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Strathclyde Business School

Pursue your passion, says Sir Tom Hunter

By Strathclyde Business School + - Posted on 25 October 2014

Serial entrepreneur and philanthropist, Sir Tom Hunter, knows a thing or two when it comes to building a successful career, which began with an excellent experience as an undergraduate. Here, he offers advice for freshers embarking on their academic studies. We explore his tips, and share some of our own too.

Pursue your passion – Tom emphasises the importance of pursuing your passion in life.  Presumably you’ll make a career out of your studies at University, or at least in a field not too distantly related from them.  Bearing that in mind, it’s a good idea to study something you’re truly interested in.  Motivation will come a lot easier if you enjoy your subject when it comes to writing essays, and in the near future, dissertations.  At the Business School you will be offered the chance each semester to select your subject from a range of modules.  If you’re not sure what your passion is yet, explore different subjects in your first year.  Find out where your interests lie and you can concentrate on these areas throughout your time at university, giving you the practical and academic skills to build a successful career.

Change direction – You don’t have to stick to something if it’s not working out.  If you’ve given a subject a chance and you’re finding yourself dreading lectures, don’t suffer in silence.  Speak to your adviser about your options.  There is a diverse range of subjects within the Business School and you’re bound to find something that captivates your interests.

Network – Formal networking is a core part of building a successful business.  However, a crucial part of your undergraduate course will be the informal networking you undertake.  When you find your passion, sharing it with peers can be deeply rewarding both academically and socially.  You’ll network in your lectures and tutorials, but don’t forget to look elsewhere and connect with students outside of class.  The University has a huge range of student societies that span a wide spectrum of interests from accounting and finance to the Argentinean Tango.  It is often said that the friends you make at university will be the friends you keep for life.  Student societies are a great place to find them.

Find a balance – A key piece of advice for freshers, and one that can take the entire length of your course to get right, is finding a balance between work and play.  You encounter a lot of firsts as a fresher: first time living away from home, first experience in a new city or even a new country.  It’s an exciting and chaotic time and it can be easy to let course deadlines creep up on you.  If you’re failing to prepare, you’re preparing to fail.  A couple of hours spent in the library in the days leading up to an assignment is far less stressful than pulling all-nighters to get an essay handed in on time.  It takes practice to find what study methods work for you.  You might prefer studying in your flat, in a coffee shop or in the library; listening to music or studying in silence; working during the morning or evening.  Everyone’s different.  Finding what works for you will help you be at your most productive and will positively impact your results.

What tips would you offer current freshers to help them make the most of their University experience?

Contact details

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 Postgraduate admissions
 +44(0)141 553 6118 / 6119


Strathclyde Business School
University of Strathclyde
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