There are many reasons why you should study marketing but for recent graduate, Kim Bracken, the element she loved most was the practical approach to learning new skills and executing exciting ideas.
Having enjoyed her undergraduate studies with the BA (Honours) in Marketing Practice, she progressed to the next level and recently graduated from the MSc in Marketing and now works for a global beverage company. She shares her education and career journey with us, along with her advice for anyone who may be thinking about studying marketing in the future.
1. Why did you choose to study marketing at NCI at both undergraduate and postgraduate level?
When I finished my Leaving Cert in 2018, I wasn’t sure what type of career I wanted to peruse. Having not met the course points for a particular career path, I chose to study a PLC in Digital Marketing at Ballsbridge College. That year opened my mind up to the world of business and marketing. Having completed the year in Ballsbridge, I knew that I wanted to progress my education in the marketing field. I came across an advertisement for a Level 8 Marketing Degree at NCI and decided to continue my higher education journey here.
3 years later with another degree to my name, I thought I could do one more to get that extra qualification and finish with a master’s degree in marketing at NCI. My entire 4 years in NCI taught me invaluable skills and knowledge, not to mention teaching me more about myself.
2. Can you share some insights into studying marketing at NCI?
Studying marketing at NCI allows you to see first-hand how businesses work and the impact that marketing has in real life. My favourite thing about NCI was how it was not always a theory-based approach to lectures but a practical and hands-on approach. Completing my Capstone Project in my final year of my undergrad studies taught me how to use tools such as Shopify, Trello, Canva and more - which has been very impactful on my CV.
"I enjoyed every moment at NCI! The help and support from my lectures was of the highest standard."
Working with groups is a major part of many businesses which is why I enjoyed engaging in lots of group work during the year and executing group ideas to see projects come to life.
The course was challenging at times but it was definitely rewarding. Learning about other aspects of business allowed me to expand my interests into other functions such as accounting, management, economics, digital technology and consumer behaviour.
3. What skills and abilities did you develop?
I learned a lot of transferable skills that I use in my current role. Teamwork and communication are my top 2 skills that I developed over my years at NCI. It’s important in my role to be able to work well in a team and to build relationships with customers. Communication enables my selling skills and abilities to come more naturally to me.
My leadership, public speaking and relationship building abilities grew over my 4 years at NCI. I have so much more confidence in work when I meet with customers and speak in meetings.
This is a result of the types of group and individual work we did throughout the years, along with presentations and sharing ideas in class. It’s great to put yourself out there and feel confident in your work and be able to present it to your peers and eventually being able to present to colleagues and customers.
4. Tell us about your career journey to date.
Since graduating in May 2023, I have been working as a business development representative at a global beverage company. Since June, I have been using the skills and abilities that I learned at NCI to help me progress and learn on the job. I have been really enjoying my role in the company and aim to pursue a marketing role in the company in the future.
Since I started working in the company, I have been executing marketing campaigns from a sales perspective. My favourite was the latest Christmas campaign that ran during December. It was exciting to see the marketing plan and execution strategy come to life. I’m looking forward to future campaigns that will be happening through 2024!
Meeting new people has been my favourite part of the role. Every day is unique and there is always something exciting happening. As I work in field sales, I get to see a lot of Dublin and occasionally travel in other counties for work.
5. What advice would you give to someone thinking about studying marketing at NCI?
My advice would be to stick through the challenging times and know that the course is very rewarding and a great way to learn about the world of business and learn about yourself.
Keeping on top of the workload will make finishing projects more enjoyable and less stressful. The lecturers were one of my biggest supports so were available to discuss any challenges I had and problems were always sorted quickly.
"Keep an open mind and be curious about new modules that you would not have considered studying before, I found some of those modules to be my favourites in the end."
Most importantly enjoy the course as the time goes by so quickly as it’s quite a fast-paced course. There are plenty of moments and projects you can be guaranteed to look forward to! I’d recommend both the undergraduate and postgraduate marketing courses to anyone who is curious about business and who wants to follow marketing as a career path!
Kim Bracken studied the BA (Honours) in Marketing Practice and continued on to the MSc in Marketing at National College of Ireland. See all of the marketing courses available at NCI to explore your options.