BSc Business Administration at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?
I worked for a year and a half at a consulting and investment startup focused on supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses in townships in South Africa. I did this alongside my undergraduate studies and worked with other students from my university.
Why did you decide to study an MSc International Management at Imperial College Business School?
Having studied in the US, I thought Imperial’s MSc International Management programme would be the perfect stepping stone to enter the London consulting world. The Imperial name speaks for itself, and the breadth of the programme combined with the international opportunities really attracted me to the MSc International Management programme in particular.
Did you receive a scholarship?
I received an Imperial Excellence Scholarship. The benefits were reduced tuition, scholarship award events and the opportunity to connect with other scholarship awardees. My advice to those applying for a scholarship would be not to underestimate yourself, assess your ability in different areas and apply for the award that you think is most applicable to you.
Which has been your favourite module so far and why?
Competitive and Corporate Strategy because I am going to work in consulting and therefore the content of the module was relevant for my future profession. I also thought the module was delivered in a very engaging and appropriate style by Dr Christiane Bode.
What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?
Receiving my recent job offer. I decided to join Imperial because I thought the university and programme would be the platform that I needed to secure a job in London in consulting. Therefore, receiving the offer justified my decision.
What has been the most challenging part of the programme?
Balancing recruitment and the module content. It can get very tough when you are applying for jobs, networking and interviewing, while at the same time having to work on group projects and individual assignments. Organisation and time management are crucial!
It can be very challenging but you have the support of your classmates because everyone else is in the same boat. Knowing that everyone else was going through the same thing and helping each other out made the job application experience a lot more manageable.
How has the Leadership in Action module been beneficial to you?
It has made me more analytical about leadership and provided me with guidance and frameworks that I will take forward with me into the workplace.
How would you describe your cohort at Imperial?
Very diverse, sociable, hard-working and friendly. Due to the size of the cohort, I was able to get to know most people relatively quickly. This has definitely enhanced my experience and would say that it’s a big plus of the programme.
Did you have a favourite professor/lecturer and why?
Dr Christiane Bode. I felt like she really respected us as students. She engaged with us very well and created a very conversational atmosphere. Due to her teaching approach, students were very engaged and therefore participation was high.
Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?
There have been several, very useful case interview workshops that have helped students prepare for recruiting in the consulting industry.
What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial?
I am a member of the Consulting Club, a Student Ambassador and also a buddy for two foreign exchange students that will be coming to Imperial in the Spring Term. There are so many different extra-curricular activities you can get involved in. I would honestly say there is something for everyone!
Have you had opportunities to work/socialise with students across programmes within the Business School?
The most time I have spent with students studying other programmes is at company networking events. I haven’t worked too closely with other students yet, but will do in the Spring Term when I take electives. I’m looking forward to meeting students outside my cohort and learning from the way they approach the coursework.
What are your future career goals?
I plan on working in consulting for the foreseeable future. I want to be able to sample many different business functions and industries. As I’m a big sports fan, I can see myself working in the business side of sport in the longer term.
Have you received any job offers since commencing your programme?
I have not signed the contract yet but have verbally accepted an offer from a large client services firm. I am working in their transformation services consulting department. I will be helping clients digitally transform areas of their business. A lot of the work will involve AI, automation and robotics.
How did the services from Careers help you secure employment/in your professional development?
Careers is a huge help and has been one of the most positive aspects of my time at Imperial so far. I met with a careers consultant during the summer and I have been working with them ever since. They helped me in the initial stages of applying for jobs by screening my CV and cover letter and suggesting edits where appropriate. They also helped me identify firms that aligned with what I wanted to do and after applying, supported me all the way throughout the interview process and after I received my offers.
Job applications are very tough, especially when doing it alongside coursework. Therefore, the support from the Careers team is vital and I think it can be the difference between securing offers and not.
Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?
Yes, being in London means you are physically very close to many of the biggest companies in the world. This presents opportunities to attend information sessions, networking events and coffee chats. Unfortunately, these opportunities have been limited due to COVID-19 but I have been able to attend one in-person event. I went to the BCG office for a case interview workshop. It was a great evening as it offered me the chance to meet BCG associates, speak to Imperial students on other programmes and see the very impressive office.
When you’re not studying, what do you enjoy doing?
I’m a huge sports fan, in particular, football and horse racing. I try to go to as many matches as possible. A friend of mine a big Chelsea fan so I have been to a few games with him. Imperial is in South Kensington, so it’s very easy to get to Stamford Bridge from campus.
I also just enjoy meeting up with friends and socialising. I have many friends from school who live in London, so I get to see them often, as well as friends from the cohort.
If you had to move to London for the programme, where did you decide to live?
I moved to Clapham because many of my friends from school in London live in the area or very close.
The best advice I can give is look at multiple areas in London and not just in the immediate vicinity around campus in South Kensington. This may save you some money on rent and London public transport is very good. Therefore, you can live a bit further away from campus but still get there very easily. Before committing to a lease, I would definitely work out your journey to campus beforehand and make sure it’s doable and not too difficult.
Looking back to when you were applying for the programme, did you attend any online webinars or on-campus information sessions?
I attended at least one online webinar. I would certainly suggest prospective students attend these sorts of events because they are ideal opportunities to learn about the university and the programme. When I received the offer from Imperial, I was quick to accept it as I knew enough about the Master’s to be confident that it was the most suitable programme for me. I was in this position because of the research I had done, which included the online webinar.
If prospective students are able to, I would highly recommend an on-campus information session because one big benefit of going to Imperial is spending your days in a lovely area of London. Therefore, if a potential student is able to visit on campus, they will get the chance to sample the buzz and sophistication of South Kensington.
What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?
My number one piece of advice would be to speak to past and current students. Students who are taking the programme or who have graduated can give candidates all the information they need. They can provide knowledge that helps candidates decide whether or not they should apply and if they do, they can share the tips for the application as well as the job-hunting process and the programme itself.