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The University of Southampton
Mathematical Sciences

Claire Mack BSc Mathematics with Spanish 2016

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Hi, I'm Claire Mack and I studied BSc Mathematics with Spanish within Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Southampton is one of the few universities I was considering that offers this combination along with a year abroad in a Spanish speaking country.

Why did you choose to study at Southampton?

I chose to complete my undergraduate studies at Southampton because not only did I want to study Mathematics, but I also aspired to make my career opportunities more international by incorporating a modern language into my degree. Southampton is one of the few universities I was considering that offers this combination along with a year abroad in a Spanish speaking country.

What is your opinion about the University’s efforts to increase the flexibility of degree programmes and introduce more choice for personalised learning?

I truly support this flexibility. I chose to study and take an internship in Santiago, Chile which is not a standard option for Mathematics students. However, both my Programme Director and Year Abroad Supervisor fully supported my decision whilst also ensuring I would be stretched academically by the statistics courses I chose for my semester in the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, and by my work internship in the reinsurance company, Munich Re.

The University helps students find placements and internships to complement their studies. How has your time in Chile impacted your studies and what are the best parts for you?

Firstly my language skills have improved immensely; there are many different accents across the Spanish speaking world and the Chilean accent is known to be notoriously difficult to understand! I have also been extremely fortunate to have been able to experience life here as a university student as well as in the work environment, which has been extremely rewarding. The statistical methods that I learnt in the university complement the actuarial based work from the internship and both opportunities have helped to confirm the career path I wish to follow.

How does the University help get students ready for employment?

There are always career fairs on campus and emails being sent regarding internship opportunities and graduation schemes, so the university provides all the required contacts and students need only pursue them. Personally, now having had some work experience in my chosen field I feel more certain about what I want to do after I finish my degree. It was always very important for me that the university I chose would prepare me not only for my undergraduate exams but also for my professional life afterwards, and I feel that Southampton has achieved this.

What are your plans for the future/ambitions?

I have especially enjoyed working in the reinsurance industry and so am considering taking my actuarial exams after I have finished university. I would also love to learn another language to expand my work prospects even more – Portuguese is next on my list!

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