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The University of Southampton
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Stephanie Bass

BSc Economics and Business Economics, 1992

Stephanie graduated in 1992
Stephanie Bass

What made you select the University of Southampton?

The main reason I chose the University of Southampton was the course - Economics and Business Economics. The course was highly practical and was exactly right for pursuing a career in business and ultimately running my own company someday. In addition Jersey, my home was just a short flight from Eastleigh airport. The journey from door to door could literally be done in an hour and a half.

Did you have any anxieties about going to University?

I had no anxieties at all. In fact I couldn't wait to go and experience life away from home.

How did Southampton help you settle in once you started?

I was so well looked after at the Hall of Residence I lived in - Highfield. The committee members were there to ask any questions organising fantastic events within the first week so that everyone could get to know each other very quickly. I felt at home almost immediately.

What is Southampton like as a place to study?

The library facilities both on campus and at Highfield Hall were superb - so easy to find peace and quiet and all the resources you needed.

What did you enjoy about the course?

I loved the amount of choices the course gave- I was able to study subjects like marketing, accountancy and technical German and still obtain a degree entitled Economics and Business Economics.

What opportunities did you take up that really added value to your experience as a student?

I was elected First Year Representative and then President of Highfield Hall. It showed me how to work both within a team as well as a leader to get the best out of people. My confidence soared in those roles and it taught me a lot about how to run a business.

How did your studies and experience at Southampton shape your future?

Without a doubt I would not be where I am today (running my own successful company) without the ingredients of my degree and the experience of being Hall President. My time at Southampton University gave me all the skills I needed.

Tell us about your current role?

I am the owner and managing director of Channel Islands Training & Development (CITD), the company I set up 14 years ago. The business provides quality training solutions for the corporate sector offering management development, marketing, accountancy, IT and personal development courses.

When you graduated what was your ambition and do you feel you’ve achieved it?

My ambition was to one day run my own business.

Do you have any future ambitions?

I would like to expand the business and deliver training further afield. We currently deliver programmes in the Channel Islands, Isle of Man, UK, in some European countries and since 2010 out in the United Arab Emirates.

What are you most proud of?

In 2003 I was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year at the Jersey Awards of Enterprise as a result of CITD's success. In 2009 I became the youngest Fellow of the CIM in the Channel Islands by more than 10 years and in 2012 I was nominated as a finalist at the Jersey IoD awards. I am really proud of all three things.

What advice would you give to a student starting their degree at Southampton?

Enjoy the process as much as possible as it goes by far too quickly. Work hard and play hard. Explore different opportunities - there are so many clubs and associations to try out.

If you had your time at University again is there anything you’d do differently?

Probably I would have taken more trips out to the New Forest and would have generally done more exercise out in the fresh air.

What tips would you give to current students looking to start a career in your sector? What could they be doing now to make themselves more employable when they graduate in the future?

Definitely I would try and obtain some work shadowing experience and ask as many questions as possible. Also volunteering your services to a company without pay demonstrates how determined you are to gain future paid work in that sector.

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