In our ‘10 Questions’ series, KBS caught up with Aliaa ElShabrawy a KBS MSc Digital Marketing and Analytics student.
Tell us about yourself
My name is Aliaa ElShabrawy. I’m Egyptian born and raised in Kuwait, I’ve lived and worked in Dubai and Croatia before coming to the UK for my Masters. My undergraduate degree was in Architectural Engineering before shifting careers to digital marketing a little over 8 years ago where I was mostly involved in content marketing and creative advertising. I’m currently studying my Master’s degree in Digital Marketing & Analytics to learn more about decision making through analytics particularly to resist ‘The Hippo Effect’, something I’ve constantly struggled with throughout my career experience.
What attracted you to your programme of study and why?
One of the main reasons I pursued a full time taught Masters degree and not just an online degree was the resources you can use and the network you build throughout your experience. I chose Kent not only because, academically, the programme provides a balance between putting my years of experience into learning the fundamental theories and frameworks of digital marketing but it also ventures into the analytical decision-making process. Often in business, you will have opposing views but if your viewpoint is well supported with data, it’s highly unlikely anyone will argue with that.
How do you think a Master’s degree will enhance your career/job?
Particularly in digital marketing, it’s easy to feel an expert when you’ve successfully managed a couple of social media pages and gotten a couple of online certificates. While this is how I got into digital marketing in the first place, I knew digital is much of a bigger, wider umbrella. Although a Master’s degree alone is not a guaranteed recipe for success, I hope it fortifies my expertise and opens doors for me when going back to the field to be able to use my skill set to help not only businesses but also other people by passing them the knowledge I’ve acquired here.
Which modules have you enjoyed the most and why?
I enjoyed the ‘Marketing Research’ module in the first term. This term I’m particularly enjoying learning about ‘Data Mining’ and ‘Digital Marketing Strategies’ as I feel they cover the core knowledge required to build and forecast a successful marketing and business plans.
What are the facilities like at Kent Business School and on the Medway campus?
Despite my taught hours are based in Medway, I spend my time equally split between both Canterbury and Medway campuses thanks to the free coach service provided by the university. I also make the best use of my Kent email to ask for help and get access to most of the scientific and subscription sites. Both Templeman and Drill Hall Library also provide the easiest and latest technologies to find anything you need both online and offline. The computer labs also have the latest softwares installed so it makes it much easier to practice or use them for our individual assignments.
Describe your experience of the Business Start-Up Journey
I remember meeting Rebecca for the very first time in what was supposed to be a workshop but ended up a one-on-one because I was the only one who showed up. That, however, didn’t for a minute discourage her or made her pay less attention. I knew there and then that I have to get myself engaged in whatever she’s offering. The Business Start-Up has been in many ways a life-changing experience because my neuroplasticity is constantly being challenged by Rebecca and Adam. Additionally, it’s just so refreshing to be surrounded and nurtured by like-minded people who share your same thoughts and ethics.
Tell us about your business idea
I’m working on a couple of business ideas at the moment one of which tackles finding unbiased resources online for prospective higher education students to help them properly research different universities, programs, and modules to make the right decision.
Do you have a mentor/role model who has inspired you?
- On a professional level: David Ogilvy and Samih Sawires.
- On a personal level, it’s got to be Rebecca Smith.
What do you want to do after Graduation?
I’m hoping my background experience paired with this Master’s degree equips me to become either a successful digital consultant or to start my own business.
Any advice to somebody thinking of coming to Kent Business School?
If there’s one advice I can give, it would be making the best out of all the available resources during your time at Kent. Everything and everyone is there to help you succeed and make you proud of yourself. It’s up to you to make it an experience of a lifetime or just another couple of years in education.
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