Alistair Taylor - Project Coordinator (HR)

Alistair is currently on the NTU Graduate Development Programme: he is taking every opportunity thrown at him and is hoping that his time on the programme will lay the foundation for his future career.

The best way to develop is by pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, and this programme and job definitely give me the chance to do that.

My main reason for coming to NTU was because I just love the city of Nottingham. Sure, it was good for what I studied – which was Psychology – but it was mainly the city that made me want to come here. When it came to third year and looking for jobs, I really didn’t know what I wanted to do. I knew that I didn’t want to do a Masters, and I didn’t want a job in psychology either. Fortunately, the Graduate Development Programme came at the perfect time for me.

I found out about it through a friend of mine, at a time where I was feeling a bit disheartened by having to juggle all my deadlines, exam revisions and job applications. I immediately applied, and months later I was hired for the role of project coordinator in HR. I’ll always be thankful to my friend for telling me about this job!

The programme puts on monthly workshops for us that aim to coach us in various skills which can be directly applied to our work here. The most valuable thing I’ve learned in these workshops is how to handle conflict. I’ve always seen conflict in such a negative light, but I now realise that conflict – when handled well – can be healthy and beneficial to all parties involved. Whereas before I would simply have backed myself and argued my point until the cows came home, now I am happy to try and understand where the other person is coming from and see if we can come to a mutual agreement. It’s been so helpful and has meant that doing my job is so much easier as I can take a step back and understand different points of views before coming to a decision.

My time working here has made me so much more confident in putting myself “out there” into new situations. I’ve begun to realise that the best way to develop is by pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, and this programme and job definitely give me the chance to do that.

I would recommend the programme to anyone from NTU, whether you know what career you want to go onto or not. The programme gives you such a high level of development that no other job I know would give you, and it really helps you on the first step toward your future career. Also, it’s an opportunity to stay in Nottingham; if you studied here and loved your time in this city like I did, what’s stopping you from applying to the programme?

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