Deciding where to study your postgraduate degree can be a difficult decision. There are many reasons as to why continuing at Salford could be the right choice for you.

While studying for his BA (Hons) in Journalism (Multimedia) at Salford, James Sumner found a passion for public relations and decided to stay with us for his Master’s in Public Relations and Digital Communications. Today he’s sharing some of his reasons for taking on a postgraduate degree at Salford.

“Doing a postgraduate course is one of the best decisions I’ve made. There’s no way I would have been able to secure my new role as a Communications Officer at The Cabinet Office without the confidence and skills I developed over the course of my Master’s degree.

After I completed my undergraduate degree, I wondered if I should stay at Salford or whether I should study somewhere else and explore a new city. After attending a postgraduate open day, I was won over by the course and the passion of the lecturers. Then I found out that I was entitled to a 20% loyalty discount for continuing my studies at Salford, I jumped on it immediately.

Lecturers Debbie Manely & Michelle Eagleton visiting placement partner The Royal Northern College of Music.

Building Up Your Skills

With a much more in-depth lesson plan, I managed to develop all the skills I had learned during my Bachelor’s degree to an even higher level.

We were encouraged to work with real clients on real projects. This gave me the work experience I needed and I was able to put them to my CV. I was even nominated for two PR awards at the Journalism Awards 2020 for the work I did with my clients and their organisations.

Supportive Lecturers

The lecturers were an amazing support network. There were three lecturers on my course, and they were all there for us anytime we needed a helping hand. They went well above and beyond for all the students.

During the Covid-19 pandemic my tutor was super hands-on, having regular weekly meetings to check on my well-being, making sure I was able to progress despite the trying circumstances. She helped me work around the limitations of being trapped at home, and even see them as an opportunity, pushing me to speak with experts normally far outside my reach. It’s thanks to all this support that I managed to achieve my Distinction despite Covid-19 and working part-time with three different jobs.

Getting Out In The Industry

There was a greater focus on work placements, which was a real benefit. I was able to work with reputable institutions such as The Royal Northern College of Music, SKV Communications along with clients like the Department for Education and Siemens. This working with external partners, and being expected to make valuable contributions to their organisations, really boosted my confidence and my abilities.

The University itself has loads of opportunities for work in loads of different areas. I worked part-time in the University’s marketing and external relations department, doing social media and event support at graduations and open days. I’ve loved every minute of it. It really brought me out of my shell during my course and helped me step up to take on bigger challenges.

This increased responsibility, along with more emphasis on placements, I think directly led to my successful interview for my new graduate job.

From press releases and building tours to even mascot duty!

Flexible Learning

Although I was a full-time student, plenty of my coursemates were studying part-time alongside their jobs or parental responsibilities. It was a very supportive environment for us all.

The real mix of people made for a great melting pot of ideas. Some had come from related courses like me, doing media or journalism at various universities, but others had come from quite different specialities like film studies or music. This was a real asset because we could pool our backgrounds and ideas and come up with some really interesting group projects.

Having Fun!

The most important part of doing a postgraduate course is that it was so much fun!

With a much smaller group, we became tight-knit within days. From nights out, theatre visits and podcasts, I got up to all sorts of fun both in and outside the course. I probably joined more societies and events than I did as an undergraduate. This made it a real highpoint for my life so far, being able to have a great job, a great degree and some really good experiences throughout my masters at Salford. Who knows, I might still end up coming back for a PhD in a few years time!”

I’m currently waiting for my 2021 Masters Graduation

If you are considering taking a postgraduate course you can find all the information you might need here.

Or if you’d rather speak to some of our staff and students then make sure to keep your eyes peeled for our regular open days, which you can find more about here!