Alumnus recognised in campaign celebrating first-generation university students


Leeds Trinity University alumnus Zee Faridi has been named in the Universities UK national '100 Faces' Campaign, which celebrates the stories and achievements of students who are the first in their family to go to university.

A male wearing a blue suit stands at the bottom of a multi-coloured staircase.

Zee, who is from Huddersfield in West Yorkshire, graduated from Leeds Trinity in 2016 with a degree in Secondary PE and Sports Development in and has gone on to be successful in his role as Business Director at the Batley-based Ezmuve Estate Agents. Within his first 12 months at the company, it took £15million in transactions and won the Most People-Focused Real Estate Agents – West Yorkshire prize at the Northern Enterprise Awards 2022.

His accomplishments have seen him recognised in the 'local heroes' category of the 100 Faces list compiled by Universities UK, who work to ensure universities in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are able to thrive by fostering collaboration, facilitating knowledge exchange and influencing policies.

As well as telling the stories of individuals on the 100 Faces list, Universities UK’s campaign helps demonstrate that Higher Education is not for a particular ‘type’ of person, and how universities are a powerful tool for social mobility and encouraging aspiration. The list features a diverse range of graduates exploring their backgrounds and how going to university has changed their lives and career paths.

In July 2023, Zee was made an Honorary Fellow at Leeds Trinity University in recognition of his business leadership prowess. Earlier this year, he tasted more success as Ezmuve Estate Agents claimed another Northern Enterprise Award, this time for Residential Real Estate Agency of the Year.

Alongside his work in real estate, Zee is also growing his other endeavours including investment company Novac Estate, Social Gap Media, a digital agency working with businesses across the country to grow their online presence, and a community focused enterprise dedicated to helping people from poverty-stricken backgrounds.

Zee Faridi said: “I am so proud to feature on the 100 Faces list. It is always nice to receive recognition for my work and overall achievements, but even more so in this case, as my story may help inspire others from a similar background to me. My goal in life is to have a positive impact in the world and on young people who may need positive role models, especially those who come from underprivileged backgrounds.

“Some of my successes are thanks to a combination of the support of my family, who encourage me to be generous and give back to the community; my time at Leeds Trinity University, where I learnt the importance of discipline and focus; and hard work. I am proof that, regardless of your background, it is possible to succeed. I truly believe that you can do anything if you believe in yourself.”

Catherine O’Connor, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Education and Experience at Leeds Trinity University, said: “I am pleased that Zee has been able to apply the skills and knowledge developed during his time at Leeds Trinity University to his work since graduating. The University is committed to providing students with an excellent education and support for their chosen field. As an organisation, we focus on helping students develop their personal and professional skillsets so they can succeed in life and work, whichever path they choose to take when they finish their studies with us. Knowing Zee considers his time at Leeds Trinity as one of the key reasons for his discipline, commitment and focus is a strong indicator that we are achieving what we set out to do.”

“I offer my congratulations to Zee on his inclusion in the 100 Faces list and hope to see those considering a university education who have been inspired by his story join us at Leeds Trinity University in the near future.”

Brett Arnall, Alumni Relations Officer at Leeds Trinity University, said: “Having stayed connected with Zee since he graduated from Leeds Trinity, it is no surprise to me that he is included on this list of inspirational graduates. Zee’s commitment to his work, ability to connect with others and desire to make a positive difference based on his own experiences are truly admirable. He thoroughly deserves any recognition that comes his way, and I am delighted to see his continued success.”

For more information on Zee’s time at Leeds Trinity University, visit his alumni profile on the University website.

The full Universities UK 100 Faces list, as well as further details about the campaign, can be found online.

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