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“I often see BU graduates in business, and everyone is impressed when you say you have a degree from Bournemouth University, it’s like a badge of honour.”

In his dream job as AFC Bournemouth’s Equality Partnerships Executive, Ben now works with BU Student Ambassadors both on and off the pitch, a job he once held as a student at BU.

Ben, originally from Truro in Cornwall, immediately found a sense of place in Bournemouth studying BA (Hons) Advertising: “From the moment that I started at Bournemouth University, there was a sense of belonging. I was able to quickly adopt the Bournemouth community as my own.

"Bournemouth is my home, I really wanted to stay in the town, and my work with the club and the community has helped me to achieve that – it’s a rewarding job and I love what I do."

Coming to BU through an academic scholarship, Ben found opportunities in Bournemouth and its Premier League football team, AFC Bournemouth. “I think that there are lots of things that BU does to make sure that everyone has an opportunity to create their future.

“For example, I started volunteering as a Matchday Ambassador while a student, which was part of the opportunities presented by the Higher Education Partnership between AFC Bournemouth and the university. It’s all been really continuous actually, right from finishing my studies - during the last six months of my degree, I was working at the football club with the university, and then the rest of the days of the week, I was working on my dissertation.

Ben’s successes mirrored those of his favourite club: “When I joined, AFC Bournemouth was in League One and shortly after moving in at the student village I was down at Dean Court watching my first games. Throughout my studies, the club got better, and by second year and my placement, the club was on the rise too, so I feel there are great synergies between myself and the club.”

In studying BA (Hons) Advertising, Ben was left with a thorough understanding of a wide range of areas of the subject: “I think the advertising degree at BU is very broad, it allows you to cover all bases, from strategy to creative, and there’s a lot of planning and really getting to understand how business functions all through those processes, which I put into place in my current role.

"My placement came about via BU’s MyCareerHub, so I didn’t need to look too far to find something. I did my placement at Clark’s International, working in Asia and Pacific PR across places like Shanghai, India and Japan, which gave so many opportunities to really enlighten myself in the ways of international business and markets, which gave me a real sense of clarity in what I wanted to do after university.

Ben's job centres on relationship marketing, working across a multitude of partnerships across the club, including charitable and community partnerships.

"It’s about embedding the club into the heart of the community, and putting equality at the heart of everything we do," he said. "I often see BU graduates in business, and everyone is impressed when you say you have a degree from Bournemouth University, it’s like a badge of honour.

“You create great friendships at university – I’d say it’s been the best four years of my life, for both what I experienced, and what I got back. The university keeps on improving but there’s always a sense of nostalgia when I’m walking down into Poole House.

“Because I’m working with the university again so soon after graduating, it means it’s quite natural for me to do business there; even if I am constantly bumping into lecturers who are perhaps worried that I might have failed my final year and I’m back at BU on a new course!”

Find out more about studying Advertising at BU