UCL Department of Geography


Kartika Zayad, MSc Environment, Politics and Society

Meet Kartika, a graduate from our MSc Environment, Politics and Society course and, currently, an Account Executive at public relations firm ThoughtSpark.

Kartika Zayad Testimonial

28 March 2024

She tells us about how the flexible structure of the course convinced her it was the right choice to pursue her interests in environmental politics and contemporary climate issues.

Why were you interested in studying an MSc in Environment, Politics and Society generally?

“The first thing that attracted me to the MSc Environment, Politics and Society programme was the flexible course structure. 

“After having browsed through the course webpage, read students' testimonials and spoken to previous students who have taken the course, I saw the programme as an opportunity to combine my interest in understanding environmental politics with contemporary climate issues.

“Having the course structured with traditional classroom teachings and discussions with my peers allowed me to understand issues that mattered much deeper.”

What was it that encouraged you to choose UCL to study it?

“I did my undergraduate at the University of Exeter - though quiet, peaceful and nestled away from the bustle of the city, I was eager (probably a little too eager) to continue studying in a big city. 

“I was excited by the prospect and as UCL boasts its diverse community, I became even more impatient to meet more people and to kickstart my learning at UCL.”

What were the most interesting or engaging things you learned on the course?

“Amongst the many modules I took throughout the programme, I found the discussions we had during the postcolonial cultural geographies classes to be not only most engaging but also eye-opening. 

“Being a person of colour, I always found it slightly difficult to speak about race. But the classroom became a safe space where other students of colour came together to speak about their own individual experiences regarding race and being a minority. 

“I learnt some of the most interesting and important things about race in this class and I gained lessons that I would be reminded of throughout my life.”

Can you tell us about any particularly memorable experiences from your time as a Masters student with us?

“Hanging out at the Institute after lectures which might seem like what an average UCL student might do, but when you realise how short the programme is and how everyone leaves after the course - it makes you cherish the little moments. 

“Doing the Masters course at UCL made me appreciate every little time I had with my coursemates.”

What are you doing now that you’ve graduated?

“Currently, I am an Account Executive at ThoughtSpark, a public relations firm. 

“We’ve worked with clients in the sustainability and environment sector, and I hope to do some meaningful and impactful work by amplifying the work they do and continue to do so on a much larger scale in the future.” 

Would you recommend studying Environment, Politics and Society in the Department and why?

“Yes, for sure! A few months before the course finished for me, I was approached by a few students who were interested in the programme and you can ask them how much I recommended the course! 

“And they are all actually currently enrolled in the programme!

“To me, the course is perfect if you’re unsure if you would like to continue into academia or step into the world of work right after finishing. 

“Either way, the course prepares you with enough knowledge and networking opportunities for you to progress into either career path!”

More Information

Interested in following in Kartika’s footsteps? Find out more about our MSc Environment, Politics and Society course and see our other degrees in the Study section.