What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?
After finishing my Bachelor’s, I joined Grow Group, one of Hungary’s biggest organisation development companies as a marketing intern, where I climbed through the ranks and became Marketing Manager after just six months of my initial arrival. At the same time, I held a junior consultant position for Krauthammer, a strategic partner of Grow Group. I spent little over two years there, before enrolling into the Master’s.
Why did you decide to study MSc Strategic Marketing at Imperial College Business School?
It was a combination of multiple factors: location, ranking, reputation, being international, employability, and programme affordability. Imperial stood out, and was my clear number one choice.
What aspects of the programme do you most enjoy, and find most rewarding?
For me it was all the extracurricular activities that you can choose to take part in. Even in September before our official start I had the chance to attend two to three company presentations/recruitment events per week. Later I joined the TMT (Technlogy, Media and Telecommunications) and Consulting clubs, offering an additional wide range of talks, guest lectures and panel discussions. On top of all of this, I utilised the Careers services to the fullest, attending mock assessment centres, group and one-on-one interviews. Make sure you get the most out of your time here, there is always something to attend!
Which has been your favourite module so far and why?
The Marketing Plan Competition during the summer term was my absolute favourite. Put six bright minds together and let them come up with an innovative product or service. We were learning something new every day, while enjoying the entire process. The brainstorming sessions, the coaching, the presentation – everything.
What has been the most challenging part of the programme?
Coming from a different university culture, the exam weeks presented a real challenge. I was used to a structure where I had three to five days in between exams, hence I could utilise my short term memory and focused concentration. Here you have three to four weeks to prepare for four exams taking place during the span of only five days. It requires a different skill set which I was forced to pick up along the way.
How do you describe your cohort at imperial?
Super diverse. We had 40+ different nationalities, so basically wherever I wish to travel, I have a local guide and a place to sleep! I can happily report that there are at least 20 people I consider good friends of mine, and at the same time they are all exceptionally talented and bright individuals.
Imperial places a large emphasis on group work; what did you like the most about working in this type of environment?
Regardless of who you get teamed up with, it is a challenge. Especially because we are all coming from vastly different backgrounds, with different ideas and coping mechanisms. It’s going to get difficult at times, but there is always a lesson to learn. Use these occasions and get better every day.
What has been the greatest opportunity you have had at Imperial?
There is no “one” event, it’s the constant opportunity to get “on stage” and present. Public speaking should be a subject taught in high school, not something you discover when you are out in the workplace. Imperial will definitely give you every chance to improve this neglected, yet crucial skill.
Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?
If you are interested in what is happening out in the world of business, then definitely consider joining the TMT, FMCG, Retail & Luxury, and Consulting clubs. They are the guys bringing in industry professionals, entrepreneurs, and all kinds of interesting people. Career fairs and company introductions are also useful, but do your research, don’t just attend.
What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial? Do you hold a student leadership position?
I was drafted to Imperial’s number one Volleyball team, which provided me with another layer of being part of the community. On top of that, I took an active part in the award-winning student initiative WhatTheTech. Once a week we did “pro-bono consulting”, meaning that we visited elderly homes and taught residents basic digital skills. Giving back to the community and helping families connect with each other through the power of technology is something everyone should experience.
How have you benefited from being part of the wider Imperial College London community?
A great example would be all the alumni connections that you have at your disposal. If I remember correctly, I received five or six recommendations when applying to certain companies. Just reach out to the alumni working there, and have a chat with them. They will happily provide you with the edge you desperately need in the insanely competitive London job market.
What are your future career goals and how have they been realised since being at Imperial?
I aim to be a global professional in the tech industry, and Imperial was probably the best choice I could have made. It gave me perspective, an extensive network, and skills that I apply on a daily basis in both my professional and personal life.
Have you received any job offers since commencing your programme?
I signed my contract with Vodafone UK in early March, where I will be a Technology Graduate. It is a two-year programme, made up from three placements, two half year projects then a one-year placement at the end. My job will most likely vary at every stage, but project management is at the core of the programme.
How did the services from Careers help in your professional development/securing employment?
As I mentioned before, mock interviews, assessment centres, and one-on-one consultations were all incredibly useful. Careers made preparations and rehearsals a fun and enjoyable process, plus at the end of the day I was confident going into the dark side of London’s job market.
Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?
I specifically wanted a London-based establishment as London is the “business hearth” of Europe. It allowed me to attend talks, networking events, and interviews without having to travel hours upon hours just to get to the hub.
Where do you live in London and why did you choose to live there?
I live right next to Paddington station which is one of the best locations you can have. Cycling to university takes eight minutes through Hyde Park, I have access to three major tube lines, and a plethora of buses. Sharing is the way to go, I would never be able to afford the neighbourhood without teaming-up!
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time in London?
My personal favourites are the parks, with Hyde Park being technically my backyard. The other activity you shouldn’t miss are the markets, where you can find literally anything you desire. Travelling is also a must, as the British countryside is breath-taking. Castles, shores, lovely villages, all at arm’s reach.
What have been the benefits and challenges of moving to London? What advice would you give to someone in a similar position?
Finding the right accommodation is not easy, as the London house market is crazy fast moving. Bidding above asking price is basically best practice when it comes to agencies, as demand outweighs supply heavily. Try Spareroom.co.uk, where you have the chance to deal directly with the landlords, and get “package deals” as usually bills and any fees are included in the asking/month price. Try to find a place with a dryer, otherwise you will have a hard time after you have done your laundry.
Looking back to when you were applying for the programme, did you attend any online webinars or on-campus information sessions?
I did not attend any of them, however I checked out all three London-based universities I received an offer from. I was almost certain that Imperial would be my final choice, and the campus just made me even more certain, that picking Imperial is a no-brainer.
What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?
It is going to be an unforgettable journey, however it’s not smooth sailing. Prepare yourself mentally for the hardships and don’t let the inconveniences bother you too much. Start your room search as soon as possible, team-up with others if you can. Renting a three to four bedroom place will yield much better value than a studio or one bed. Make sure it’s not further then 30 minutes from the university as you will spend a lot of time there. Be resilient, pay attention to what you eat (cook!), and discover London. This school offers so much, just take it!