Graduating in International Business Communication in 2012, Christine Frey tells us that the main reason she chose to study the course was a result of her school in Germany having a partnership with UCLan. “The course was a great addition to my studies in Germany and the fact that I was able to continue to combine International Communication with Mandarin Chinese was a big plus.”
After graduating, Christine received a scholarship from UCLan and went on to study International Applied Communication. After completing that degree, she quickly landed her first job in the UK, working for a company called Trueshopping Ltd (now Limitless Digital) as a Product Assistant where one of her roles was to translate the website into German. “Following on from this I was promoted to German Account Manager, then Team Leader in a slightly different area of the business followed by a Management role with seven direct reports. What made the role great was the fact that I was dealing with cultures in various countries, including Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the US and Canada.”
Currently, Christine works as an Optimisation Manager for one of the largest national supermarket retailers, Iceland Food Ltd. “As an Optimisation Manager I am responsible for improving the online shopping experience for all visitors to our ecommerce website. One of the areas where I can apply my studies is the use of language on the website. I can also still refer to knowledge gained in the areas of business models, market research and strategic management.”
When asked about her greatest achievement since graduating, Christine’s response was: “I would say my greatest achievement since graduation is my career in the digital industry as well as after six years in the UK, fully integrating with the British culture. One of my favourite quotes is: Successfully adapting to a culture means thriving on it, not just accepting it!” She was also invited to speak at a conference for Website Optimisation in London in 2016.
Christine gives advice to anyone looking to do something similar to herself: “For anyone coming to a new country, be it the UK or a different country, take your time to experience the culture, it won’t happen overnight. University was one of the most important times in my life to develop great friendships, do not try to go through your studies yourself, you will gain so much more by mixing with people from all over the world and having an open mind for new cultural experiences.”
The impact UCLan has had on Christine is interesting, she explains why winning the election for the role of International Student Representative has helped her. “One experience in particular which has changed my life was my election to International Student Representative and winning the International Student Award by the Students’ Union. It taught me that going out and fighting for what you are passionate about can help you succeed in anything you dream of.
“UCLan was the start of my journey in the UK. I will never forget my first day in Preston with a mountain of new impressions and cultural differences. The fondest memories are around meeting people from all over the world, sharing knowledge and working towards a successful graduation.”