SSU Converging Careers Conference 2015: Part 1

On Thursday, Solent put on their first school wide event for the School of Communications and Marketing – PR, Marketing, Advertising and Journalism students. After a welcome from programme leader, Richard Berry, the conference was made up of industry experts and Solent alumni who shared their own career experiences and advice for soon-to-be graduates on how to keep up with the industry and be successful in our own careers.


Read on to hear about the speakers’ personal experiences and top advice for students like yourselves! This post will be done in 2 parts so I can keep as much detail in that the speakers shared, so stay tuned for part 2…

Catherine Sweet, past lecturer at Solent who has worked in Marketing, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs.

Catherine is a walking example of converging careers; her work has covered all the areas the students at the conference are working towards, but she also has the angle of being an employer in these areas. Catherine talked about the “old pathway” which was: you get your PR degree –> you work for an agency –> you might go on to work in-house. This is no longer the case! Job titles will now vary from just ‘PR’ to social media manager, digital planner or content manager, to name a few. Likewise, jobs and employers will look for the words ‘digital’, ‘media’ and ‘brand’ – not just ‘PR’.

Catherine’s top tips:

  • It’s what you do with the degree that makes the difference
  • Get out of your comfort zone
  • Search for jobs outside of the box
  • Use work experience, freelance work and dissertations to build your portfolio
  • Identify Solent graduates since 2009 and research them on LinkedIn and Facebook to see their job titles
Follow Catherine on Twitter, @CSweetPR

Follow Catherine on Twitter, @CSweetPR

Steven Woodgate, Solent University MA Graduate and Marketing Manager at Microsoft UK

After graduating in Sports Journalism, Steven has worked his way up at Microsoft UK (3 promotions in 3 years!) after deciding whilst travelling that he wanted to work in an industry where he could make an impact. Steven is, in fact, already making an impact – I had a chat with him back in June 2014 after he was recognised as one of 70 Rising Social Media Stars. Read here!

Steven kicked off his talk with this quote:

“Digital is more significant than the industrial revolution, we just don’t know it yet.”

Steven talked about the new types of jobs for the digital era; he actually tweeted someone about a potential job offer, and the following Monday he had a job interview for a social media role at Microsoft! The power of digital, eh?! As Catherine mentioned, job titles have changed and Steven believes that in 5 years time they will change again – we have to change our attitudes and adapt to these changes in order to have a successful career.

Steven’s top tips:

  • Be a squirrel. Collect small nuts of knowledge.
  • Have the right attitude in order to achieve your dream career
  • Trust your intuition – it’s what got you here!
Follow Steven on Twitter, @StevenWoodgate

Follow Steven on Twitter, @StevenWoodgate

Stay tuned for part 2!

Solent PR Editor


One response to “SSU Converging Careers Conference 2015: Part 1

  1. Pingback: Converging Careers Conference 2015 at Southampton Solent University | Bright Lights Big City·

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