Refreshment R&D, Unilever
Biography: After graduating from Oxford in 2011, Aimée took the opportunity to travel to Panama and Nepal, where she volunteered at an orphanage and trekked to Everest Base Camp. She also continued to coach Univ Women’s 1st Eight and was a lifeguard at the London 2012 Olympic Games. She then started her role at Unilever on their Future Leaders Programme in 2013, completing this and moving to her current role in 2015. In her spare time she competes in triathlons, and qualified for the Ironman World Championships in Kona. At Univ she coxed the Men’s First Eight for Univ Boat Club in 2011 and was stroke and 6 in Women’s First Eight in 2010 and 2009 respectively. She was also a member of the Oxford University Women’s Lightweight Rowing Club Blue Boat throughout her time at Univ and President in 2011. She was Plumptre Major Exhibitioner in 2010.
Can you tell us what are you doing now?
I’m an HR Business Partner at Unilever; I’m currently partnering a group of R&D scientists that work in our refreshment category – basically tea and ice cream – they design those products that appear in our brands.
I kind of reluctantly ended up in HR, both of my parents were in HR but when I was here I wasn’t really thinking about it, I was doing too much other stuff and took the year after Univ to start thinking about what I wanted to do. I did a couple of interviews for consultancies – the classic stuff – but hated it.
How was your social life at Univ?
I rowed at lot, so all of the social side was rowing really. I coached the torpids crews because I did blues and so was mainly doing university level sport. In terms of the socials that I come back to time and again it’s the rowing, the Summer Eights… I still come back at least twice a year.
Can you recall your first day at Univ?
It was pretty scary. I was on Logic Lane, loved it at first and thought it was very cute, but quickly hated it because that’s where all of the tourists hung out!
What do you think an event like this can achieve?
I have no idea how I was selected but it was nice to get the letter – quite flattering I guess, the connections are important and it’s great to see what people have gone on to do. Having alumni career paths promoted is important because there’s such a crazy diversity.
Who was your biggest influence at Univ?
A few people here would probably say the same thing it’s got to be Acer Nethercott, because I do Ironman quite seriously now and have been to the world championships, but it was Acer, Tom Walker and Howard Duncan (name check ?) who did an Ironman while I was in my second year at Univ and it had always been on my bucket list. They were very good college rowers and I was a good Uni rower – I thought if they can do it, I can probably do it. So I entered one and Acer just said, ‘You’re going to nail it!’ and he looked at my time afterwards and said, ‘You have to try and go to the world championships at Kona.’ This is a guy who went to the Olympics, but was just so humble and so generous with his time.