Darren Waldron

Country of origin: United Kingdom

People Policy Specialist, Marks & Spencer

I chose the BBA programme because of the flexibility it allows in choosing your own modules and provides the opportunity to undertake a year on placement with a real focus on graduate-level work. LUMS ensures that all placements sufficiently provide not just a place to work, but a placement that will challenge and develop the students.

Although I never saw myself as an economist or accountant, the core first-year modules offered an insight into the basics of these subjects, whilst teaching important life skills that would especially become important during the placement year, such as presentation and teamworking skills.

The second-year and final-year modules offer much more flexibility, and allowed me to focus on the subjects that interested me such as marketing and project management. LUMS offers an impressive range of modules, and also allowed me to continue my interest in law by undertaking law modules away from the Management School.

Modules such as Consulting, Airline Simulation and Negotiation and Decision Support enabled me to take part in an interactive learning process, putting our learning into practice as a group in real-life situations. These interactive modules are the ones that really stand out as placing LUMS above the rest for me, as they allowed an insight into the world of work.

By following the graduate recruitment process in my second year, I was accepted on to the placement scheme at Marks & Spencer for my third year. This was an exciting and challenging experience, working towards becoming a Commercial Manager and having real responsibility for large sales targets and line-managing other managers in the business.

I was also grateful for the placement opportunity, as I was able to secure a graduate job with M&S before returning to Lancaster for my final year. This allowed me to focus on my studies without the pressure of searching for a graduate job.

My four years at Lancaster have offered endless opportunities, allowing me to develop on both a personal and professional level. From the core modules offering important basic skills, to the opportunity of a placement and the chance to put all of our learning into practice with interactive fourth-year modules – LUMS has offered the best university experience I could ever have hoped for.