Student Profiles

Department of Sociology

Craig Fletcher

“This is a university that practices what it preaches, acting to promote inclusion and social change”
About My Degree

I chose Manchester Met as I was already familiar with the university, having studied there in the past for my degree in Youth & Community Work. The staff are well respected within the wider criminological and academic fields and renowned for their critical approach. Because of this, the institution attracts a diverse range of students armed with significant life and professional experience enabling interesting perspectives to be voiced via challenging debate, which ultimately enhances the student experience. 

The course syllabus also attracted me. It prompted me to question my existing knowledge and the tutors initiated healthy debate. It encouraged me to develop a critical lens for the existing literature. For me, it has helped to underpin my practice with the necessary theory and this will help me when I am pitching new ideas to senior management, commissioners or potential funders. What separates this university from others is its drive to offer its students an opportunity to learn beyond the theory. It offers practical experiences such as the opportunity to visit a prison establishment, which for those who have not been inside the walls of a prison before, especially those that are seeking to gain employment within a penal establishment, is an invaluable experience. In addition, guest speakers who specialise in specific areas of criminology, are invited in to speak to students.

I was delivering youth crime intervention programmes before studying for this qualification. I aim to continue to work in the criminal justice field but I am now also working as a part-time lecturer at MMU on the criminology course and working for Manchester Probation Trust, opportunities that have opened up for me as a result of my studies here at MMU and the contacts that I made whilst I was there.

My career aspirations are:

  • To become a full time university lecturer and encourage critical thinking amongst students
  • To eventually study for a PhD
  • To influence policy and decision makers so that we can create a more humane, inclusive, progressive and ultimately, a more effective criminal justice system

Obtaining a Master’s degree at such a respected university enables your CV to be separated from the pile when shortlisting takes place by a potential employer. I was a confident and respected practitioner before studying on this course, but this qualification has certainly enhanced my credibility within the criminological sphere. I believe it will be a springboard to take my career to further success. As a result of my studies at MMU I feel more empowered to make a real difference.

What is your top tip for other students looking to study this course at Manchester Metropolitan University?

If you want to enhance your knowledge base whilst improving your employment prospects then this is the course for you! What do you have to lose by booking an appointment to come and speak to one of the lecturing staff?

Please complete this sentence: ‘I’m inspired by…’

People that express an elevated school of thought, and in doing so, are able to question the existing status quo which sees both state and law as operating in the interests of the rich, the powerful and the powerful and oppressive regimes that perpetuate the marginalisation of those less fortunate. I have been extremely fortunate to have been taught and mentored by, and and worked alongside such infectious people that have inspired me to challenge this status quo.

What do you love about Manchester Met?

The university really is committed to equal opportunities, offering students the opportunity to study regardless of background or difference. In my own case, Manchester Met accepted my application to study despite my being an ex-offender, whereas several other universities did not. To me, this showed that this is a university that practices what it preaches, acting to promote inclusion and social change.


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