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Student View - 'Creativity is Intelligence Having Fun.’

by YPU Admin on June 12, 2020, Comments. Tags: AMBS, business, creativity, enterprise, HUM, Humanities, HUMS, and student view

Introduction

Hi, I’m Sabah. I am a 23-year-old postgraduate university student studying a Master of Enterprise with a passion for innovation and creativity. My Masters has expressed a whole other side of creativity and exhibited how creativity is not simply limited to arts and crafts. This blog piece will present 10 different ways on being creative especially considering current times and how you can combat a lack of creativity in your everyday life.

My Top Tips for Being Creative:

Building a creative atmosphere:

Often we find ourselves stuck in a space that limits our creativity, the slightest changes could make the biggest difference. Such as arranging décor and colours to match who you are and what you need, lighting candles or playing music that inspires you in order to build the best possible atmosphere.

Put down your device:

A tricky thing to do especially now but that feeling when you don’t have to be dependent on your phone or laptop providing a source of creativity is freeing! Going on walks, getting ideas down to paper and having a chat with those in your proximity will get your creative juices flowing without you even realising.  

Inspire yourself:

Whether that be music, family/friends or even listening to a stimulating podcast, never feel like there are ever any limits as to what can inspire you.

Limit and stand clear of distractions:

This isn’t to say watching Netflix and scrolling through Tik Tok to lift your mood slightly and distract yourself should be completely avoided, as sometimes it’s necessary, however too much of anything can make you sick and one must definitely put a limit on activities that don’t really benefit your mind and development in any way.

Enjoy being bored: 

Sometimes being bored is a blessing as it allows you to experiment with various methods of creativity, thus you can then understand what you’re good at and what you enjoy.

Stay healthy, stay happy: 

Know that you, your health and mental health should always come first. This will not only allow you to give time to yourself but will allow your mind and body to be energised and developed so that it’s quick in thinking of new ideas.

Generate more ideas than you think you need:

It is always important to have a lot of ideas so that, when in front of you, you can work through them and see what works. This could also be a way to combine two and formulate better, stronger ideas.

Look in unlikely places:

Don’t ever underestimate anything, an idea, a person, a place. Sometimes the unlikeliest of places may be carrying the hidden gem you needed to succeed.

Finish what you’ve started:

Another way of saying never give up, but it is important to see things through and not leave a task half done as it may not seem to be worth your time. You may be surprised of the benefits and feeling so satisfaction it can bring to you once done.

Love what you do!:

Whatever way you decide to be more creative, the passion and love for that creativity will always be your motivation, your reason for never giving up and inspiration to not make creative tasks feel like work.

Going Further...

May this blog piece bring the creativity to the minds of the readers and allow you to challenge yourself every day and come up with the thousand different routes to reach that one important destination. 

If you want to find out more about Business at Manchester, please visit https://www.alliancembs.manchester.ac.uk/ !


 

Student View - Why Business?

by YPU Admin on June 10, 2020, Comments. Tags: AMBS, business, Economics, finance, HUM, Humanities, HUMS, international business, and student view

Introduction

Hi, my name is Shamaila and I am a first-year student at the University of Manchester, currently studying International Business, Finance and Economics (IBFE). I chose this degree course after having studied A-level Economics and Business Studies in college and fell in love with the subjects, so much so that I decided to study it further at university. Luckily for me, I knew that I always wanted to go to university but the hard part was deciding which one was the right one for me. 

Choosing a University

To anyone that is considering university and being bombarded by information, I highly recommend attending as many open days and fairs (even if they’re virtual) as possible. I'm pretty sure I attended at least half a dozen open days before choosing Manchester. When it comes to picking a university, whether they offer a degree programme that you are interested in, is very important, but just as important is whether you can envision yourself there. The environment, the people, the culture of that campus has got to excite you and make you feel welcomed. I remember quite vividly my open day for the University of Manchester because I was running very, very late (if you know me in person, you’d know that I hate being late) and so by the time I got onto campus, I was wandering around aimlessly, but I remember thinking how stunning the campus was and I felt genuinely comfortable. Normally, I would find it quite daunting being in a new environment especially somewhere like a busy campus but seeing the AMBS building, the Main Library and the SU building (where I spend 70% of my time now), on my campus tour I could see myself here. 

Why I Chose Business

I chose my degree course as I was interested in the business sector, but I didn't have a dream job that I could aspire towards. This led me to choose IBFE, as it enabled me to cover a range of content. I was able to continue studying business and economics and gain a whole new set of skills in finance. For a lot of people, including myself at one point, if you studied a business- based degree, it was because you wanted to start your own business. But I quickly realised that there is so much more to the business sector. Often the words, finance, business and economics are used interchangeably which is understandable as there is some crossover between the three subjects, but they are also completely separate from each other. In my economic modules, we assess ever-changing economic contexts and debate different theories. In my finance modules, we produce and analyse financial reports, with the mindset of maximising shareholder profits as accountants whereas in business we aim to view the company with a more board stakeholder outlook and study various topics, such as corporate social responsibility.

Another feature of my degree programme is that it offers an industrial placement year, which basically means I am able to work in a company that I am interested in, during my 3rd year. This is something that I am very excited about, as even though the content we have learnt in class is important, I think being able to apply that knowledge and see the mechanisms of the real world and how companies operate is more important. Currently, I am aspiring to go into the accounting sector and work my way up to becoming a chartered accountant. This is something that I had never even considered before, with no previous background in accounting but I realised through some of the modules I have taken this year, such as Financial Reporting and Financial Decision Making, I really enjoy creating and analysing business reports. As a result, I am currently applying for internships at firms such as Deloitte, Grant Thornton, KPMG, and EY. 

Going Further...

To anyone right now, that is struggling to find a career that interests them, my advice would be to not panic. A lot of people do degrees in subjects that they know they like and are good at, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they have to go into that field. Especially now more than ever with the amount of information available on the internet it is much easier to develop a wide range of skills that are suitable for a variety of jobs rather than just focusing on one career pathway. 

If you are interested in anything that I have talked about, below are some links for further information:

 

Wait a minute - that doesn't sound like business?!

by YPU Admin on January 24, 2020, Comments. Tags: AMBS, business, marketing, Mental Health, PhD, psychology, and university

Introduction

Hey everyone! I’m Charlotte and I’m a 1st year PhD student currently studying at Alliance Manchester Business School at the University of Manchester. My current research is focused on student mental health and help-seeking behaviours.

“Wait a minute”, I hear you say, “that doesn’t sound like business”.

And at first glance it doesn’t. I’ve had many questioning looks when I tell people I’m a marketing student studying student mental health, but that’s one of the best things about my PhD. I get to combine my passion for understanding and improving mental health with my interests in marketing and consumer behaviour.

So, sit back and I’ll tell you all.


In-depth

Before starting my PhD I studied for my undergraduate degree in Psychology and a master’s degree in Marketing. At first you might think Psychology and Marketing don’t really go together, but I’ve always been interested in why we think and behave in particular ways, and that’s exactly what Marketers try to do.

After my master’s degree I worked for 2 years at a digital marketing agency just outside of Manchester managing the day-to-day marketing activities of my clients including; branding, design for digital or print promotions, advertisements, copywriting and campaign management. As much as I enjoyed working in marketing, after a couple of years I could hear university calling my name once more. So, I applied for my PhD and the rest, as they say, is history!

But what exactly do I do?

Mental health has been studied extensively, with particular focus in areas such as health, psychology and sociology. Approaching student mental health from a marketing perspective, my research aims to better understand the motivations and decision making processes that encourage individuals to seek help for their mental health problems - or indeed why certain people avoid seeking help. By understanding these decisions better, I hope that my research can have an impact in improving the provision of university support services (and the promotion of these services) to facilitate help-seeking behaviour.

As I’m only in my first year, my work mainly involves developing my research skills and reading more about the different perspectives and disciplines researching student mental health. As a qualitative researcher, with an interest in behaviour, I’ve never been convinced by statistics alone. I’m much more interested in how individual’s create meaning as part of their experiences. Qualitative research allows me to gain a richer interpretation of experiences and behaviours, and how people interpret these behaviours. One of the best things about studying for my PhD is that as I read and learn more about my topic, my research questions change and develop.

At University, for both my undergraduate and master’s degree, the biggest challenge for me was always trying to work out what I wanted to do at the end of it. Now, studying for my PhD I hope to continue researching and stay in academia to teach the marketers and researchers of the future. It hasn’t been a straight road, but then your career doesn’t have to be - find something you enjoy learning about and career ideas start to fall into place (even if you don’t realise it at first)!

A bit further...

If you’re interested in finding out more about careers in Psychology, visit: https://www.bps.org.uk

For more information on careers in Marketing, visit: https://www.cim.co.uk

If you’d like to find out more about the courses on offer at the University of Manchester, you can visit the links here:

Psychology: https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/study/psychology/

Business and Marketing: https://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/2020/03528/bsc-management-marketing/

The book that started to bridge the gap between Psychology and Marketing for me was Robert Cialdini’s ‘Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion’ https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/Influence.html?id=5dfv0HJ1TEoC

The Drum is a website dedicated to looking at the latest trends and news in the Marketing industry. You can take a look around the website here: https://www.thedrum.com

Or if you want to know more about the current research taking place across the UK focussing on Student Mental Health, King’s College London (KCL) created a research network called SMaRteN dedicated to improving understanding of student mental health in higher education. You can visit the website here:

https://www.smarten.org.uk

 

Researching the Squishyness of Foam

by YPU Admin on December 25, 2014, Comments. Tags: algorithms, applied, business, computer, cycling, finance, foam, helmets, industry, maths, model, patentlaw, pressure, and syntactic

Introduction

My name is Maria Thorpe and it's now only 10 months until I have to submit my thesis for a PhD in applied maths.


My route to a PhD

I moved up to Manchester 7 years ago really excited to be going to university and studying for an undergrad masters in maths for the next 4 years. I loved every minute of my undergrad, but by the beginning on the fourth year still didn't really know what type of job I wanted when I finished. I was still enjoying my subject and I'd really enjoyed a research project I'd been sponsored to complete over the summer between third and fourth year, so I decided to apply for a PhD on a similar topic in applied maths. 


In Depth

Since then I've been trying to mathematically model the way in which a specific type of composite squashes under pressure. I work with a material similar to syntactic foam, similar to the  sort of foam cycling helmets are made from, however instead of creating small cavities within the material by injecting air into it, tiny hollow balls (called shells) are mixed into the foam before it sets, forming a composite. These micro shells are created from very stiff, glass-like materials and help stiffen the material under low pressures, but under high pressures they crumple like a coke can. I want to understand whether having shells close to each other changes the way the composite reacts to pressure: do the shells reinforce each other and allow the material to withstand higher pressures? Or do they have the opposite effect and cause the composite to squash more than if they were far apart?

The company sponsoring my research wants to understand how their material works so that they know how to improve it. It would take too long to try out all the different ways the shells could be mixed into the foam, and might involve buying new machinery, so it makes sense to model the material instead. Creating a very flexible model means that the same model can be used for many different applications, so I try to model the material theoretically, by extending the models previous generations of mathematicians have created. This means that most days are spent making very small steps forward with my research, but when a whole section comes together it can be really rewarding.

Aside from working on my thesis my PhD has enabled me to travel to some really great places: I spent a month in New Zealand with a company having a go at the more experimental side to my research; I've traveled to conferences all across Europe; and I've spent three months working in parliament to learn how science influences policy.

Moreover these last three years have allowed me to discover all the ways maths is used in industry and business, from patent law and government policy to computer algorithms and financial trading, so that this time round, when it comes to looking for post PhD careers, I have a much clearer idea of where I could go from here.


Going Further

If you'd like to read more about my research and that of the group I work with, the waves in complex continua group, check out our webpage:

http://wiccwavesgroup.weebly.com

There’s also an interesting article on the use of syntactic foams for deep sea exploration here:

http://news.yahoo.com/finding-strength-reach-oceans-furthest-depths-225937623.html