The basics
THE UK: Career Prospects

Q&A with Nada Giuffrida, PR Specialist and NTU alumni

Nada Giuffrida from Italy won a scholarship to study European Business Studies at Nottingham Trent University. She now works at a digital marketing agency in the UK as a PR specialist.

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What did you study and where?

I studied for a Public Relations degree and graduated at Accademia di Comunicazione, in Milan, Italy in 1991. After that, I won a scholarship to study European Business Studies at Nottingham Trent University. In Italy we were taught that the UK is the best in Europe for PR, and the best in the world in fact, after the US. My tutors encouraged me to complete the scholarship so that I could put it on my CV and have a better chance of getting a job in Italy. Instead, I never went back! I decided to pursue my PR career in the UK.

How do you think the skills you gained studying abroad have helped shape your career?

Studying abroad has given me a sense of business internationalism and business etiquette that you can only achieve by living, studying, working and breathing another country and culture. I learnt to replicate the British way of doing business to my advantage and to further my own marketing skills when doing business or networking.


Did your university offer any work experience or career guidance?

Yes, they did. The University in Milan offered me the greatest gift of all, a scholarship to Nottingham Trent University! NTU also then organised a work placement for me to attend weekly at a local PR Agency which was a great experience. 


Did your university offer you support as an international student?

Absolutely. In fact, decades later, we are still in touch and as I am part of their alumni network, helping prospective and current students by telling them about my experience. 


What advice do you have for international students interested in studying PR/marketing?

  • Seek a long term work placement at either an in-house or agency role. It doesn’t matter if it’s not paid. You need to add anything ‘practical’ to your CV. The better variety of work you can get exposed to, the better job you will be doing.
  • Use social media to your advantage such as starting a blog to show off your journalistic skills.
  • Volunteer for charity regional events to show your initiative and marketing abilities. 
  • Find yourself a good mentor, perhaps somebody who is working in the same industry you’d like to pursue. Ask questions, be curious about events and the sector in general. Use your mentor to practice interview role plays.
  • Be humble and accept any constructive feedback you may receive from business people who know better and much more than you do when you first enter a job. 


What are your top tips for being successful in the working world?

Keeping abreast of current affairs is very important. Try and be positive but not over-powering. Bring out your inner confidence and learn to polish your networking skills. Over the years, these will become more prominent. Communications skills are extremely important in any role you wish to enter. Diplomacy and team work are also something that you need to work on - these skills open doors and will ultimately make you more successful.


Check out Nada's blog post here and find the perfect PR course here

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About Author

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Katie Duncan is Editor of Hotcourses Abroad and is an NCTJ-qualified journalist and University of Exeter graduate. Having worked at an English language school in the UK, as an educational consultant in Spain and as a reporter in the international education sector, she is well placed to guide you through your study abroad journey. Katie grew up in Australia, which perhaps explains her unusual reptile collection, comprising of a bearded dragon (Bill) and tortoise (Matilda).