Univ Dates: 2003-2008
Degree: BA PPE and MPhil Economics
Degree Level: Undergraduate and Postgraduate
Occupation: Bank of England – Deliveroo – Labour Party
Biography: British born, with Ugandan heritage. Previously a graduate economist at the Bank of England (2009-2013), followed by a few years of ‘soul searching’ in strategy consultancy, Jonan is now a UK Director at Deliveroo one of Europe’s fastest growing tech companies. Future ambitions include building a second home in Uganda, enjoying life and thinking less about the future, and helping people grow and succeed in life in Uganda and the UK. At Univ, Jonan played for Oxford University Rugby Football Club (four Blues) and ran Athletics (two Blues, 400m). He received the Bannister Medal in 2005-2006, and a Gladstone Scholarship for his PPE prelim results.
What were your preconceptions of Oxford or Univ before you started here?
Very nice buildings. Lots of expectations. My Dad and Uncle being too proud that one of their sons had got an offer to go there. My mum being so proud. Lots of scare stories about weird interviews.
What do you remember about your first day at Univ?
Being a hermit in my room eating badly toasted toast while listening to Outkast, until getting dragged out to the college bar.
Was there anyone at Univ who really inspired you?
Many people. In particular Sujoy Mukerji my Economics tutor. And Bill, our Chaplain, who was so kind. And Bob our porter who used to play football professionally. And the legends Lady and Lord Butler who created such a welcoming atmosphere for us all.
Do you have an outstanding memory from your time at Univ?
Waking up late and cycling to lectures. Waking up late and going to the pub. Waking up late and cycling to rugby training, in November one evening over Magdalen Bridge while listening to Snow Patrol (the Jekyll and Hyde track), and then getting fined £30 by the Police for leaving my bike lights ‘at home’. I have more interesting memories I’m sure. In truth, too many good ones to list, too few bad ones to remember.
How do you think Univ shaped you?
It’s such a welcoming space for people to grow. Such a lovely collection of friends, and of people who cared about the College and our futures. One of the most important times in my life to build confidence, to feel part of a team, and to share experiences with people that I will stay friends with for life.
Did you know what you wanted to do after Univ?
No, and not worked it out ten years on. I knew I liked economics, talking with new people, helping new people feel welcome, and boring my friends talking politics – and I still do.
How important is a project like this?
Not exactly sure, but this project feels like such a good idea. I hope current students find it helpful and that it becomes a regular thing: so that our portraits are taken down and replaced with new alumni as they come through. (But leave them up for a bit please!)
How did it feel to be selected to take part?
The closer the project gets to completion, the more honouring it feels. It’s only just sinking in that you are going to put our portraits up. My family will be so proud. This project will spur me on, as I hope it does others.