- Course: BA International Studies
- Year of graduation: 2000
- Nationality: Japan
Please tell us a bit about yourself and your background.
I did my International Baccalaureate in Singapore and I started my career in Singapore after my graduation. I have been working in Tokyo for 10 years.
How would you describe your experience at the University and what elements would you describe as the most enjoyable?
It gave me a sense of independence and community life at the same time. In Leeds, you had the freedom to choose either to concentrate on your academic life or to socialise.
What did you think of your course? How has this helped in your chosen career?
It was good that you could choose your modules from a wide range of selections across departments. It was a broad course and theory based. I proceeded to the banking industry so the course was not directly related to my career. However, it gave me a basic knowledge to analyse the market from multiple dimension. It also gave me skills for research and report writing.
How would you describe the help and guidance given by the staff within the School?
It was always up to you. If you ask for help there is always assistance, but you need to reach out. Also, you have to look out for the information you need and I was at the University before the SNS was a popular tool.
Please tell us about your development since graduating from the university and how do you think your time at Leeds has helped with this?
I started my career in Singapore with a Japanese bank. In small overseas branches, your job scope tends to be broad such as translation, market report writing, customer support and organizing events. I think logical thinking, research and writing skills, as well as intercultural communication skills were applicable to any fields.
Please tell us about your current role/research. What are your plans for the future?
I am currently working for a Japanese EC company and exporting their products overseas.
I would like to challenge market analysis and more active marketing.
What would be your top tips in terms of careers advice for current students?
Academic performance is very important. However, actively seek your opportunity for internship and part-time jobs. It would help you to understand yourself which would help you to plan realistic career goals.
Any other comments you would like to make?
It is certainly very important to pick up modules which would give you transferable skills to put you in a better position in the job market. However, once you started working you would realise later in your life that it was such a privilege to have time to study “un-pragmatic” subjects such as philosophy, history, theology, sociology, etc. It would give you good foundation and depth to your life.
Also, the friendships you make at the University would last for a very long time and it will be your lifelong treasure.