"The lecturers were extremely supportive and couldn't help me enough."
Why I chose the postgrad in PR
I chose this course (MSc in Public Relations and Strategic Communications) because it had the perfect mix of academic and professional experience. The fact that it was designed to be hybrid (in 2020) meant it was ideal for having to balance studies and family life. Having lecturers from both academic and professional backgrounds, suggested to me that I would not only be learning the theory but also what that theory meant in the workplace, from those using it.
A big sell for me, was the paid internship placement. I felt this would give me an inroad to the industry with experience and the fact that this was paid was a bonus.
My postgraduate experience with DCU
This has been an extremely positive experience. Having not studied in a university setting since 2008, I was nervous starting the course. I wasn't sure how it would work with having small children at home at the same time as studying. However, the lecturers were extremely supportive and couldn't help me enough if I needed it. The workload was intense but manageable. Time management skills are important and allowed me to organise my day in a way that worked well. In terms of the subjects, the teaching staff were always on hand to answer any questions and I could pick their brains whenever I needed it. Finally the class group was fantastic as well. We all supported each other with questions, suggestions and a bit of a laugh. Given we were in lockdown for the entire course, we managed to build a good rapport on WhatsApp and it was a really great group to work with.
My advice to incoming students
Try and organise your time well. It is an intense course and you will feel that at times, but if you have your time organised well, are focused and avail of the support of the teaching staff and students, you will be grand. Family support is also key to help you with other everyday tasks you may have.
How postgraduate this course has made a difference to me
First and foremost this course has made me more employable. I worked for myself and found that I was typical of the 'jack of all trades, master of none' phrase. Now I have specialised and my confidence has grown in my professional persona.
I also have good contacts now in an industry where I had none before and that is quite simply because of this course. DCU has opened up possibilities for me that were definitely not there before.