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Q&A with Christine John

Christine was a Sociology of Childhood and Children's Rights MA student, class of 2018. She is now a Project Manager for social mobility charity East London Business Alliance.

Why our Sociology of Childhood and Children's Rights MA?

I didn't particularly enjoy my first [undergraduate] experience at university and after working for a few years I really wanted to study something that genuinely interested me and had an intense focus on young people and children. After attending the open day and speaking to the Programme Leader I decided to undertake this course.

What did you enjoy most about your programme?

I enjoyed meeting the variety of individuals who were on the course! Particularly where the focus fell to global childhoods it was great having those personal insights

Did you experience any benefits from studying in London?

I think studying at a prestigious university like the UCL Institute of Education (IOE) is very beneficial in the competitive job market in the UK. I found that in interviews for education related jobs, the name alone ignited many conversations.

How did you get to where you are now in your career?

I started off doing an internship for a widening participation/social mobility charity after completing my undergraduate degree. I really enjoyed interacting and supporting young people in being the best they could be. I was able to get a full-time job in the organisation and have since continued to work in the social mobility sphere.

How have you applied the learning from your degree programme in your job?
The knowledge from the MA has been very helpful in my work with young people. The understanding of the importance of realising children's rights has materialised in my interactions with the young people from the disadvantaged areas I have worked in. I have delivered lunch and learn sessions to colleagues about my dissertation opening up conversations as to how we can further implement my knowledge strategically.

 

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Supporting young people across London in being the best they can be whilst raising their aspirations by introducing them to new careers and opportunities.

Do you have any tips or helpful advice for incoming students?

  • Read widely!
  • Speak to and get to know the other people in your class, particularly when it gets to writing your dissertation - their insights will be invaluable.
  • Speak to the lecturers about their research interests - they may be working on research that is pertinent to your work.

Is there anything else you would like to say about your time at the UCL Institute of Education?

I found studying at the UCL Institute of Education to be a great experience. The quality of teaching is very high and staff members were always willing to provide invaluable guidance and support. I would definitely encourage anyone thinking of taking up study to consider the IOE.