Natalie Tuck (MSc International Business 2013)

Natalie Tuck

Why did you choose to study MSc International Business?

At the time, I was about to graduate in Journalism and I decided that I wanted to specialise in business journalism. The prospectus for the MSc International Business had a very detailed breakdown of the modules and they seemed interesting and valuable to my career. I also realised that the modules would teach me the basics of international business, which was what I wanted. Also, the course is ranked highly in the Financial Times and is accredited by lots of different bodies, which is important to me as employers look for that. 

Having studied Journalism at Undergraduate, did you find it difficult to adapt to a new discipline?

I think the teaching is very clever as it teaches you the basics and gradually eases you into international business. Then after a couple of weeks, you start to apply your knowledge practically in the seminars. Although it was daunting at first, by learning this way it helped me to absorb the theory and get used to how I should apply my knowledge to practical cases.

How does the course add to your career aspirations?

I plan to go into business journalism, so the course is vital to my career aspirations. Six months ago, I knew nothing about international business but now I can talk and write confidently about so many aspects of it. I would say to anyone considering the course that hasn’t got relevant experience, not to worry!

There is also a module called professional and research skills which prepares you for employment. All the tutors are supportive and will give you career advice if you ask for it. They know a lot of people and from my experience are very happy to put you in touch with contacts that could be helpful to your career.

What have been the challenges of working with so many different nationalities?

I think there are about seven British people out of a cohort of 125 on the course. Before coming to Leeds I had never found myself in an ethnic minority, so I was a little worried that I might not make many friends. This soon passed though, as I have probably made more friends on the International Business course than I did in three years doing my undergraduate degree.

I think working with a range of nationalities is a fantastic experience. In debates and seminars, we each have different perspectives because of our heritage and it’s really interesting. I might never find myself in a place with so many different nationalities again so I’ve embraced it.

Has the course met your expectations, so far?

Yes, it has surpassed my expectations. Before I started I didn’t really know what it was going to be like. I have learnt so much in such a little time. It covers so many areas of international business from foreign market entry methods, foreign direct investment to more specific things such as debates and controversies and economics.

I am in the first year that iPads were distributed on the course which I think has played a big part to the learning experience. Quite often in seminars, we are given about ten minutes to prepare an answer using our iPads, which we have to present to the class. We have also been assessed through video presentations which we have to record on our iPads, so they have played a big part on the course.  

It’s also worth mentioning that the Business School building itself is wonderful, it is a beautiful building and has plenty of study areas for group and silent study, so you can get on with work.

What has been the most enjoyable aspect of the course?

I think the most enjoyable aspect of my course has been getting to know people from all over the world, who I now call my friends. The programme really encourages everyone to mix and get to know each other through group work. 

For the module Cross Cultural Management we had to have a come dine with me style evening. In groups of about eight, we had to each bring a traditional dish from our own country and share it with the group. It was assessed and had to be recorded but we learnt so much about each others' cultures in a relaxed setting. It was great; we all had so much fun and had our own banquet of food from around the world.