2 July 2020

The online event for MSc students was supported by alumni from easyJet Holidays, Marelli, FIFA, and more to tackle real-world challenges facing businesses.
Alumni Support 8 Hour Challenge Career Event

The Business School hosted an 8 Hour Challenge Career Development Day for a number of MSc students at the end of June. This was an online interactive event to help students acquire practical experience while developing solutions for real-life business challenges, many of which were provided by alumni.

The alumni participants included:

  • Garry Wilson (BCom 1994), CEO of easyJet Holidays
  • Evie Chamberlain (MSc 2014), Experiential Marketing and Promotions Manager at FIFA
  • Nicola McGowan (MBA 2012), Vice President of Global Communications at Marelli
  • Sam Trett (MBA 2003), Founder and Managing Director of LoCa Bev

Also supporting the event were Andy Macmillan (MBA 2003), CEO of UserTesting, and Nadja Wolfer (2017), Mercedes-Benz AG.

Talking about the experience, Garry Wilson said: "It was a great opportunity to give back and help students walking the same path at the same university as I once did. One of the groups was tasked with an easyJet Holidays challenge. We provided some background information about our brand new business which only launched in November last year, and the task in hand was to look at ways to make the brand as famous for holidays as it is for flights, against the background of the Covid-19 environment.

"It was really encouraging to see the students' creative and well-thought-out approach, and it was great to be able to inspire future business graduates about the world of travel."

Assigned the business case for Marelli, MSc Human Resource Management student, Marina Drania said: "Working remotely and in different time zones made this experience even more exciting, as we were exposed to the real challenges faced by teams operating on an international scale."

MSc Marketing student Allison Lawrence also found the event fun and challenging. She commented: "Experience like this is one reason why the Business School is so special. In almost every single class of my course, we have been given face time with a real business client to develop marketing solutions to real problems. It's been really fun and rewarding to have those experiences."

The event was organised by Peter Maksimczyk, Student Development Manager, Flaminia Raiteri from the Student Development Team, and Andrew Bell from the Alumni Team.

Following the event, Peter said: "The 8 Hour Challenge was a unique opportunity in the current environment to bring together our current student cohort with a diverse range of business and alumni contacts. By working on live business projects, our students were able to gain practical insight into the challenges facing organisations today as well as network and develop vital career-related skills in a short but effective space of time."

If you are interested in sharing your expertise with current students in a future even like this or in other ways such as mentoring or as a guest speaker, please contact the Alumni Team.

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