Work experience is key for Soraya
As 2018 draws to a close, we look back to when alumni Soraya Tejedera spoke to students about the importance volunteering and gaining as much experience in the industry while studying.
Name: Soraya Tejedera
Course: Graduated with a Foundation Degree in Events Management before studying a BA Hons in Tourism Management at Manchester Metropolitan University.
Work experience: Working part time at the National Football Museum, Events Sales Coordinator role in the same museum, volunteer Events Assistant at Chetham’s School of Music.
Career goal: A job combining her two passions, theatre and events.
How important is networking and working in the industry while studying?
Very important! Meeting people within your chosen industry can open many doors for your career.
What are employers looking for?
Definitely work experience in the industry. That is why volunteering is so important. Being motivated and having initiative helps, but knowing what you are doing, what is expected of you and what skills you can bring to the organisation is key and comes from previous experience.
What additional skills do you need in addition to those learned on your course?
I learned the basics skills that I would need on my course, but drastically improved my organisation, problem solving, leadership, creativity and motivation.
Tell us about your favourite event – why was it successful and were there any challenges you had to overcome?
My favourite event was actually the one that I developed as a project on my Foundation Degree. It was called “Diehard Football Fans” at the National Football Museum. Over 400 people showed up and had a great time taking part in a range of activities including soccer skills sessions, a social media based photography contest, and face painting.
The biggest challenge I faced was that on the morning of the event, our football freestyler cancelled so we had to act fast. We used problem solving skills and found a football freestyler just hours before the start of the event that would perform at the museum…and all for free!
What advice would you give to current students looking to follow a similar path?
Choose the right company to base your research project on, make a good impression and build a relationship with them because you never know what opportunities may arise afterwards. Also, volunteer somewhere to gain the vital experience needed to start your career. It does not have to be with a big company. I actually found it easier to learn from smaller places, because they rely more on you so you learn the key responsibilities for your future work role.
Picture shows Soraya Tejedera (right) speaking to students about work experience.
Find your future at UCEN Manchester and start your studies this January.