Alzheimer's researcher and PhD student Amit Mehta died in his sleep in December 2005 but his memory will live on at the University. On the first anniversary of his death (December 14), his parents have founded an award to recognise the achievements of other disabled students at Leeds.
The Amit Mehta prize will 'recognise students who have shown determination, resilience and humour in overcoming adversity and disability'. Staff will be asked to nominate any student at Leeds who suffers from a physical or cognitive disability.
Peterborough-born Amit came to Leeds in 1998 to study for a BSc in pharmacology. He was partially deaf and visually impaired and had anaemia and diabetes but he chose the University for its support services. Despite these challenges, he completed his undergraduate degree and graduated with a good 2i. With encouragement and support from supervisor Dr Hugh Pearson, Amit began a PhD in Alzheimer's research.
Jayshree and Mukund Mehta, Amit's parents are devastated at such an untimely death of their son. They said: '"After the initial set back, when Amit was developing his health problems and once he realised that even able bodied have their shortcomings, he accepted his disabilities as part of himself. He soon realised that nothing can stop him from doing and achieving what he wanted.
"Amit had a wonderful sense of humour which helped him overcome the challenges he faced and quite simply get on with the life."
Dr Pearson said: "He really was larger than life. For someone who had to do intricate, technically demanding practical work in the face of such physical disadvantage, he really achieved a lot. He was always cheerful and had a mischievous sense of humour. He really enjoyed his studies.
"For his PhD Amit was looking at new Alzheimer's treatments and the possibility they might have serious side effects. He worked away at something until he got it right and would not be happy with an experiment or answer to one of his questions which was not exactly right. Exactly the quality you want in a scientist."
Graham Askew, Simon Walker, BBSRC (Jan 2018), £699,781
Jennifer Tomlinson, Royal Society (Jan 2018), £512,801
Carrie Ferguson, Bryan Taylor, Harry Rossiter, The Physiological Society (Dec 2017), £7,392
Ralf Richter, Royal Society (Dec 2017), £6,000
Christine Foyer, British Council Newton Fund (Dec 2017), £49,840
Adrian Whitehouse and colleagues in School of Chemistry and University of Liverpool, MRC (Nov 2017), £622,319
Michelle Peckham, Neil Ransom, MRC (Nov 2017), £495,159
Dave Lewis, British Council India (Nov 2017), £22,540
Hannah Dugdale, Royal Society (Nov 2017), £15,000
Elton Zeqiraj, Royal Society (Nov 2017), £15,000
Shaunna Burke, Cancer Research UK Innovation Grant (Nov 2017), £20,000
Alex O'Neill and colleagues in Chemistry, BBSRC (Nov 2017), £431,865
Jessica Kwok, Wings for Life (Nov 2017), £87,365
Tom Bennett, BBSRC (Oct 2017), £523,679
Neil Ranson, Darren Tomlinson, BBSRC (Oct 2017), £494,318
Nikita Gamper, BBSRC (Oct 2017), £490,426
Amanda Bretman and colleagues from UEA, NERC (Oct 2017), £430,886
Juan Fontana, Rosetrees Trust consumables grant (Oct 2017), £22,500
Helen Miller, DSM Nutritional Products AG (Sep 2017), £69,988
Neil Ranson, Juan Fontana, Mark Harris, Michelle Peckham, Ralf Richter, Peter Stockley, Patricija Van Oosten-Hawle and colleagues in Engineering, FMH and MAPS, Wellcome Trust Equipment Call (Sep 2017), £418,000
Jamie Johnston, Physiological Society (Sep 2017), £10,000
Frank Sobott, Adrian Goldman, Mark Harris, Andrew Macdonald, Stephen Muench, Sheena Radford and colleagues in FMH and MAPS, Wellcome Trust Equipment Call (Aug 2017), £415,000
Ralf Richter, David Brockwell, Eric Hewitt, Jessica Kwok, Emanuele Paci and MAPS/FMH, BBSRC (Jun 2017), £600,000
Eric Blair, Adrian Whitehouse, Nicola Stonehouse, Alison Baker, Richard Bayliss, Joan Boyes, Ryan Seipke, Sally Boxall and MAPS/FMH, BBSRC (Jun 2017), £376,000
Stefan Kepinski, Yoselin Benitez-Alfonso, Tom Bennett, Michelle Peckham, BBSRC (Jun 2017), £331,000
Roman Tuma, Lars Jeuken, Paul Millner, Sheena Radford, Peter Stockley and MAPS/FMH, BBSRC (Jun 2017), £222,000
Vas Ponnambalam, Darren Tomlinson, Stephen Wheatcroft, BHF (May 2017), £107,878
Graham Askew in collaboration with Bangor University, BBSRC (Mar 2017), £477,383
Stephen Muench, BBSRC (Mar 2017), £132,945
Nic Stonehouse, MRC (Mar 2017), £906,341
Bill Kunin, Steve Sait, BBSRC (Mar 2017), £602,831
Adrian Goldman, EU (Mar 2017), £546,576
Sheena Radford, Wellcome Trust (Mar 2017), £1,836,482
Beatrice Filippi, Royal Society (Mar 2017), £15,000
Jamie Johnston, Royal Society (Mar 2017), £15,000
Tom Bennett, Royal Society (Mar 2017), £15,000
Ryan Seipke, BBSRC (Feb 2017), £52,116
Mary O'Connell, BBSRC (Feb 2017), £46,986
Hannah Dugdale, NERC (Feb 2017), £504,138
Anastasia Zhuravleva, EPSRC (Jan 2017), £100,792
Richard Bayliss, Cancer Research UK (Jan 2017), £1,600,000
John Barr, EU (Jan 2017), £339,000
Mark Harris, Royal Society (Jan 2017), £250,000
Alison Dunn, NERC (Jan 2017), £105,000
Alex Breeze, Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund (Jan 2017), £180,000
Alison Dunn, NERC (Dec 2016), £18,000