"The option to do a placement year was a huge draw for me as I felt it would be incredibly beneficial for kickstarting my career. I quickly got the impression that Surrey was a great place to gain experience and get the support you need to enter the world of work."
What attracted you to choose the University of Surrey and to study your course here?
The option to do a placement year was a huge draw for me as I felt it would be incredibly beneficial for kickstarting my career. I quickly got the impression that Surrey was a great place to gain experience and get the support you need to enter the world of work.
What is your strongest memory of your time at Surrey – what do you picture first when you think of being here?
Probably working on The Stag newspaper. I was features editor during my second year and I absolutely loved coming up with ideas, editing pieces and listening to music with my fellow editors as we put the paper together.
What were the best things about your course?
Although I did English Literature, having the option to choose creative writing and film modules gave me the chance to do something a bit different. We were also exposed to a wide variety of genres which I loved. I remember the detective fiction module being a particular favourite of mine!
What do you do now and what do you find most enjoyable about your work?
I’m now Marketing Manager at an advertising agency. It’s a job that involves lots of projects, lots of deadlines and lots of spinning plates! But that’s what I like most about it. It requires a variety of skills, so no two days are ever the same.
A highlight in my career so far would be helping create and launch a global research study with HeForShe, the UN’s solidarity movement for gender equality.
How did your time at Surrey help you choose what career to go into?
"My placement year gave me a taste of working life which was incredibly beneficial. Throughout my time at Surrey, I learnt what I enjoyed and that has played a huge role in building my career."
My course taught me that I like working on a variety of tasks, The Stag taught me that I enjoy writing and coming up with creative ideas and being a student mentor taught me that I find fulfilment in supporting others.
How does what you learnt in your degree help you in your current role?
Whilst, unfortunately, I’m not trying to guess ‘who dunnit’ in my normal day to day work, there are a lot of skills I learnt during my course that are hugely helpful in my role. Firstly, the critical thinking and analytical skills are vital in making decisions and developing a marketing plan. Secondly, proofreading, writing, and editing are essential for effective communication.
What is your advice for students aspiring to work in your profession?
There’s no one defined route into marketing, most of us end up here via very squiggly paths so be prepared for a journey. Seize every opportunity, start making a note of campaigns you like/dislike and why, and get stuck in. Most importantly, never forget that if you don’t get a ‘top job’ straight out of uni, that doesn’t mean you won’t ever get there. In my first year of graduating, I went through three jobs before landing my first full time marketing role.
Finally, do you have any other comments you’d like to offer about your time at Surrey or life after university?
"University is just the start, you’ve got plenty of time to try different things and build a career you love."