Carnation Kang, MSc Strategic Marketing 2019-20, student at Imperial College Business School
MSc Strategic Marketing

BA Foreign Language and Literature and BA Communications, National Chung Cheng University

About you

What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?

I have worked as a marketer in the technology sector for both large organisations and startups. In these roles I promoted both hardware, such as mobile devices, and software, such as apps, crypto, and blockchain, for various international markets.

Why did you decide to study MSc Strategic Marketing at Imperial College Business School?

After working for a few years, I was looking for a pathway to career acceleration, more visibility in the job market, and a way to expand my connections. With the reputation of Imperial College London and focus on practical learning on the programme at the Business School, I believe an MSc Strategic Marketing could help tremendously towards me achieving these goals.

Furthermore, with my ambition to be an international marketing technology talent, I have previously gained experience in both Asian and US markets, which made learning in Europe feel like a natural next step in rounding out my global knowledge.


What aspects of the programme do you enjoy the most?

Firstly, I love how pragmatic and diverse the programme is. We have a large cohort of 200 people from all over the world and all walks of life. It’s been an amazing experience to learn not just from the programme material but also your friends and colleagues in class. In addition, I’ve found the Careers team offer a wide range of career fairs, one-on-one career consultations and networking opportunities to help me build connections and develop a pathway for myself based on real-world supply and demand.

Which has been your favourite module so far and why?

My personal favourites are Consumer Behaviour, Strategic Market Management, Brand Strategy and Finance and Pricing Strategy. These are the modules I find both challenging and rewarding at the same time. The modules are engaging and up-to-date, so I can easily resonate with the theory and try to apply them to real-world scenarios.

What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?

As a student with previous experience in industry, I find it easier to apply what’s being taught in my modules to reality. Learning marketing at a managerial and strategic level has helped me to develop a high-level understanding and solve problems from different angles and perspectives. This in turn has given me more certainty and confidence than I had previously, where my day-to-day learning came primarily through trial and error at work.

What has been the most challenging part of the programme? 

The most challenging part for me personally has been working in groups where there is both time pressure and cultural/personality differences. In these scenarios, group discussions can often take up the same amount of time as listening to lectures. However, I have found it to be a great opportunity to learn skills that will undoubtedly help me work alongside international co-workers in the future.


How would you describe your cohort at Imperial?

My cohort is an extremely diverse group of people, each coming from different cultures and backgrounds across the globe as well as a variety of sectors. Each individual has something outstanding or interesting to learn from, and I am constantly amazed by how talented they are.

Do you have a favourite professor/lecturer and why?

James Eteen is my favourite professor as the Strategic Market Management and Marketing Decision Making modules he teaches are very practical. The way he delivers the lectures is clear and well-structured. Dr Omar Merlo and Professor Andreas Eisingerich are two other lecturers whom I admire. They deliver their material with passion and engage us with interesting cases and theories. I enjoy going to their classes, and even completing assessments for their modules.  


What has been the greatest opportunity you have had at Imperial?

The greatest opportunity I’ve had is the chance to network and build connections with both Alumni and visiting businesses.

Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?

The guest lectures I attended covered a wide range of real-world marketing related topics, including Growth Hacking and Neuromarketing, Omnichannel Marketing, Future Thinking, Crisis Management, Artificial Intelligence, and Influencer Marketing. Attending these lectures was an incredible experience outside of core modules, which provided a great opportunity to learn more about some niche topics and develop interests in broader marketing fields.

What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial? 

I am a Student Ambassador and I joined the Imperial College Business School Technology, Media, and Telecommunications (TMT) Club.

Have you had opportunities to work/socialise with students across programmes within the Business School?

As a Student Ambassador and member of the Technology, Media and Telecoms (TMT) Careers Club, I was able to participate in several student leadership gatherings and business visits. I met and made friends with many other students from different programmes during these events.

How have you benefited from the Business School’s connection to the Imperial College London community?

I’ve connected to several of our alumni who have been kind enough to refer me to the companies they are working for.

London Location

Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?

One of the main reasons I chose Imperial was because of its location. London has a vibrant environment with a lot of opportunities and events for me to explore. Examples include the technology job fair Silicon Milkroundabout and London Trekweek hosted by the Business School where we visited companies across various industries. Moreover, London is well connected to other European countries, which makes travel extremely convenient and affordable. I took advantage of that and visited Google HQ in Dublin with our lecturer Dr Marialena Zinopoulou and alumni, as well as Uber HQ in Amsterdam with the TMT club.

Where do you live in London and why did you choose to live there?

I live in the GradPad Woodlane studio because I feel safer as they work with Imperial and the residents are all postgrads. Its location is also attractive as it sits right next to Imperial’s White City Campus. The School shuttle bus runs every hour between all other campuses, and is within 10 minutes’ walk of White City (the Central Line on the Tube). Many of my classmates live here too, so there’s always company for when you wish to socialise, alongside a good amount of privacy that comes with living in a fully equipped studio. 

When you’re not studying, what do you enjoy doing?

I like to walk around and explore the city. I love to go ‘café hunting’ and record them on my Coffeemaniac Instagram account. I travel a lot too, even before I moved to London. Living in London just made travelling easier. As a matter of fact, I’ve visited eight European countries in 6 months!

What have been the benefits and challenges of moving to London? What advice would you give to someone in a similar position?

Living in London can certainly be expensive, but the living experience is priceless. Identify your needs versus desires and prioritise what you value the most. Spend money wisely and don’t forget to utilise your student identity for discounts and some good deals!


Looking back to when you were applying for the programme, did you attend any online webinars or on-campus information sessions?

I regret that I didn’t know that there are online webinars and on-campus events, or that you can even talk to Student Ambassadors and ask questions!  I would encourage prospective students to participate as much as possible and ask when in doubt! These events are very helpful to get first-hand information from actual students and help you better prepare for your application.

What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?

First of all, you need to know yourself. Think thoroughly about why you need a Master’s. How can it help with your future? Why are you eligible? What makes you stand out? Secondly, do research about the School and the programme. List your expectations and see if they match. Studying at Imperial is a once in a lifetime experience, but it’s important that you fully understand what each programme offers and what you can achieve before making the (big) decision to apply!

MSc Strategic Marketing

BA Foreign Language and Literature and BA Communications, National Chung Cheng University