9 March 2022
What attracted you to the role of Alumni Relations Manager at the Business School?
I have worked in alumni relations for almost eight years now, which I find quite hard to believe. I have always found alumni relations to be varied, interesting and inspiring. I have met people across continents and industries and learnt from people I’m sure I would never have otherwise encountered.
There were two main reasons for my interest in the role at the Business School. Firstly, I was looking to move back to Scotland after several years living in London, and secondly, I was really interested in working within the Business School and having a closer interaction with students and staff, as well as with the alumni community.
I’m currently in week three and have had such a warm welcome to the School from staff—I’m really looking forward to getting to know our alumni and future alumni (students!).
We gather you already have a connection to Edinburgh University—can you tell us more?
I actually have two! I am an alumna myself, though not the Business School. I graduated with a Geography MA in 2010 and am still close friends with several people I met in halls and on my course.
The second connection is that my very first role in alumni relations was in the University of Edinburgh’s central alumni team, as the team’s alumni administrator. I had never heard of alumni relations before then, but quickly discovered there was more to it than sending out an annual magazine!
Can you tell us about the roles you’ve held elsewhere and what experience you bring?
After my role at Edinburgh University, I moved to London and worked at Goldsmiths College with a small team, working with international alumni ambassadors and inviting more local alumni to come back and speak to students on careers panels. I travelled to Seoul and Berlin with Goldsmiths and loved the international element of the role.
I then moved to Imperial College London, more similar in size to Edinburgh, where I again worked with alumni volunteers, as well as collaborating closely with the Business School alumni team on international activity. I was there for four years and so navigated the pandemic during that time. I found that it actually became a period of deepening existing relationships with our alumni around the world. And while everyone is a bit tired of Zoom after two years, I hope that sense of easier connection with those further away will continue. Although nothing compares to meeting people in real life.
What are you most excited about in this new role?
I’m really looking forward to getting stuck into the role and meeting Business School alumni at events, online, even over email. We are starting to plan what this year’s Global Alumni Day will look like. I think it will be a great opportunity to celebrate our community and I sincerely hope that some of the day will be in person. We obviously can’t be everywhere at once so I think creating some really meaningful online experiences will be a big part of that. If you have any ideas, please do get in touch.
When you're not at the Business School, can you give us an example of one of your interests?
I love flowers! I have done the flowers for a few friends’ weddings and really enjoy playing around with them in my spare time. I am not business minded at all though so I won’t be switching career any time soon!
Now that you're back living in Edinburgh, what are your favourite places in the city and what did you miss most when you were away?
I’m temporarily living in Portobello, so I am loving being right beside the beach. London lacked a beach! Every day I’ve come into the office on the bus, I’m a bit awe-struck by how amazing that Edinburgh skyline is, I’ve definitely missed that. I haven’t missed the weather but I’m enjoying the brighter days as we come into spring and look forward to seeing all of the cherry blossom coming out soon.
If alumni want to reach out to you, what's the best way to do this?
Feel free to reach me on email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or via LinkedIn. I look forward to seeing you online or in person soon.