My names Alex Petrovic, and I’m a proud former graduate from the University of Brighton/University of Brighton Alumni (and a born-and-bred Brightonian!) – who has returned as an Apprentice Marketing Projects officer.
What have you got up to since leaving the university?
Since leaving the University I was working for Legal & General as an Engagement, Wellbeing & HR Coordinator. This role primarily involved internal staff communications and organising wellbeing events.
In my spare time I have also organised several sell-out comedy nights for St Barnabas Hospice, which in total raised over £5,000. The nights included TV name comedians such as Romesh Ranganathan, Zoe Lyons, Nish Kumar, Ed Gamble and Maisie Adam. In addition to this, I also set up my own podcast from scratch, which was featured in the ‘New and Noteworthy’ charts in iTunes and some episodes received over 5,000 listens.
What you are doing now?
I’ve now decided on a bit of a career change and want to develop my existing marketing knowledge. Although I’ve had some marketing experience, I knew there was a lot more to learn and experience to be gained. When this opportunity of an apprenticeship working at the University of Brighton came up, it seemed too good to be true. So I’m now an Apprentice Marketing Projects Officer, marketing the University’s Higher and Degree apprenticeships.
I’m only two months into the role but I’m really enjoying it, and its great being back with the University, albeit in a different capacity. I look after our twitter account for businesses and I’ve recently set up our dedicated showcase page for apprenticeships at the University over on LinkedIn – feel free to give us a follow!
How your degree helped you with your career?
The variety of modules in my Media Studies degree, gave me a broad understanding of different fields within the creative industries. In our final year we also did a marketing module, which gave me a foundation for understanding the principles of marketing. I was then able to apply this directly to projects such as the charity comedy nights and podcast. This in turn, ultimately led me to decide to make this career change down a marketing route.
Writing in academic style throughout my degree, in addition to my placement with NME.com where I was in creating blogs, allowed me to experience writing in different styles for a variety of audiences. As a result of my degree, it helped me realise that my writing ability was one of my strongest skills and this was something I wanted to make use of in any career path I chose. This directly influenced my communications work in my previous role and writing press releases, marketing comedy nights and podcasts.
Any tips for students or recent graduates?
As soon as you graduate, although the direction you want to take might not be immediately clear to you, it’s important not to panic. Everyone goes at a different pace, so it’s important not to put too much pressure on yourself right away. You’ll figure it out and it might be a direction you least expected. You never know, you too might end up back at the University like I did.
Another thing I would say is keep in touch with people, LinkedIn for example is great for this – almost 9 years after graduating, I’m still reaching out to people I went to the University with. Including my tutor Dr Paula Hearsum, who I’ve kept in touch with since leaving and was actually my character reference for my new role.
A standout memory from your time at Brighton – something you really cherish.
This might be a slightly obvious one but one of my favourite things from my time at the University aside from many happy memories, is the life-long friends I made whilst there. One example, is someone I got on with so well the first time we met, the second time we met we were in a travel agent booking an impromptu and suspiciously cheap weekend in New York with some other friends we’d just made. It was an amazing trip and a real bonding experience. We’re friends to this day, and I was recently honoured to be asked to be his daughters Godfather.
The irony of The Godfather film being set in New York, is not lost on me.
Alex’s LinkedIn account if you would like to connect: https://www.linkedin.com/in/alex-petrovic/