We caught up with alumnus Christian Bessell who graduated from DeMontford Univeristy this year with a first class degree. Christian studied Business and Management which included a year working in the industry.
What was your biggest achievement at university?
Setting up my own society/ sports club (DMU Karting).
What did you enjoy most about your course at the university?
Having a broad range of diverse modules which made the course engaging and enjoyable which helped to strengthen my academic knowledge. Additionally, being selected to go to China to partake in a summer school and to visit Singapore for a Formula 1 business trip. I was also chosen to race at Silverstone for my university each year in a competition called Formula Student.
I believe you did a placement year as part of your university course, can you tell us a bit about that?
The placement year concept is in itself a fantastic thing to do. It gives you hands on, real-world experience and is an excellent thing to have on your CV. I was lucky enough to work at a top global Insurance Broker firm (Jardine Lloyd Thompson) in the heart of London’s financial district. In my year at the company, I was involved with several departments within HR, each contributing to the successful operation of the business. I was given a great deal of responsibility, managing internal and external client portfolios, and assisted with a $5.4 billion acquisition transaction, of which I was extremely privileged and grateful to be a part of. The placement year has no doubt provided me with crucial and valuable skills which I hope to use to my advantage in my career.
What advice would you give to our Sixth Form students?
University is a big step up from sixth form in terms of the academic quality required, but if you work hard now and can maintain a good work ethic, you will be in good stead to be successful at university. I found that sixth form provides you with the perfect stepping stone to improve your independent study and organisation skills, which I found to be highly beneficial when managing 4-5 assignments at a time.
How did All Saints’ Academy Sixth Form help you in reaching your goals for university?
All Saints’ Academy and its teachers provided me ways in which I could develop and improve my academic knowledge alongside providing lessons that would in a way reflect university learning. Especially in my Business Studies classes at ASA, we were constantly working on case studies and large coursework modules which is what the majority of my university studies consisted of. All Saints’ also provided many opportunities that encouraged personal development, most notably my volunteering trip to Africa.
What were your highlights at All Saints’ Sixth Form?
There are many! I had a wonderful time at ASA. Some of the highlights include volunteering in Africa, going on trips within my Media Studies class, setting up Go-Karting socials, competing in a national karting championship while representing ASA, visiting the Houses of Parliament and of course Year 13 Prom!
What are you hoping to do now you have graduated?
The plan is to either return to the company that I had my placement year at, or to obtain a graduate-scheme role within London. For now though, I’m treating myself to a well-earned break.