Hi there! My name is Julia Zhao, one of the Student Ambassadors of the MSc Management programme. Prior to studying at Imperial, I worked in a commercial encryption company in Beijing, China and later joined a founding team in the media sector. Before that I worked at a London based AI startup. I have an MA degree in Education and International Development from University College London and a BA degree in Law from Shandong University.
I have enjoyed my journey at Imperial College Business School, in particular being a Student Ambassador. It is fascinating to get in touch with candidates like you from diverse backgrounds worldwide, and I look forward to speaking with new prospective students every day.
In the past few months, I have advised candidates on their application and the interview process. The experience often reminds me of when I was an anxious applicant. I feel that a few things would be super beneficial for prospective students to know before they start applying.
Read the ‘Admissions’ section of the website thoroughly
The MSc Management programme's admissions section has very detailed and useful information regarding application progress every step of the way. I remember over a year ago I was reading Imperial's website carefully and that helped to answer almost all my generic questions regarding entry requirements and the process.
Doing so gave me a clear direction and plan of how I should proceed and how to organise my material and made me aware of what I might miss and where I might need help. I can't stress enough that you should go through the admissions pages before reaching out to staff and students of the programme.
Dig out insider information
When applicants come to me with questions which are already answered on the website, they will likely get very similar answers because I often refer to the website when typing in my responses. To create meaningful interactions with people in the Business School, I strongly suggest that applicants ask questions that can only be answered by 'insiders'.
For example, which modules are interesting, which clubs are fun and active and what services Careers provide. Such first-hand information assists you in demonstrating genuine interest in the School in your personal statement. Additionally, it helps you to further understand if the School fits your academic or career goals.
Set up a positive mindset
Applying for a prestigious institute like Imperial College Business School is daunting and stressful. It is crucial to have a healthy mindset so that you can benefit from the application process no matter what the final result is. When I was applying for a Master's, I found the process itself to be rewarding.
Figuring out which programme to study and how best to present myself to the Admissions team offered me a valuable opportunity to reflect on my personal and professional life, which I should have done a long time ago.
In hindsight, reaching out to Student Ambassadors also helps candidates to build meaningful relationships with the alumni early on, which is beneficial to future studying and job hunting.