Helen Williams

HelenWilliams480by320What did you study at Aston University? MSc Strategy and International Business and BSc Business and Management.
What year did you graduate?
2017 and 2014
What is your current job role?
Marketing Executive
Reynaers Aluminium UK



"I was also impressed with the Business School’s close links to industry and local businesses as I knew this would present networking opportunities."

Why did you choose Aston University? Aston was my first choice due to the prestigious reputation Aston Business School holds, as well as being highly respected amongst graduate employers. I was also impressed with the Business School’s close links to industry and local businesses as I knew this would present networking opportunities.

I decided to return to Aston to study an MSc as I was confident I would be able to repeat the same success I achieved on my Bachelor. I knew Aston’s high standard of teaching and strong emphasis on professional development would provide me with the perfect environment to excel.

What did you enjoy about your course? I really enjoyed the practical aspects of the Masters course, which simulated real work place scenarios such as pitching to clients and presenting a new business idea to mock investors. In both of these examples industry experts were on the panel as part of the assessment team and their feedback was incredibly valuable.

In the seminars I enjoyed looking at case studies and critically evaluating a company’s business strategy. I do believe the course has helped prepare me to become a future business leader and to be able to adapt to a continually changing environment.

What else did you get involved in while you were here? I was a member of 180 Degrees Consulting and I worked in a team to deliver a consulting service to a charity, which involved listening to their needs and presenting a suitable strategy.

I also participated on the BSEEN scheme. The scheme provides start-up support to students and graduates who wish to start a new business venture. This gave me the opportunity to set up my own business and receive mentoring support as well as a business grant to cover the start-up costs.

On my Bachelor I played football for the university women’s team, and I joined Aston Snow Club where I learnt how to ski.

What did you like about living in Birmingham? I really enjoyed living in walking distance to the city centre, which provided convenient access to restaurants and bars as well as other facilities.

What did you do immediately after you graduated? On graduating from my Bachelor I worked abroad in Germany. This gave me the opportunity to experience working in a different country and improve on my German language skills. After graduating from my Masters I worked for a manufacturing business in Birmingham.

What is your current job (position and organisation)? I am currently a Marketing Executive at a company called Reynaers Aluminium UK.

What do you enjoy about it? I enjoy the traveling opportunities my role involves, such as travelling to our head office in Belgium. I also like how wide ranging my role is, giving me the opportunity to get involved in a variety of marketing activities. The company I work for is really exciting and is providing me with a lot of training and development opportunities.

What are your career ambitions for the future? To become a Marketing Director.

What is special about Aston University? I would say the close knit community feel of the campus, as well as the university’s strong links to industry. The quality of the teaching is excellent.

What advice would you give to current Aston students? I would advise current students to take up every opportunity the university offers them as well as attending networking events. Additionally, I would recommend developing a new skill alongside a degree such as learning a language or taking up a new sport. I found in interviews these can be great ways to demonstrate that I can adapt to different environments and pick up new skills.

What do you miss the most about studying at Aston? I miss being apart of a hub of academic research and expertise.

How would you sum up your time at Aston in one word (both in English and your home language!) Inspiring!