Portrait photograph of: Serhan Kale

Serhan Kale

Country Of Origin: Cyprus

Degree: MSc ITMOC, 2015

Data Analyst, Travelport

If you are a student or want to be student again after long years of study, there are two things that you must be looking for. A good education in a top university, which can give you a taste of professional life with industry experienced lecturers, and also a good social environment with lots of interacting activities and enthusiastic people around you. You do not have to trade off or sacrifice a preference if you choose the MSc Information, Technology, Management and Organisational Change programme as you can experience them together. That is how university education has been taken to the next level with MSc ITMOC. It is also the main reason why I chose to study at Lancaster University and I can assure you that it is one of the best decisions I have ever made. 

I joined the MSc ITMOC programme in October 2014, straight after the completion of my Bachelor`s Degree in Business and Management. Prior to MSc ITMOC, I was not feeling very confident of the extent to which my Bachelor`s contributed to my development. It felt like I was filled up with countless data but not actually with the information and intelligence necessary to move on. MSc ITMOC provided me an opportunity to turn such data from my Bachelor’s Degree in Business and Management into intelligence on three dimensions; management, technology and change, which are what I feel many 21st century organisations are all about.

As soon as I joined the MSc ITMOC programme, I realised how it has been designed around a two-way learning experience. In contrast to mainstream education system where the lecturer gives nonstop lectures without interruptions from students, the MSc ITMOC programme is formed of open-minded lecturers, which allows them to also learn from their students. To meet such experienced and knowledgeable people, interested in what experience and knowledge I had, made me feel more valuable and confident about my knowledge and this allowed me to believe in my capabilities for the future. MSc ITMOC is where the creativeness of fresh minds integrates with years of experience both from lecturers, who spent many years in industry, and also students who decide to study MSc ITMOC after working in a range of industries.

MSc ITMOC has also provided me with the opportunity to dive into a practitioners` world, which is something that I wouldn’t have gained experience of in another university. There are many seminars and workshops going on throughout the year that are hosted by well-known companies, such as IBM, Accenture, Microsoft, PWC, HP and SAP. After finding one of IBM`s workshops very interesting, I decided to look for an internship with them that would run parallel to my dissertation. During that period, I developed my knowledge on cloud computing and its impacts on human resources, submitting a white paper for IBM and also interviewed many senior practitioners to collect data, which is a skill needed by consultants.  It actually made me feel I was managing a big project, rather than a piece of work, that employers count as a remarkable experience and makes me stand out from other graduates. The most important point is that the programme’s company network allows everyone to do a research internship if they are determined to do so.

The Lancaster University campus and the MSc ITMOC programme have a family-like environment that allowed me to quickly adapt and not suffer too much from homesickness. There was always someone to help when I had problem, both academically and personally. I made friends both in the lectures and outside of study, and we are all still friends today. I still attend seminars and workshops together with MSc ITMOC and I also receive invitations to join them for events. It still feels like I am a part of the community.

Within a year, Lancaster University and MSc ITMOC provided me with the majority of my employability skills, which are necessary to be part of a company. I am currently working as a Data Analyst at Travelport, inspecting, cleansing, transforming, and modelling data in different systems. MSc ITMOC provided me with many skills that make internal training in the workplace much easier. Employers find this attractive since they find it more efficient to develop on a skill set. MSc ITMOC definitely returns the investment on education!