Although we are sure that our postgraduate applicants are excited about the prospect of taking further study, we also know that choosing your university, faculty and degree can be daunting and confusing, especially if you are considering studying abroad. That’s why anyone who receives an offer (conditional or unconditional) for a postgraduate degree at Westminster Business School gets extra support from our Postgraduate Applicant Officers, Kasia and Joe. To find out how they can help you to prepare for your graduate experience, read on!
Introducing your Postgraduate Applicant Officers, Kasia and Joe!
K: Hi! My name is Kasia and as you already know I work as one of the Postgraduate Applicant Officers at Westminster Business School. My background is in hospitality and tourism as I studied Tourism with Business at the University of Westminster and worked in the hotel industry for over 8 years in total! Yes, that’s right! I studied here on this very same campus and am thrilled to be back and make a difference 🙂
J: Hello! My name is Joe and I have been a Postgraduate Applicant Officer for some years now. Although I did not study my postgraduate degree at Westminster, I took my Master’s abroad at Uppsala University in Sweden and I am a proper Londoner. I like to think that the fact that I can draw on my own personal experience of living and studying in a foreign country for a year makes me uniquely placed to relate to the applicants I help on a daily basis. My academic background is in history and politics and as a proud Londoner I am passionate about the social history of our city and sites of historical interest, which you can find on many seemingly unremarkable street corners. I love cats!
So what does a Postgraduate Applicant Officer do?
K: My role as one of the Postgraduate Applicant Officers is extremely exciting! First of all, I am here to offer all postgraduate applicants help and guidance with whatever they might need during their application process. I like to think Joe and I act as a kind of concierge (yes, I know, my hospitality background shows) – answering your questions, providing you with useful information or directing you to right people or places if we are not able to give you a clear answer. We keep in touch with our postgraduate applicants via telephone, email, Facebook and more which means we get to know you a little bit before you even show up on the campus. It’s a rewarding role and I truly love talking to applicants who look forward to fulfilling their dream of postgraduate study and being able to help make this (sometimes lengthy) application process a bit smoother.
J: Well concierge is a good analogy of the kind of services we provide. There is definitely a practical dimension to our role as Kasia has described but there is also an emotional component. Making students feel at home and welcome here before they arrive is an essential part of our job. Moving to a new city, overcoming culture shock and preparing yourself to study a Master’s degree in what might not be your first language is a massive undertaking. We are here as a general point-of contact for prospective students between application and enrolment which is an appreciable length of time lasting several months. So it is medium term effort and allows us to build relationships with the people we contact. We liaise with all departments and colleagues in the university from the Admissions Office to the Registry Team to our teaching staff to accomplish this and give new students all the information that they need.
What do you most frequently help students with?
K: We get asked just about anything from questions on important deadlines and accommodation to questions about student life, but I think my favourite are these concerning living in London. It might be because I am passionate about the city itself and the multitude of possibilities it offers to all who want to grab them. I, myself enjoy going on walks around the city and discovering its hidden gems.
J: Well a whole range of enquiries: how to pay tuition fees, IELTS (for overseas students), the enrolment process, what to expect at enrolment, suggestions for pre-course/preparatory reading are just a few examples that spring to mind. If you are a Westminster Business School postgraduate applicant and happen to be in London, we can also take you on a personal tour of Marylebone Campus, the home of Westminster Business School.
What advice would you give our applicants and new starters?
K: One piece of advice I could definitely give to all new students is – make most of your time here and grab every opportunity that presents itself. You can’t imagine the myriad of possibilities our students are exposed to during their time here, and these are extra courses, interesting speeches and debates, networking and social events, societies, trips and more. And I can assure you every year it’s getting better and better! It definitely makes me want to be a student again!
J: To international students, having studied abroad myself I couldn’t recommend it more. You’ll make friends from all over the world and gain exposure and insights into different cultures, traditions, cuisines, literature and languages. What’s more London is one of the world’s great cities and a melting pot of many different cultures which only goes to enhance this experience. And don’t worry it takes a few days (homesickness is only natural) but you will soon settle in.