Human Resource Management Student at graduation.

Wenqing Xiao

Why did you decide to study MA Human Resource Management? What attracted you to the University of Leeds? Have you been happy with your choice?   

I decided to study MA Human Resource Management after thinking deeply about personal career planning and my own characteristics. Today, HRM can be extremely challenging, and I am personally very interested in the field and finding solutions to meet these new obstacles.  More than ever before, HRM now incorporates data analysis, business intelligence, and strategic planning. It is crucial to consider different HR directions, data design and interpretation, and to be able to clearly and accurately understand the business's demands for Human Resource management. I am very satisfied with my choice to study at Leeds University Business School as it has allowed me to truly master Human Resource Management. 

In your opinion, what are the main strengths of MA Human Resource Management course at Leeds University Business School? Which aspects of the course, for example, specific modules, were of particular interest to you?   

The curriculum of the MA Human Resource Management course at Leeds University Business School is very professionally focused. The elective courses ‘Gender and Equality at Work in Comparative Perspective’ and ‘Diversity Management’ were of particular interest.  

The module leader, Professor Jennifer Tomlinson, is a Director for the ‘Centre for Employment Relations, Innovation and Change’. She provides important leadership in the strategically vital area of inclusive learning and teaching. Studying ‘Gender and Equality at Work in Comparative Perspective’ taught me that the gender pay gap is a long-standing phenomenon and its causes are complex. Through studying this module, I now understand how unequal or unfair treatment may have negative impacts; marginalizing women, hindering their contribution to social and economic development as active members of society, and restricting their entry into the labour market.   

‘Diversity Management’ exposes students to the growing importance of diversity management in organisational settings and the increase in social exclusion in society, analysing its implications for Human Resource management. Additionally, ‘A Critical Perspective on Research Evidence based on Various Protected Characteristics’ looks at real business cases for Human Resource management diversity policies and practices in organisations, with implications for future career development.  

Tell us a little bit more about the role of teaching staff and fellow students in your experience of studying at Leeds University Business School 

Facing the dual pressures of Covid-19 and being an international student, entering an unknown learning environment away from my own country and loved ones initially made me feel lost and anxious. However, the friendly staff members of the University of Leeds not only gave us pre-departure guidance and support online, but also often held online meetings for us to raise any difficulties we were facing in study, and life, to help us solve them. This gave me a lot of courage and laid the foundation for my positive performance in various activities that followed.  

Which experiences gained during your studies are the most useful and important for your future career development?  

I acquired solid professional knowledge and soft skills during my time at Leeds. The Human Resource Management Masters was an integral step in realising my career aspirations. As a leading course in the field, it not only equipped me with intellectual and practical skills that are widely used in the workplace, but also developed my decision-making and problem-solving abilities, essential for analytical and strategic management in corporate Human Resource Management. In addition, Leeds' diverse faculty, student body, and strong connections to world-class institutions provided me with a global perspective, supporting my career development. 

Whilst studying at Leeds, I also served as a student representative for MA Human Resource Management. Through talks with faculty members, students, and other student representatives, not only did I develop my communication and coordination skills, but, to a certain extent, I exercised my critical thinking skill to actively seek solutions when encountering difficulties and misunderstandings. I have more confidence in my ability to overcome the difficulties and challenges I may face in the future workplace, and I look forward to solving problems at work using the global mindset that I gained from Leeds.