Grateful graduate Rachel Renardson has revealed how her experiences at Liverpool Hope University helped her land a lucrative job in marketing.
Combined honours student Rachel studied Marketing alongside Film & Visual Culture during her time at Hope, graduating in 2018.
Rachel has gone on to secure a highly sought-after role as Digital and Social Media Marketing Coordinator for Kew Green Hotels, one of the UK’s leading hotel management companies.
Crucially, the 23-year-old says Hope was able to give her vital industry experience, helping her to bridge the gap between theory and application.
And having been equipped with the right skills, she’s flourishing.
Rachel, from Sheffield, reveals: “As well as arranging work experience placements, the tutors at Hope were really keen for us to get out of the classroom and see real work in action.
“We spoke with a visual merchandising specialist at Marks & Spencer, we visited a marketing agency in Liverpool’s ‘Baltic Triangle’ creative and digital quarter, and saw first hand how they work.
“And this is what sticks in my mind about Hope - the external experiences we were given, and realising that however much knowledge you gain from University, industry experience provides a means to adapt that knowledge and put what you’ve learned into practice.”
Kew Green Hotels own and operate around 50 hotels across the UK - including the Crowne Plaza at Liverpool John Lennon Airport, Speke.
It’s here, thanks to an initial introduction through Hope, where Rachel gained valuable experience before ultimately being offered a full-time role at Crowne Plaza’s management company.
Rachel’s role is highly varied and continually challenging.
She adds: “There’s a lot of hotels in the portfolio who all have individual marketing needs.
“There really is always something different going on every day, and it’s a brilliant role in that respect. I really enjoy it.
“My work might involve highlighting leisure clubs that have just reopened, or designing collateral to go in the hotels themselves - such as posters and external banners.
“This industry is also extremely competitive, so I’m really grateful for the career I’m enjoying.
“And if I could give one piece of advice to anyone studying at Hope right now, I’d tell them to grab any opportunities you’re given.
“It’s so important to gain that industry experience.”
A real spanner in the works for Rachel has been the Coronavirus pandemic, which forced hotels to temporarily close their doors.
Rachel, however, says having lived through that challenge she’s better equipped to cope with other periods of uncertainty in the future.
She adds: “Covid-19 meant having to adapt very quickly to strange circumstances, to say the least.
“When the Government first announced the lockdown our workload went from zero to a hundred in the space of an hour! You have to learn how to keep up with the pace and also learn how to adapt.
“It was challenging. But I hope to be able to draw on this experience going forwards.”
Dr Clay Gransden, Senior Lecturer in Marketing at Hope, said Rachel’s was one of many success stories enjoyed by the department.
He added: “We understand the importance of blending studies with industry experience.
“This is one of the reasons we run live business improvement projects and group placements with companies.
“Rachel is one of many success stories from our industry contacts - we aim to produce many more.
For more details about studying Marketing at Hope, click here.