Student Profiles

Department of English

Peter Matthews

"The English degree at Manchester Met was perfect for me"
About my career

After my A Levels I looked for an English course that gave me the opportunity to study English language, literature and creative writing. The English degree at Manchester Met was perfect for me. It covered a broad spectrum of English criticism, cultural analysis and creative writing workshops and allowed me to understand and hone my strengths.

In my third year, I took the opportunity to work with Senior Lecturer Julie Wilkinson, to stage my creative writing dissertation with Manchester Met Drama students as part of her Script-in-hand programme. It was great to see my first play performed by actors. I also did several placements and worked for Aim-Higher as a mentor. I did a two-week unpaid internship for a marketing department in Southend-on-Sea.

My first graduate role was as a Communications Officer for the Co-operative Bank. I joined the company as a call centre worker immediately after graduating and, once I had my foot in the door, was able to learn of the key competencies required to fulfil a communications position. I worked hard to find relevant experience wherever I could, including writing several articles for magazines for free.

It has been a whirlwind of job applications, interviews and experience gathering since I graduated in 2010. The writing, analysis and time-keeping skills (working to a deadline/planning etc.) that I gained from my time at Manchester Met have been the most multi-functional skills I gained. I now work for a university, and found that being immersed in campus culture for three years meant I now understand my audience so well because I was a part of it. I am currently considering undertaking a part-time master’s in marketing. I will also be taking the PRINCE2 project management course to further expand my career opportunities.

My top tip for students is…

Find out what you want to do,find out where those jobs are and what experience they look for from job applicants. Employers do want to see that you have already used your skills effectively and successfully. And keep the faith! Knockbacks are disheartening but after finally being offered a position, you will see it was all worth it. Any job worth having comes with hard work.

I’m inspired by…

Julie Wilkinson, my dissertation tutor: her feedback was invaluable. As an actively working playwright, as well as a tutor, her advice was practical and based on a lot of experience. She was rigorous in her criticism of my work and always constructive. Each workshop I attended left me feeling inspired and I feel I could not have achieved my First Class Honours without her.

Why I love Manchester Metropolitan University

Studying at Manchester Met gave me the time and opportunity to really think about things.

Student Profiles