International Event Management in the UK

i-studentglobal spoke to recent International Event Management graduate Megan Doyle about her study abroad experience in the UK at the University of Brighton.

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What is International Event Management?

Many people assume that the course is just party planning, but there was a lot more to the subject than this. We took modules in economics, risk and crisis management, operations, business and the theory of event planning.

Why did you decide to study abroad in the UK?

There aren’t many event management courses in the USA, and those which I found were in locations which were either expensive to live or not specifically desirable to me. I took this as an opportunity to move to the UK to broaden my horizon and have the chance to extensively travel.

What were your first thoughts when you arrived in Brighton?

When I first arrived in Brighton, the weather wasn’t great and my first student house was in a bit of a state. However, once I moved houses and got settled into my course, things got considerably better from there on in. I’m still living in Brighton now after I’ve graduated.

Did you find it easy to make friends with UK students here?

I found that it was much easier to make friends with other international students, in particular students from Europe as I found them more laid back and open. Many of the UK students that I met seemed quite settled in groups already and were not necessarily familiar with international students. That said, three of my close friends from university are from the UK.

What did you do for your final year project?

I wrote my dissertation on the Burning Man Festival in Nevada, USA. I was looking at if the ritualism involved with the festival had an effect on the overall experience of the attendees. I chose this because I always found the festival fascinating and it is a goal of mine to attend it.  

Which of your preconceptions of the UK were most accurate and which weren’t?

I knew that the weather in the UK would not be as good as back home, or in Hawaii where I was previously studying, and that held true throughout the course, but I learned to enjoy rainy Sundays and cosy nights in. I knew that the UK had a dry sense of humour, but I’m pleasantly surprised at how much of it has rubbed off on me. Much of it is lost in translation when I go home and joke around with my friends and family.

Did you manage to gain any work experience whilst on your course and if so how did this help you with your studies?

As part of my course, we had to create our own event management companies and host charitable events for a grade. This motivated us even more to do well because our grades were at stake. We hosted music events at a bar to raise money for a local charity, Demelza – a hospice for children.

Is there anything about your course that you’d do differently if you were to start again?

I would advise to go and see your tutors any time that you have any questions or something is unclear. They are there to help you so don’t be afraid to ask.

Finally, what advice would you offer to prospective international students to help them make friends when studying in the UK?

Join some societies at university because they are great ways to meet new people and to get involved in nights out, which can be great fun. Also get involved in themed nights out (fancy dress nights).

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Megan is one of the employees at i-studentglobal. If you have any inquiries, feel free to contact her via email. 

FURTHER READING

Interview with an Environmental Science Alumni - Rebecca Cavlan

Interview with a Vet Science Alumni - Carla Kelly

Interview with a Graphic Designer - Oliver Jenkins

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