Simon Maples Graduate Profile

"After having a fantastic student experience at the University of Plymouth studying the BSc (Hons) Business Management fast track degree, I began to consider studying for a postgraduate programme. This would make me stand out from any competition for jobs and I could complete it in the time that other people were completing their usual undergraduate degree, as my business management course lasted two years. Plus it meant an extra year in the beautiful South West. 

The MSc Tourism and Hospitality Management programme immediately appealed, as it was the most closely linked to the area of work that I wished to go into. I applied and instantly enjoyed the opportunity to combine theoretical understanding of tourism and hospitality issues and their management, with practical methods of analysis. This enabled me to acquire an understanding of the policies, strategies and leadership aspects required of the international tourism and hospitality industry, and I also learnt to assess my own self-development, alongside team leadership and presentation skills. I graduated with a Merit grade and was honoured to win the ‘Best Postgraduate Student’ award from the Association for Tourism in Higher Education

Upon graduation, I was able to walk straight into my dream job, working for the UK’s largest theatre company as Front of House Manager for one of their flagship venues - which included a 1300-seat theatre, a 228-seat theatre and a six-screen cinema. I believe that possessing both an undergraduate and postgraduate degree made me stand out from other candidates and I was able to apply elements that I had learnt at the University whilst in post. After a year in this position, I was promoted to a new role in the group’s head office to lead their new customer experience training programme nationwide. This has enabled me to build on my learning in my previous role and University, as well as the opportunity to pass on my passion for the customer experience to colleagues across the country.

One thing that has always stood with me is when my grandad once said to me, “If you find a job you love, you’ll never have to work”. I now know exactly what he meant and feel that I owe a large amount to the University of Plymouth for helping me achieve all that I have."