Return of The Student – A Sequel 20 Years in the Making.

Here goes, first blog. This is all so different to the last time. It was 1999 the bookend to the decade of Britpop, The Peace Process and Pre Spinning Around Kylie – in no particular order. That was also the year I obtained my BA in English which naturally led on to a career in the Financial Services sector. After living the dream for 20 glorious years I have taken the financial and personal plunge back into the world of Academia in an attempt to revive my long mummified intellectual creativity….it may be a deep dive

A simple question to begin – why now? Its not that I didn’t enjoy getting to grips with endless analysis of policy wording for Property Insurance and when you throw in the endless submissions detailing the construction of rural factories and workshops – well what’s not to love. But in truth while my children were little this was fine and I really do believe some to the skills honed during this period will stand me in good stead. For me though it is now time to try something new, something that can make a positive impact on the world around me – if that doesn’t sound too cheesy 🙂

Of course organisations need comprehensive insurance cover but I’ve definitely served my time. However part of the job I have enjoyed involved interactions with business placers – the face to face meetings in Dungiven and the like, the trouble shooting workshops over the phone – in other words the communication aspect. If I can apply this interest to a framework which I find both fascinating and frustrating in equal measures – again what’s not to love. A hint maybe that my specialism will be Politics – an interest cultivated at school and maintained ever since. Someone needs to sort out Brexit I suppose…maybe not in my first week though!

After such a long break from education I can say that the landscape has certainly changed. So its all about Blogging, Vlogging, Social Media – you get the picture. These concepts simply weren’t a thing in 1999 and since then not something I would necessarily equate to Academic life but here we are. It is amazing to learn that YouTube channels are the way to go now, but all is not lost. I can call on my secret weapon the J.O.E – my 12 year old son. This guided missile of modern communication has been broadcasting away for several years-with nothing but his phone and a headful of opinions on the MEU (Marvel Extended Universe). With 99 followers and his broadcast on why Apu should not be binned from The Simpsons reaching 800 views he will most certainly be my personal social media mentor. Let the good times roll.


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Deirdre Vaughan is an MSc in Communication & Public Relations student at Ulster University. She can be found on Twitter:  @e65434f0fdba4bf and LinkedIn: