Life after University, for myself it’s an exciting time; all the coffee fuelled late nights in the library and countless essay drafts accumulating to that pinnacle moment. As I find myself 6 months into working at Purity, now seems a good time to discuss whether it is what I had imaged while studying at University.
There’s no doubt that studying for a degree is difficult, it requires commitment, discipline and some sacrifice. In many ways it can prepare you for working life, for example, managing your time effectively and working towards impending deadlines. It can also prepare you to work with different people, encourage independent thinking and challenge you to think outside the box. The modules I studied which have put me on a good path before joining Purity are the ones which focused on marketing concepts, experiential learning and strategic management. These are crucial learning points and have allowed me to gauge an understanding of the mechanics behind an experiential agency. University not only facilitates but encourages creative and strategic thinking and this is something I feel can puts Graduates at a great advantage.
Couple a relevant degree with experience and you’ve almost certainly got the attention of an employer, I studied a sandwich degree, meaning I worked in the industry for a year. I cannot stress the value of this placement year enough. It allows you to apply everything you’ve learned in 1st and 2nd year to the workplace and helps you to go further in your 3rd year as you have already gained an insight into the industry. For me, however, until I was working at an agency I never fully understood the scope of the industry and just how much there is to learn. University undoubtedly offers a great stepping stone and enables graduates to lay the foundations for the next chapter in their career, but the learning continues and the workplace offers a completely different set of challenges to University.
Tips for students looking to start their career in this industry:
Life is the work-place is more varied than I had anticipated, but that’s what makes working in this industry so enjoyable. No two days are the same and you have to be prepared to roll your sleeves up and turn your hand to anything. Being able to think on your feet and work under pressure are part and parcel of what the job demands. Having a great team around you helps and as I said, every day I am learning.
Melissa Hannan graduated in Event Management from Sheffield Hallam University. She is an Account Executive at Purity working across a number of key accounts including BMW MINI, Stan James and UNiDAYS. View Mel’s LinkedIn profile.