More about Tran
Before joining I studied International Business at Foreign Trade University in Vietnam and then a top-up degree in Supply Chain and Logistics. I heard about Nottingham Trent University (NTU) last year through the Vietnam Society in Nottingham, where the MSc Management and Global Supply Chain Management degree with a work placement was recommended to me. I attended an open day and took a tour of the city campus and was impressed by the facilities. I knew that Nottingham Business School is a popular business school for management and has great business links not only locally but also across the world.
I secured my placement at BSH Hausgeräte GmbH in Milton Keynes where I work as a Supply Chain Planner. My main responsibility is inventory planning. I ensure that the business’ stock coverage maintains a positive status and each week I am tasked with improving service levels.
Securing a placement
The two-year master’s degree with a placement year provided me an opportunity to learn more about managing a supply chain and gain practical experience working as a supply chain planner in the UK. The Employability Team was extremely supportive in providing me with help and advice. I went through a CV overview with the team and I also received guidance for interview preparation. I found the process of securing a placement clear and straightforward. I knew getting a placement would be the most difficult task in my MSc year-plan, so I started to look for supply chain positions when I got familiar with the process of job applications.
The following is an overview of my application journey:
- 45 applications sent
- 26 numerical and IQ tests taken
- 10 videos interviews taken
- 4 face to face interviews
- 1 contract signed
I started my application process after participating in an Employability Team workshop about where and how to secure a placement. This was soon after I started in September 2016. I spent one month looking for the right placement opportunity and the whole application process from submission to contract signing lasted two months. I also attended all the on-campus placement fairs give gave me the opportunity to meet prospective employers and discuss placement opportunities with them.
I would advise students to stay calm and keep going as the placement journey can be tough and an application rejection may make you feel downhearted. However, I would say that if you can overcome this initial feeling of rejection, the moment you secure a placement, it is an amazing feeling.
I wanted to study a degree which offered both management and supply chain modules, so the combined degree seemed like a great fit. In addition, the year-long work placement was a unique feature of the degree that was not offered by other business schools. After I graduate, my plan is to immigrate to Canada. I believe the degree will definitely make me more employable. Employers will see that not only do I have a combined-degree but also crucially, experience from a work placement to add to my CV.
At the start of the year we are taught in large classes and then broken down to classes of approx 25 students. A great aspect of NBS is the diversity of the students, I have got to know all my peers, discuss different ideas and learn about different cultures. The Postgraduate community is extremely friendly here and easy to socialise with. My peers were eager to know about my background and getting to know me better. Another aspect I appreciate is the great relationship I have with my course professor. I am able to contact her and confidently discuss any issues I have with her to find a solution.
A key factor affecting my decision to study in Nottingham was the scholarship programme. The scholarship application looked at not only my academic ability, but also my skills, experience and future potential. The application process was straightforward and I was delighted to receive the maximum scholarship available.
The student environment here is really attractive. I particularly like the Newton and Arkwright buildings, which bring an architectural flair. I use the gym in the Students’ Union which is located at the heart of the campus in the city centre. In addition, all students have access to the NOW system which provides access to your timetable, coursework and email all in one place.
My first achievement was receiving great feedback and compliments from my course professors about my presentation ability. This really boosted my confidence as I discovered I have the ability to talk confidently in front of a large number of people, something I wasn't keen on previously. This has helped me develop my presentation and communication skills and I have been considering becoming a lecturer in my home country of Vietnam, something I did not consider before.
Secondly (and something I wasn’t expecting) I overcame my fear of heights! As part of your induction, all postgraduate students go on a residential trip taking part in different obstacle courses and activities at different heights. My course colleagues encouraged me to overcome my fear when taking part and it really helped all of us to develop new friendships before starting our lessons.