My placement experience
"I think Surrey has something for everyone, there’s an ever-growing number of societies and sport clubs. There’s a lot of places to go to in town with friends, not just the night life but shopping and even ice skating at Guildford Spectrum."
Course, BA (Hons)English Literature
Placement companyVisitBritain and VisitEngland
"I chose to come to the University of Surrey because I really liked what the University offered in terms of modules for my course and they were the only university to offer a Professional Training placement for English literature students. There was also an emphasis on how many graduates from Surrey are successful in gaining jobs after they graduate, which was very appealing.
I attended an open day and that’s how I decided to make the University of Surrey my first choice. All the student helpers were really enthusiastic about the University and the presentation for my course was really thorough and interesting.
In addition, I fell in love with the campus because of how green it was and I liked how everything was close together. I would recommend attending an Open Day and an Applicant Day as you get to see a lot of the University to help you make your decision. The Applicant Days are more specialised to your course and are the best way of finding out what studying at Surrey would be like.
I always knew I wanted to study English Literature as I’ve always had a passion for reading and writing. I also like how there are many job opportunities which can come from having an English Literature degree, as many transferrable skills are learned and developed throughout the degree. I love the range of modules which are offered and the unique texts we have the opportunity to study. We study a variety of texts, some of which aren’t offered on any other university programme. There are classes which will interest everyone with this English Literature programme.
I think Surrey has something for everyone, there’s an ever-growing number of societies and sport clubs. There’s a lot of places to go to in town with friends, not just the night life but shopping and even ice skating at Guildford Spectrum. Also, London is only a short train ride away if you want to do something different. I lived in university accommodation in my first year, I was in a Band D room in International House and loved it. I really felt part of the university community and loved how everything was so close by. I love the campus and being able to just study or sit by the lake. The Students' Union offers a variety of events including trips to interesting cities in the UK and Europe.
The academic staff are really enthusiastic and supportive. It’s clear they enjoy what they do and want the best for their students. They’re very approachable and are always happy to talk with you and discuss your ideas. We have a great student common room where some subject events are held, and it’s a great place to study too.
I did a Professional Training placement as a Communications Assistant at VisitBritain and VisitEngland. I had a range of jobs and responsibilities on my placement. I would write articles for the intranet and newsletter; manage the team’s finances; create and maintain pages on the corporate website; assist with corporate events; and respond to enquiries and complaints.
"A highlight for me was being asked to lead on a microsite project. I had to create 40 pages for a corporate microsite for the most popular content on VisitEngland’s corporate website."
Another highlight was being asked to compile monthly reports on the enquiries and complaints we received for the senior management team, although I had never seen or created one before, I managed to create something which senior management were impressed with and started to use for their own teams. I was also lucky enough to go to different cities, such as Bath and Manchester, for our team away days and experience the different products Britain has to offer tourists.
I would definitely recommend doing a Professional Training placement during your time at Surrey. You get a valuable experience and learn a lot during the placement, and you gain and develop a variety of skills which will be vital to you in your final year and once you graduate. The placement will also be able to help you understand what career you want to have once you’ve graduated.
I think I have changed since I started at Surrey. I’m much more confident and independent now than when I started my degree."