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IM students describe their experiences of studying and working abroad

For ambitious students looking to enhance their employability whilst studying an undergraduate degree, choosing between a work placement and study abroad presents a difficult dilemma. Those choosing to study BSc (Hons) International Management (IM) at Alliance Manchester Business School benefit from the best of both worlds. These students have the chance to both study and work abroad, through completing an international internship at the end of their exchange year and/or part-time work alongside their studies.

This unique opportunity transforms IM students into highly employable graduates, with a truly global mindset. Combining studying, working, living and travelling abroad into one action-packed year, our students spoke to us about their life-changing experience and how this has launched their graduate careers.

Amy Day (2018) spent her year abroad at the University of Melbourne. Amy’s formal study hours were less restrictive in Australia, so she secured a part-time marketing and communications internship at the Refugee Migrant Children Centre for nine months.

What did your internship involve?

“I was given real responsibility from the get-go. I really got to understand the sector and marketing side of not-for-profits much better. My internship taught me how to code websites, measure social media engagement and deal with organisational change.”

What did you gain from your year abroad?

“I most enjoyed working in an international setting and gaining overseas experience. Working abroad, I made a new bunch of friends and it was a really nice way to get to know Melbourne better.”

Amy pursued her interest in marketing and is now a marketing executive for Mr Kipling at Premier Foods, having completed their commercial graduate programme.

Erim Lally (2017) spent her year at the prestigious Emory University in Atlanta, USA. Erim is a self-confessed “social media enthusiast” and the best part of her exchange was “securing a summer internship as a social media and search associate at BKV marketing agency in Atlanta.”

What did your internship involve?

“My responsibilities included assisting with social media initiatives such as organic and paid search campaigns, reporting and analytics for brand campaigns, researching trends and news in social media for the agency’s own social messaging calendar and assisting the search team.”

What did you gain from your year abroad?

“I gained a greater understanding of American business through my year abroad and summer internship.”

Erim went on to work as a social media consultant in the fashion and beauty industries, before leveraging her 180k Instagram following and founding her own luxury beauty business in 2018. 

IM graduate Chloe Nightingale completed a 12-week supply-chain summer internship at Unilever at the end of her exchange year at VU Amsterdam. 

What did your internship involve? 

“I was in charge of setting up a new paperless system on the factory floor. It was interesting experiencing working in a factory as opposed to an office. I really enjoyed the responsibility of managing my own project and seeing it all come together, making real improvements to the efficiency of the factory.” 

What did you gain from your year abroad?

“It has definitely given me an insight into what it would be like to work for an international corporate company. Working in a real business environment brought the theory I learnt in the classroom alive by seeing it applied in a real-life context.

“I made friends for life, travelled to various other places in the Netherlands independently, a few German cities, including Berlin, as well as Copenhagen and Barcelona.”

Chloe graduated in 2016 and now works as a policy officer at the UK Department of Health, liaising with UK embassies around the world and foreign governments on a daily basis. 

Samuel Cooke (2018) completed an international exchange and internship in Hong Kong as part of his IM degree. 

What did your internship involve? 

“My role as a research analyst intern at Stanton House involved supporting the head of asset management to fulfil mandates from leading clients in the APAC region.”

What did you gain from your year abroad?

“As the world continues to become highly globalised, employers look for adaptable graduates with a global mindset… gaining a thoroughly international understanding of the departments and positions available across financial services and asset management as part of my internship was really interesting.”

After landing a graduate role at The Hut Group, an international FMCG e-commerce company, Samuel has now joined Accenture’s technology division where he is currently working on cloud implementations at leading FTSE 100 companies. 

Final year student and President of the International Society, Jade Purewal spent her year abroad at the University of Florida and describes it as “by far the best experience of my entire life”. Jade made the most of time, travelling to “Miami, L.A, New York, New Orleans and The Bahamas for Spring Break” as well as laying the foundations for a career abroad.

What did you gain from your year abroad?

“The best part of the exchange was gaining independence and expanding my web of networks all around the globe which has opened up so many doors and opportunities for me. I even got the opportunity to participate in a leadership case competition with Procter & Gamble - one of the biggest FMCG companies in the world.

“Once you move abroad, you have the confidence to do anything… I had an interview with Aldi USA for a district manager position in March.”

There is no other degree like it… have the time of your life studying overseas at a world-class university and making friends from across the globe, at the same time as setting up your future career.

Find out more about our International Management programme >>

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