There’s no place like home: Meet Business Management Student, Olivia

Heriot-Watt’s global reputation means we attract Master’s students from all over the world. This is something we’re really proud of as it provides a multi-cultural student population and lots of different perspectives in the classroom.

Still, it’s always reassuring to know that our reputation is just as strong, if not stronger, with those who live right on our doorstep in Edinburgh, our wonderful city of origin. This means we always have plenty of locals to share their insider knowledge of the city and give our truly global university a truly local feel.

Olivia studied Classics in Liverpool before returning home to complete her Master’s at our Edinburgh campus with the aim of gaining a degree that would help her launch a career.

With classes and exams finished, and her Dissertation project coming together for the summer months, we sat down with Olivia to reflect on her experience of coming back to study in Edinburgh for her Master’s degree.

Hi Olivia, can you tell us what drove your decision to study an MSc in your subject area?

By the end of my undergraduate degree I was feeling quite disenfranchised. While I loved the subject and thought it fascinating, I was struggling to get any of the graduate jobs that I wanted with my arts degree. I realised that if I wanted to open more career doors I would need to add something more practical to my CV – that’s where the idea to study International Business Management with Marketing was born!

What was it about our International Business Management degree that made you want to study here?

Being born and bred in Edinburgh, many of my high school friends had attended Heriot-Watt and loved their experience! Not only that, but the university’s impressive rankings in the league tables for many of its subjects (including business) was without a doubt very appealing. The campus itself is beautiful yet close enough to the city to give you the best of both worlds. Lastly, and probably in my case most importantly, the university’s competitive fees were a huge factor for me.

Can you tell us about a course that you’ve particularly enjoyed?

While I’ve found all my courses really interesting, the one that has stood out for me the most is my Project Management this semester. It’s been my first experience with this subject but I’m seriously considering pursuing this as a career. The teaching has been great, taught by professionals with close ties to industry and has offered me some of the most supportive teaching that I’ve ever had.

In fact most of my courses have been taught by professors who have spent many years of their career in the industry they teach, giving a more accurate idea of what I should expect when I leave uni and go into work.

How would you describe your experience of studying a Postgraduate degree in Edinburgh?

Now that I’m halfway through my postgrad, I think one of the most important aspects of university a student should take into account before applying is the administration of the institution. Compared to my undergrad and those of my friends, I can honestly say that Heriot-Watt has exceeded my expectations with its great facilities, expert teaching and efficient organisation. I’ve felt fully supported throughout my time here with all members of staff, both in and out of my discipline, taking the time to help me when I’ve asked. For a great university experience, I would recommend Heriot-Watt to anyone!

How would you describe Heriot-Watt’s student community?

One of the reasons I’ve loved my time at Heriot-Watt so much has been the opportunity to meet so many different cultures. I’ve met people from all over the globe and I really believe it’s made for a more enriching university experience. Moreover, it’s been invaluable when studying International Business! While being thoroughly international, the student community is really tight knit. It can be a daunting experience moving to a new country but you’re guaranteed to feel welcome here.

As a local, why should someone looking into a Master’s degree choose Edinburgh?

Well as a native I’m incredibly biased but I think Edinburgh is one of the most beautiful cities in the UK. With some of the biggest arts festivals in the world hosted here annually, countless bars, gorgeous architecture, great nightlife and equally exciting cities like Glasgow only a stones throw away, Edinburgh is the perfect student city.

What is your ambition for after you graduate – do you think your MSc will help you achieve it?

My hope is that I can use the skills I’ve learned in my business degree to pursue a career in marketing for an ethical company or organisation whose work makes a difference. Without a doubt, I’m already confident that the skills I’ve gained and experiences I’ve had during my Master’s year will make all the difference to my opportunities once I graduate – it’s the best decision I’ve made for my career so far!

To find out more about our MSc degree International Business Management with Marketing, follow the link below.

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