After studying A-levels at Suffolk New College, university felt like a natural progression for me. I knew it would be the best route to achieving the qualifications and confidence I needed to pursue a full-time career.
Many of my college friends were surprised that I had only applied to study at UCS – their idea of university life was as far away from home as possible! For me, living with my family in Ipswich and holding on to my Saturday job made financial sense, and the university’s small but friendly appeal was a lot less daunting than the prospect of moving to a big city.
I chose to study BA (Hons) Event Management because, compared to other subjects, it included projects with local employers and modules that would prepare me for a variety of jobs, such as marketing, accounting and business law. The world of Event Management seemed to buzz with excitement and, most importantly to me, good job prospects.
The practical modules in the Event Management course were vital in preparing me for work. The skills and experiences I gained, as well as contacts with local employers, are what ultimately secured the job I am in today at Genesis PR.
By the time I left university, I had worked voluntarily with six local employers, completed two six-week internships and been on the organising team for two large events. I had also worked on course projects with the local council and had met with countless contacts from the events and tourism industry. Work experience opportunities and internships were all found with the help and guidance from the lecturers and the careers team, meaning that I left with a whole lot more on my CV than just a degree.
The highlight of my time at university was in first year when I organised my first event, the Viva Espaňa exhibition. After enjoying a group trip to Seville as part of a Spanish module (my first flight abroad!), a group of us organised a Spanish exhibition with sangria and tapas in the foyer. I wrote my first press release and organised a press photographer to visit, I was so pleased to see it published in the local paper. It was that PR buzz that recurred in my final year when I was thinking about which career direction to take.
UCS has been invaluable in helping me to develop personally and professionally. The nurturing and supportive environment helped me to develop greater confidence, self-belief and an appetite for doing my very best. The degree itself taught me transferrable skills such group work, timekeeping, personal organisation and working to deadlines – all things that I apply at work now.
I would say to anyone considering studying at UCS to ‘go for it’! I have no regrets about attending UCS and was enjoying a full-time career a week after finishing my course. If you want a practical, hands-on degree with real employability prospects, Event Management is the one.
Find out more about BA (Hons) Event and Tourism Management