Why did you choose to study this course?
I decided to study Sociology as I knew the University was a research-led institution. I knew that by taking Sociology I would have the independence and flexibility to research areas that were of interest to me.
What stands out from your time here?
What stands out about my time at The University of Manchester is the positive relationships I have formed with the lecturers. I found that the lecturers showed such a genuine interest and engagement with you and your sociological interests, it made my degree feel very personal.
What do you feel is unique about studying here?
One of the most unique things is the flexibility to study courses from a different School with the University for Interdisciplinary Learning (UCIL).
During my final year of Sociology, after my internship, I had decided I wanted to focus on social research. UCIL allowed me to take a module from the School of Social Statistics which enabled me to gain experience in quantitative research methods.
What has most benefitted your career? Was there a particular experience that helped?
The aspect that has most benefited my career and future prospects was my Q-Step internship. The Q-step scheme is an 8-week paid student placement for social sciences students to help develop their quantitative skills.
During my placement, I worked for AudienceNet, a social and consumer research agency based in London. This allowed me to broaden my experience on survey writing, data cleaning and project management. As a result of this, I felt confident enough to write my final year dissertation using solely quantitative methods which I explored the association between screen time and sleep duration amongst children using regression analysis.
In addition to the above, there are a number of people at the University who helped me progress to the next stage of my career. Jackie Carter, who was the Q-Step coordinator for my cohort, I felt gave me such a personal investment during my second year in assisting me in selecting, applying and supporting me during my internship. Jackie also remained in close contact when I started working after University. Secondly, Dharmi Kapadia who I relied on when writing my dissertation to help me with my research methods. Dharmi has always gone above and beyond, out of her way and made extra time to make sure I was supported.
If you could name one experience you'll take away with you, what would it be?
The experience that I would take away from my time at Manchester was being fortunate enough to present my dissertation findings to first-year students. It was a way of encouraging and inspiring them to consider quantitative pathways in their degree.
What are your future plans?
I currently work for the Greater Manchester Combined Authority as an Analyst, specialising in employment and skills.
I hope to remain for a number of years and progress within the organisation and gain exposure to more local government and council roles.
What advice would you give to future students?
If you are passionate about social research and sociological inquiry, then Manchester is the place for you.
The flexibility offered through UCIL to explore research methods coupled with the freedom and independence to pursue your own sociological interests allows you to find what motivates you.