March 6, 2013, by Malvika Johal
By John Coffield – Alumni Relations Officer- London and the South East
The Alumni Relations office runs lots of great high-profile, VIP-attended events from the Talent Roadshows that showcase various research that Impact: The Nottingham Campaign is involved in, to large receptions at the House of Lords. However, no less well-attended overall are our regular series of events such as the Careers Masterclasses. These run in Nottingham and London from February to May each year, and each one focuses on a different facet of careers skills. Previous masterclasses have included sessions on networking, CV writing, interview skills and the use of careers-based online assessment tools.
The most recent masterclass we ran – the first this year – was based on an online self-assessment tool and entitled ‘Self-Awareness: The Key To Success.’ It went down well in Nottingham (despite the snow) and it was my job to run the London event; my first as Alumni Relations Officer for London and the South-East. Our venue of choice for the London masterclasses is the University Women’s Club in Mayfair.
Within spitting distance of the Dorchester and just off Park Lane, it’s an ideally-placed ‘old-school’ private members’ club in the grand Victorian style, but with a difference: it was set up by women graduates exclusively for women who were attending or had attended a university (which of course back then were fairly few and far between).
On the 28th February myself and two colleagues who were assisting me arrived at the club and went in to start setting up for the evening’s event. Name badges were laid out, various pieces of AV tomfoolery were fiddled with, and we were ready and waiting for our guests to arrive. Soon we had a full room of 40 alumni, all chatting away happily with wine and nibbles. Then the masterclass began in earnest, led by the Acting Director for the university’s Careers and Employability Service, Jan Perrett.
Within a few minutes Jan was busy commanding the room, her highly interactive presentation style and unique powerpoints drawing occasional gales of laughter, and periods of intense chatter from the assembled alumni as they discussed their assessment results. With an excited buzz the alumni came out once the session was done to continue networking over refreshments. Everyone was very enthusiastic and positive, and mentioned that they had found the session very useful and enjoyable, and would certainly return.
On that note, registrations are climbing fast for the next London masterclass on March 27th which deals with strengths-based interviews. For further info please visit http://tiny.cc/yfajtw. Hopefully I will see some of you reading this there, and I look forward to welcoming more of you future masterclasses and other events in London and the South-East.
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