Kate Jamieson – BSc (Hons) International Relations graduate

Current employer: Ship Security International Ltd.

Current job title: Operations Manager

Current location: Hampshire

“Make as much of your time at university as you can. Get involved with societies and try to find something that differentiates you from other graduates.”

Tell us about your career path since graduation.

After graduating I was offered a position with Majestic Wine as a Trainee Manager, but my focus was always on the maritime sector. I wrote my dissertation on maritime security, and tried to tailor as many of my essays as possible to this topic as I have always held an interest. This helped me to forge the career I have now. I have been working in the private maritime security industry for two years now.

Has your career path changed since graduation?

Yes, I initially took a job with Majestic Wine as I did not want to start graduate life by being unemployed. I really enjoyed the experience on their graduate scheme, but it wasn’t what I wanted to do in the long run. I am now working in a career of my choice, starting out as a logistics and office manager and have been promoted to operations manager within two years.

What is the most difficult thing which you have faced in your career?

I think learning to manage and train junior employees was the most difficult, purely because I didn’t have much experience doing this. I had taught and managed younger people when I was in the Sea Cadet Corps before going to university, but not adults.

What is the best, most exciting or fun thing that you have done in your career?

I think the most fun experience was going to meet one of our clients on his tanker at Fawley Refinery. It was really interesting to look around one of the ships we put teams on.

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to get in to the same line of work?

I know it’s quite a small area to break into but you’ll have a good chance of making it if you have a genuine interest in the job role, have a good knowledge about shipping and the maritime sector, and a good knowledge about the current threats of piracy.

How did studying at Plymouth help you?

I tailored most of my essays – my entire dissertation, in fact – to the career I wanted because I knew I would need something which would allow me to stand out from all of the other graduates with the same degree and grade. As well as this, I was a member and then President of the United Nations Association. After university, I went on to become a member of the national UNA UK Youth Council and am now on the UNA UK Procedure Committee.

Would you recommend undertaking a course with Plymouth University, and why?

I loved Plymouth; being so close to the sea was perfect, it’s an amazing city in which to study, and there’s so much going on. The University is all in one central location and so is the nightlife. Hopefully, I’ll be undertaking a part-time masters degree at Plymouth in two years’ time.

Is there anything else which you would like to share with our current students?

Make as much of your time at university as you can. Get involved with societies and try to find something that differentiates you from other graduates.

Inspired by this story?

For more information about our range of international relations courses within the School of Law, Criminology and Government, please visit the school page.

Want to find similar alumni?

If you would like to find out what other relevant alumni are currently doing, please visit the business, law, logistics and management interest area.