Gayathri Senanayake

Gayathri

Senanayake

Sri Lanka

More about Gayathri

When picking a Business School to study a Masters what do you consider it important to have?
For me, a postgraduate qualification is all about a practical based learning environment. In addition, it was important to have a work placement combined with the MSc degree as well as other recognised accreditations.

Why did you choose Nottingham Business School?
I met with the country representative of Nottingham Trent University (NTU) in Sri Lanka and had a chat about the course. I also researched the course online and I got to know about the placement, international scholarships and rankings of NTU. After a while, I made an application and received an offer.

I also got great recommendations from my friends in Nottingham who had been enjoying their studies at Nottingham Business School (NBS). I also applied for and won a scholarship which made me feel welcome even before I arrived in Nottingham.

I am glad to say that I am really happy about my choice because upon reflection, NBS has provided me with an experience which reached beyond my expectations.

Can you explain a little about your course? 
My course had a different range of modules, learning methods and assignments. My favourite module was Driving Digital Marketing where I learnt about digital marketing campaigns and how the impact of them can play a big role in contemporary advertising.

My lecturers were highly knowledgeable and they boasted a wide range of publications as well. Lecturer support on assignments was great as they encouraged me to ask questions during seminars and they held additional drop-in sessions as well. For example, while I was doing an assignment, I was able to attend at least two drop-in sessions to ask questions.

The highlight however was the 12 month full-time work placement I added to my masters. I secured my placement in Nottingham Business School and my job is to support the marketing and recruitment activities of NBS.

What key skills have you developed during studying?
My assignments were all about critical thinking and in seminars, we were always encouraged ask questions. For instance, I had to critically reflect on my buying habits for the Contemporary Perspectives in Customer Engagement module.

Another skill I’ve developed during the time at NBS is communication. As a result of different events during the Global Responsibility and Personal Development Weeks, I undertook different activities to improve my style of communication.

Did you get involved with any other activities in Nottingham Business School?
I participated in many events whilst at NBS such as the Thinkubator Challenge, CPD events and the IoD £10 Challenge. I really enjoyed the Thinkubator Challenge as we worked to find a business solution for a company in only a few hours.

For my challenge, I was able to participate in a challenge set by a solicitors firm in Nottingham. As a group, we were able to propose a solution for their challenge to expand their practice into London.

NBS also organised an expert talk series hosted by a group of digital marketing professionals from industry.

The most significant event I participated in was the Global Responsibility Week in Tilburg University in the Netherlands. I was thrilled to have been selected to be a student ambassador along with four of my colleagues from NBS. We got a chance to visit the headquarters of Unilever in Rotterdam and we delivered a presentation on a field lab concept to Tilburg University and one of its industry representatives.

In addition, the Employability team organised events which directly targeted employability skills. I felt that members of the Employability team are highly skilled which made the events relevant. One of the special events I attended was a half day mock assessment centre where I was interviewed by the Talent Sourcing Manager of Experian. I received valuable feedback at the end of the event and it definitely helped me to secure my placement.

I also attended job fairs at NTU’s City and Clifton campuses. Prospective employers came onto campus to talk to students and let them know about vacancies. During the events, I got to meet recruiters from Next and KPMG, for example.

How does Nottingham Business School provide you with support, advice and guidance?
As an international student, I am grateful for the Academic English support I received during the first six months of my course. David Evans, my Academic English tutor was particularly helpful when it comes to assignments, as he would always explain the assignments thoroughly and introduced me to using resources such as the Manchester Phrasebank.

Most importantly, I was delighted to have a very inspiring academic mentor, Angela Enright. She has supported my professional development activities by regularly having meetings and providing me with suggestions for every step of the way.

What do you think about Nottingham as a city for students?
I love Nottingham as a city and it has everything I need. My favourite fashion brands, restaurants and other necessities like banks and transport links are within walking distance.

Nottingham also has great parks. I love having a walk around Wollaton or Arboretum Park all year round. Wollaton Park has a great walking trail and herds of deer complementing the scenery of the park. Arboretum Park is a beautiful hidden green space in the city close to campus which I loved to visit after lectures.

What advice would you give to students considering studying at Nottingham Business School?
Choosing NBS was a choice that I am proud of. NBS is a great place to advance my academic and professional careers at the same time.

I would advise prospective students to make the most out of what NBS has to offer, both academically and socially.

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