I hope you are all well and staying safe. This week I decided to bring different content to my blog. Since I am always talking about my course, today I am bringing you an interview that I did with one of my best friends who is currently in the BA (Hons) Hospitality and Tourism Management programme.
1. Introduce yourself
Hello, my name is Mariana. I’m 22 years old, and I am from Portugal. I am currently in my third year in Hospitality and Tourism Management.
2. Why did you choose to come to the UK and study at University College Birmingham?
When applying to university back home, I found out that I did not have the specific grades to study what I love. Then I found out about OK Estudante, a company that helps Portuguese students to study in the UK. In one meeting, they gave me a list with a lot of universities. University College Birmingham stood out because of the course and the modules, but also because it is situated in Birmingham, which is the second-largest city in England and provides a lot of opportunities because it is growing.
3. What do you like most about your course?
As mentioned before, I am studying Hospitality and Tourism Management. What I really like about my course is the practical side of it, which allows me to put into practice what I have learned in class, and this is also where I achieve the higher grades. At the moment, my favourite module is Hospitality Investigations because it makes me research more, and I was allowed to choose the theme that I wanted to base my report on. If you are curious, it’s about ‘over-tourism’, which might be my topic for my dissertation next year.
4. What did you think about doing a placement year, and how was it helpful for you?
I did my placement last year. To be honest, at first I didn’t want to do it and I almost asked to be exempted from it – I have been working in the hospitality industry for three years now, having done placements at different hotels, so I thought that another placement wouldn’t make any difference. By the time we had to apply for the 12-month placement, the hotel I was working for offered me a management position, which I knew was perfect for my CV and would definitely be beneficial for my learning as well. During the 12 months, I gained a lot of skills such as better communication, I learned how to deal with complaints and at the same time deal with my emotions because I used to be very nervous when a customer was complaining, and obviously I developed management skills that will help me in the future.
5. What is your favourite place on campus?
My favourite area on campus at the moment is the dining area in Moss House.
6. What do you want to do after you finish your degree?
After I complete my undergraduate degree, I am planning to do a master’s degree, and later on, I want to open my own hotel in Portugal. In the future, I might consider doing a PhD, but I am not sure yet.
7. Can you give any advice to future students on your course?
The best advice I can give is to enjoy as much as you can during the 4 years. If you are an international student or you are not from Birmingham, enjoy the city and everything that University College Birmingham has to offer you. Keep in mind that there is time to work, study and to have fun, and if you can balance everything, I assure you that you will have the best university experience.
I hope you enjoyed this interview with one of my best friends and let me know if you would like me to bring more conversations with people from different courses.
See you next week and be safe.