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Ifeoluwa Babatunde

BSc Human Resource Management

Summer Experience internship at Mind in Bradford 

A picture of an employer and student on summer experience placement

Were you always interested in attending university?

University was always my plan. Since I was old enough to start seriously thinking about my future and career paths, I knew that attending university was going to be part of it regardless.

Why did you choose the University of Bradford?

The story of how I came to choose the University of Bradford is not a particularly interesting one Haha. I had heard in passing that the university was good for business related degree's and, when I did my own research, I arrived at the same conclusion. After that it was a quick look into student life in Bradford (how much it cost and what was the culture like) and when it did nothing to change my mind, I went ahead and listed the UoB as my first choice. 

Can you tell me about your work experience?

My work experience is in the role of Marketing and Communication's, working with the business development team. My main responsibilities are drafting and designing social and blog posts, but I have also attended a public event with a pop-up stall, re-designed the signage around the office and even had to get into character as "someone going through a mental health crisis" in a promotional video for the company's new support service. 

What the application process was like?

To apply I had to send a cover letter alongside my CV, which was fine as I had experience writing cover letters from previous (failed) internship applications. After about a week they had contacted an interview date which made me happy and on the 6th of June I sat at the cluttered desk of my student accommodation and met the marketing and communication's team for the first time for an interview. Within the same week, they had gotten back in touch and said I was successful, and I started on the 20th of June! The application process was quick, but not rushed, and could not have worked out better for me!

University to me is the opportunity to get all the support you need while you are still at an age where people are not only willing to give it to you but encourage you to use them and their services to help get your leg up in life.

Did you face any challenges in your career journey so far?

I have been lucky with the fact that I have not faced any real challenges in my career so far, apart from the stress of trying to find work experience to put on my CV before I graduated. Yet, I will say that adjusting to the world of work as a student who liked her free time and peace was a challenge initially Haha! It was difficult to retrain myself to work towards 24-hour deadlines as opposed to the 3 months given for coursework and assignments but the team, I am put under are good with delegating tasks of increasing complexity and made the transition much smoother.

Why do you think it is important to get work experience during university?

University to me is the opportunity to get all the support you need while you are still at an age where people are not only willing to give it to you but encourage you to use them and their services to help get your leg up in life. I thought it was important to get work experience as without it how many 20-something year old's graduate university with the relevant experience to join corporate teams and assimilate into the work culture with ease? Not many. I was worried that I would struggle finding work if I did not have something behind me to show that although I've just graduated, I am more than capable of doing a good job and have the evidence to prove it. Work experience has also given me confidence in my capabilities to do a good job and makes me feel reassured that I am ready for whatever may happen to me once I have started to walk on my career path. 

What advice would you give our current students and graduates based on your experiences?

Although I hated hearing it and refused to see it as actual advice and not just nagging from those who care, don't give up. Even if the first five interviews did not work out as planned (and in my experience they really didn't), see them as part of your work experience. Those failures will teach you things how to better answer, behave and prepare for interviews and once you go for your sixth, you'll have learnt enough to make you the perfect candidate. I'd say let yourself be upset for a bit but make sure to pick yourself back up after, it'll work out the way it's supposed to!