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Ayotola Owolabi

MSc Finance, Accounting & Management (2014)
Graduate Management Development Programme with Nigerian Breweries

Ayotola Owolabi

Why did you apply to the University of Bradford and why did you choose your course?

My first degree was in Accounting in the US; this allowed me to re-assess my desires and future goals. Hence, I decided to go for a new pursuit, a post graduate degree in Finance, Accounting and Management. I chose University of Bradford School of Management mainly because of the modules taught in my desired degree and due to the academic excellence and reputation of the University. I believed that the School of Management classes were of substance and also because of the triple accreditation. Moreover, another reason for making my decision in favour of Bradford, because it is one of the cheapest places in the UK to live and because of its diverse ethnicity.

What did you like and enjoy about the University and your course?

The environment of the university was conducive for learning. The Careers Fairs and lectures from past students and invited guests were worth going. I enjoyed the service of the Career Development Service. Based on my course, I would say I have no regrets picking that course. It was a great one-year experience. The diversity of people from all round the world turned the studying into an educating and exciting experience.  In addition the lecturers were experienced, accessible and ready to assist if help were needed.

How did Career Development Services support you during your time at University?

The Career Development Services had been of great support since the first term of my studies; starting from the first draft of my CV and Covering Letter to the lectures given on how to write your CV/resume and ending with the interview, assessment centre and psychometric tests preparations for jobs. Career Development Advisers helped me in improving my competitive advantage, which gave me more confidence and equipped me for the interviews and assessment centre that I attended and eventually secured a job.

What action did you take to improve your employability whilst at university?

I attended the Career Development Services workshops and also attended business seminars at the School of Management, which gave me the opportunity to have a better knowledge of the business environment. In addition, I improved my employability by studying for the SAP BI (Business Intelligence) Certification in order to be a SAP BI Consultant. I made sure I did a lot of practice questions for the job aptitude test.

What advice would you give to your fellow international students about improving their employability?

Take chances and get your CV checked as early as possible during your first term in Bradford. This will help you in getting a standard CV, which could later be fine-tuned, to any company applied to. Attend workshops such as interview and assessment centre workshops. These workshops will prepare you and boost your confidence.  During these workshops, constructive feedback is given and they will be of help. In addition, it is necessary to start thinking about your career while you work on your degree, start applying for jobs early and making sure your CVs are out there for companies to see and lastly, if you need help, book an appointment with a Career Development Adviser –  the service is free and helpful!

What did you enjoy most about being an international student at the University of Bradford?

Being an international student at the University of Bradford was a great experience. The exposure and opportunities given through the course made my studying worthwhile. I enjoyed interacting, meeting and working with people from different countries which created the opportunity to make friends and meet contacts that are irreplaceable.  The atmosphere at the university also helped in making my stay in Bradford memorable. The trips organised by the university made my stay interesting and also created an opportunity to learn the UK culture.

What would you say about the University of Bradford and the city to prospective international students?

The University of Bradford is a great university, especially the School of Management (SOM) where I had my lectures. The SoM has a great reputation and the environment is conducive for learning. The lectures were great and I enjoyed every lecture and the lecturers were fully prepared. Attendance in class is very important and the exercises such as group work and presentation will help in facing fears and improve you as a student. Overall it is a great school and the experience was great.

Tell us about your current job …

I applied to various companies including Nigerian Breweries, through the Careers in Africa website by uploading my CV through their portal.  I was successful and was offered a Graduate Management Development Programme with Nigerian Breweries. My future plans are to sit for the CFA exams and also complete my CPA exams, which I already started and lastly be SAP BI (Business Intelligence) certified.


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