16 July 2015
An MA in Strategic Communication from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has helped Shirah Bamber secure a senior communications role with Preston City Council.
The 31-year-old graduated from the University this week, after completing her master’s degree through the University’s part-time blended learning offer.
Now Shirah is putting the theory into practice after taking up the role at the council, where she is responsible for all aspects of communication with a particular focus on implementing a digital communications strategy.
Shirah is originally from Canada and after completing her undergraduate study she decided to go travelling. It was on this trip that she met her now-husband in Preston and settled in the city, where she has lived for 11 years.
The couple started a family and Shirah was working part time in a marketing role for a local charity when she made the decision to study for a master’s degree to further her career.
“The biggest challenge was managing my workload against my family and work commitments, especially as I started my new job in the middle of writing my dissertation!”
Shirah said: “The course was perfect because I could continue working and take care of my two young children, who are now aged four and six. I studied over two and a half years and I feel very proud to be graduating, as well as a little bit relieved!
“My favourite thing about the course was the lecturers. They were very inspiring and motivating and had a depth of knowledge that I really admire. I also liked that there were students from all around the world on the course. It meant I got to meet some really interesting people and we could all share our professional experience.
“The biggest challenge was managing my workload against my family and work commitments, especially as I started my new job in the middle of writing my dissertation! It’s all been worth it though and I’m looking forward to applying what I’ve learnt to my new role and seeing what new opportunities might present themselves in future as a result.”
Shirah was one of 4,000 students who graduated in front of family and friends at Preston’s Guild Hall this week.