By Luke Hope-Robertson, Pearson Business School student
When I applied for Pearson College London it was very much a jump in the deep end! I’d not heard of it before - nor had my teachers or parents. One of my friends had applied which lead me to do some digging into what this mysterious university was! It didn’t take too much digging to realise that it was everything that I wanted – and more. I knew that I wanted to work in a large corporation, and Pearson College London would be a great place to start!
For a start off, walking into the offices of a FTSE100 company every day gives you a great insight into what the world of business is like. You experience the buzz of being a part of a large, multi-national company. As a result of being a part of Pearson you gain so many advantages. Pearson PLC has so many ties with such an array of businesses which we are lucky enough to take advantage of! We have so many great guest lectures from highly successful business people who take time out of their busy schedule to teach us. As an example, we had a number of guest lectures from employees at Lloyds of London. Not only were they highly insightful, but they lead to recruiting one of our classmates as a four-month intern. Gaining such insight from such successful and intellectual people has helped teach me crucial business knowledge which, I hope, will help me in getting a graduate job. It is also invaluable gaining such people as personal contacts, they are more than happy to help us out with any queries we may have. They also are happy to help us gain crucial internships, which look great on our CVs!
In the eight months I’ve been here I’ve visited some of the largest corporations not only in the UK but also the world. We went to a two-day event with Direct Line and also a day at Unilever’s headquarters. These are all experiences you don’t get at traditional universities and such experiences, I believe, will open doors for many years to come.
I had originally applied for four Russell Group universities as well as Pearson College London. I decided to have two of them as my firm and insurance choices. I soon changed my mind! What was great about the process during Clearing was the fact you always had a personal contact if you had any queries or needed any help. I spoke to Steven Wallace (Manager of Admissions and Student Funding) numerous times and was amazed at how professional and helpful he was throughout the whole process. He made not only I, but my parents, feel so at ease throughout the process!
I’ve worked on a number of projects in my first year. Two have been a real highlight. Firstly, we had a 10 week project of creating a consumer good that was not yet out on the market. We had to then present our idea to the ex-Vice President of HR at Unilever! That 20 minute presentation taught me so much as we were able to gain such great feedback from Geoff McDonald, not only on our presenting styles but also the project as a whole. Another project which I’ve just completed was one in India. We worked with India’s first 100% certified Fairtrade, organic clothing company. We were tasked with trying to find 15 new stores that would stock our brand ‘No Nasties’. In India, one farmer commits suicide every 30 minutes due to debt forced by monopolistic seed suppliers. By using Fairtrade standards, no such debt exists. It was vital we spread the word of Fairtrade, organic clothing as this doesn’t have to happen! I felt a personal responsibility for this task, and by gaining just one sale I knew I’d be making a difference to somebody’s life. Not only did I make a difference to somebody’s life but I learnt so many great business lessons. Being a part of a start-up was such a change from being part of a corporation like Pearson – but the lessons were so great and I’ll keep them with me for years to come.
My top tips for students looking for a place at uni this September are:
Don’t just decide on the nightlife (London would still win though)! You’re making a huge decision that will affect your career for the rest of your life. Make sure you’ve done as much research into your chosen university as possible. You’re making a huge life choice, and you don’t have to do it alone! If you have a question, ask the university or find one of their students – past or present. We’ve made the decision you’re making and would love to make it an easier one. From a financial position, make sure you work out a budget and make sure you have the required funds in place – London is expensive, but it doesn’t have to be!
Finally, enjoy it! It really is ‘the best time of your life’!
Interested in studying Business from within a FTSE 100 Company? Check out the Pearson Business School section of our website.