From campus to chemicals: Nathan's Journey into the world of business

BA (Hons) Business Management student, Nathan Sawyer, is putting the skills he’s learned on his degree into practice – he’s secured a year long placement with global chemicals specialist Lubrizol.

Real-world learning

Nathan was encouraged by his lecturers to gain valuable work experience to set him apart in the graduate jobs market. Nathan initially took part in an 80-hour Events Management DRIVEN placement at Reunion Belper, before setting his sights on a placement year.

Keen to get real-life business experience, Nathan decided to apply for a placement between his second and third year. Nathan was able to secure a competitive placement role with Derbyshire based global chemicals specialists, Lubrizol. Working in their Global Marcomms team, Nathan works with colleagues all over the world managing their creative projects. Nathan says:

“I have been able to continue to develop my skillsets - specifically communication, time management, organisational, presenting and project management skills. I am delighted to feel treated as a full-time employee with my own workload and responsibilities rather than as a placement student.”

Nathan has also had the chance to get involved with a range of employee committees at Lubrizol, including the Charity and Communities committee, the Sustainability Group, as well as working towards becoming a Mental Health First Aider. Nathan says:

“In my opinion, taking a placement year especially with such a large company allows me to differentiate myself from other students who will apply for graduate roles at the same time as me by helping me gain relevant work experience to apply to my career. I’ve also found it beneficial working in a corporate environment which I can apply to future roles. At Lubrizol I am actively encouraged to try new things, ask questions and network within the company all of which I believe will support my future career aspirations.”

Why business?

Nathan knew he wanted a course that would lead him to a wide range of career options, and our BA (Hons) Business Management was the perfect match. Nathan credits one of his modules, Principles in Responsible Management, for raising his interest in sustainability:

“Learning about corporate ethics, sustainability and the triple bottom line in Principles of Responsible Management ultimately inspired me to take on sustainability work at Lubrizol.”

Business Management student, Nathan Sawyer.

“I have enjoyed the variation in my course studying human resources, marketing, project management, finance, and enterprising modules all under one qualification.”

Nathan Sawyer
BA (Hons) Business Management

Inspiring lecturers

Nathan credits the lecturers on his course for not only encouraging him to gain industry experience, but also showcasing the kind of careers available in business through their own industry experience into their teaching:

“I feel inspired by lecturers when hearing about their wider work or previous careers. Some lecturers do consulting work alongside their current roles, others have really interesting insights working in a variety of different industries and sectors. Hearing real world examples of what you are learning at university is inspiring when thinking about my future career.”