Have you seen the Student Ambassador’s walking around the Uni? Maybe you remember them from your Open Day? Well, we are looking for new recruits to be trained up. Whether you give Campus tours, talk to students at Sixth Form colleges, or represent the University at Fairs, it’s a really important role, representing the University in and around Ipswich. Recently, the University had it’s Student Ambassador Awards. Brandon Orton won the Outstanding Newcomer Award, and told us about his experience as a Student Ambassador.
Why did you become a Student Ambassador?
I became a Student Ambassador as it provides you with work experience and develops your skills for future employment. It’s convenient as it ties in with my University work and I don’t have to work regularly if I don’t want to. I study Events Management so the job helps with the development of my CV.
What do you like about being a Student Ambassador?
I enjoy getting involved with promoting the University and it’s fun working with other Student Ambassadors. You meet new people and make new friends.
What skills did it give you?
Since I’ve became a Student Ambassador my communication skills have rapidly improved. Giving Campus Tours has improved my confidence to speak in front of a group of people, while also having to use initiative to answer people’s questions and deal with any problems. These skills make you more employable.
What advice would you give other people thinking about becoming a Student Ambassador?
When applying as a Student Ambassador don’t feel anxious when you have to complete campus tours and work in events. Just remember that you are the person that knows about the University and the people who are asking you don’t. As long as you are always friendly and chatty, you can’t go wrong. A smile can go a long way in making someone’s experience worth while.
What’s the most interesting work you have been involved in since becoming a Student Ambassador?
I have to say working with the primary school children because they always have the most random questions, which puts you on the spot! They make you think a lot as I wouldn’t think of these things usually. I enjoy working with the young people because it’s fun, although it’s also a challenge, as you have to change your approach in giving tours. It really gives you good experience as I’ve never worked with kids before.
What’s the strangest question you’ve ever been asked on a tour?
I get “why are the buildings shaped like that?” a lot. It makes you think, and I start to wonder the same thing! A primary school child once asked me, “can you rent a boat?” to which I replied, “I’d love to rent or buy one, but my student finance doesn’t cover it!”
Have you met people that you wouldn’t have if you hadn’t become a Student Ambassador?
I’ve met so many students from loads of different courses and made friends that I usually wouldn’t have because we have such different schedules. It’s nice to get to know people with different interests to myself.
How much of an expert about the University do you have to be to become a Student Ambassador?
I don’t think you have to really be an expert, as you learn on the job. You get a bit of training at the beginning, but if you don’t know something you can always find out pretty quickly. Getting involved means you learn fast. I learnt more about the University being a Student Ambassador than before, and you really develop your skills. It’s more about the way you present yourself as the first impression always counts!