I vividly remember on the first day of Induction Week when our Programme Director, Dr Omar Merlo, welcomed us and advised us to make each moment count, because the year would go by very, very fast. Guess what? It has!

MSc Strategic Marketing 2018-19 students during Induction Week

We have just completed all modules for the Autumn Term and are now preparing for exams. This term was a whirlwind with some highlights being discovering London, completing group work and participating in extra-curricular activities. I’m pleased to have had such a balanced and fulfilling first term.

Having studied at a small liberal arts college in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in the US, I was really looking to live in a bustling city for my postgraduate studies, and London has certainly delivered! As an international student, I’ve been delighted not only by the ethnic diversity of my class (40 different nationalities) but in our diversity of academic backgrounds as well.

Imperial College London - Strategic Marketing

My highlights of Induction Week

I studied Business and Cultural Anthropology as an undergraduate, which is somewhat conventional for my programme, however some of my peers studied different disciplines such as Literature, Finance, Advertising, and even Art History. Additionally, some have worked in investment banks, advertising agencies, or have run their own business. This diversity of thought and experience definitely make in-class discussions more colourful and insightful.

The programme content has also been stimulating. We are learning not only how to be future leaders in Marketing, but in business as a whole. Most of us, don’t want to stop at “Chief Marketing Officer” or “Marketing Director”, we aspire to eventually be Chief Executive Officers and Presidents, and the modules are certainly preparing us for that.

Not only did we master data analysis in our Marketing Analytics module, the Strategic Marketing Management module pushed us to think about overall business strategies such as new market entry and product development. Our assignment briefs were intensive and encompassed primary research, video production, final report writing, pitches, and group presentations. It certainly was all very challenging, however it was very hands-on and practical and I believe pressure makes diamonds.

I have to say I’ve been highly impressed by the calibre of lectures. Not only are they lively, passionate, and supportive, they’re the absolute cream of the crop in their respective fields in academia or business.

For instance, Dr Mirjam Tuk who teaches Consumer Behavior has received an Ig Nobel Prize for her research and has been quoted in TV sitcom The Big Bang Theory. James Eteen, who taught Strategic Market Management, was a partner at Ernst & Young and now runs his own consultancy.

We’ve also had guest lectures from internationally renowned professionals such as Mark Radda, who was heavily involved in the branding of the London 2012 Olympics, and Rob Britton, who was part of the team that rebuilt American Airlines after 9/11. The learning experience is definitely richer when you’re learning from professionals who have truly earned their stripes.

In addition to the academic environment, I’ve been pleased by the range of extra-curricular opportunities available. They include Business School Career Club memberships, business-related talks hosted by the Enterprise Lab, career fairs organised by the Careers Team, and of course programme events organised by my programme’s two Social Leaders.

Myself and the Africa Business Club Executive Committee 2018/19 during the Business School Career Clubs Fair

My time so far at Imperial has thoroughly exceeded my expectations, and I will surely look back on it with fond memories such as:

  • Participating in a campus-wide scavenger hunt during Induction Week; knowing where all the buildings are has certainly come in handy
  • Dancing the night away at the Student Welcome Reception in the Natural History Museum
  • Celebrating with my peers on our class WhatsApp group after finding out our program is ranked Top 3 in the world
  • Holding an Africa Business Club event Mayur Patel, a successful African CEO
  • Experiencing one of the world’s first holographic lectures on campus 

Once exams are over, I’m going to take the time to relax and rejuvenate. I’m also already looking forward to next semester. It will certainly be colder and busier, but there’s absolutely no place I’d rather be!