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Niki believes it’s important to have a plan, but to be open to new opportunities

Find more student stories

Niki believes it’s important to have a plan, but to be open to new opportunities

From finding her dream job, to travelling the world and meeting her husband to be, Niki Lancaster’s university experience was life-changing.

Attracted by the range of media courses on offer, Niki also loved the feel of life on campus.

“It had the feeling of being big but not too big,” she said, “and everyone was really friendly and helpful during those early days of exploring opportunities. Cheltenham was a very welcoming place, with a safe and friendly atmosphere. The community that the university creates really helps people build lasting relationships with other students.”

Niki studied Professional Writing and Media, graduating in 2008, and wrote regularly for the Student Unions’ newspaper. She then took up a year-long sabbatical role to edit the newspaper and help with the Student Unions’ marketing from 2008 to 2009.

“During this time, I saved up and planned a year long trip around the world with my best friend, who I met at university. While on the trip I did some freelance design, and met my husband to be.”

During lectures on how the internet was impacting the media, Niki realised that whatever she did when she finished her course, she wanted to carve out a digital career.

On returning to the UK they settled in Leeds and Niki started working for a digital marketing agency. “I was lucky to work for a company that fully embraced change, so I began building a department around social media. I’m now about to go into a new role as Head of Creative at Search Laboratory, a role that will require all the skills I learnt at the University of Gloucestershire.”

She found that the modular scheme gave her the autonomy to help her create her own path, and pick a mix of skills to suit her and her career plans. And she believes it’s important to current students, and people considering university, to have a plan, but also be open to new opportunities.

“It’s helpful to know the field you want to get into and university can help to ensure you define that path, and wherever you can, take advantage of extracurricular opportunities to put your skills into practice.”