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Natalia Dziedzic

Natalie DziedzicForensic Analyst, Deloitte UK

BA Law with Business Studies, 2012

What made you choose Middlesex University?

Middlesex has a great location and campus facilities. The university offers many services and opportunities in addition to the courses they offer, such as sports teams, scholarships, volunteering opportunities and work experience.

What attracted you to your course and made you apply?

Middlesex offered a joint degree in Law and Business and I wanted to explore both areas during my studies.

What aspects of your course did you enjoy most?

I enjoyed the variety of courses I took and being taught by knowledgeable and passionate staff.

What is your fondest memory of life at Middlesex?

I think the most rewarding experience was representing Middlesex at the UK final of 2012 CIMA Global Business Challenge with three other Middlesex students. It was an opportunity to put all we learned at the university into practice.

What one piece of advice would you give to a prospective student interested in studying at Middlesex?

Looking back at my experience I would encourage a prospective student to consider Middlesex and make the most of it from day one. In the current graduate job market a good degree is just one of the requirements. Employers expect graduates to already have work experience and a broad skillset when they    leave university.  

During my time at Middlesex I worked hard and finished with a first class degree, but I also played for the university sports team, volunteered as a Student Buddy, gained work experience as a Student Learning Assistant, learned three languages, represented the university at external competitions, celebrated  the Olympic torch relay stopping on campus and much more. So make the most of your time!

What does your current job involve?

I currently work as a Forensic Analyst at Deloitte LLP. My job is quite varied and so far I have worked on a number of high-profile forensic investigations including spending a few months abroad. My work often requires quick learning and adaptability. I frequently travel in the UK and abroad. It is  very rewarding and gives an insight into many industries and companies.

How did your course and time at Middlesex help you to get where you are professionally today?

A degree in law and business was a good foundation for my current job where analytical skills and an interest in business are very important. My volunteering and work experience gained at the university and in part-time jobs helped me to demonstrate skills such as teamwork and communication during  competency interviews. Speaking a foreign language was a requirement for the job so learning French, Spanish and Chinese at Middlesex was time well-spent. Representing university at external competitions such as CIMA Global Business Challenge helped me to impress the employer during the interview. I  received a number of scholarships and awards for academic achievement, contribution to work and volunteering at the university. Having these on my CV demonstrated commitment to studies and initiative.

What made you choose the industry you work in and what are its pros and cons?

I enjoy learning new things and skills. Forensic work offers the variety and exposure I wanted in my early career. The pros are working with people from many countries and backgrounds, exploring different industries, constantly learning new things and travelling. The cons are really just related to  delays and flight cancellations when travelling.

How did you get your foot on the career ladder post university?

After graduating from Middlesex I completed a master's degree in law with a semester in a French university. Both degrees combined with language skills and work experience helped me to land my first full time job at Deloitte.

I applied for an Associate role at Deloitte because I believed it was a great opportunity to get work experience in a company recognised and valued in many countries. The recruitment process for my role involved an application form with an attached CV, a screening questionnaire, a telephone interview  and finally two interviews and two exercises to complete.

My advice to graduates or students looking for a job would be to check that you meet the criteria and prove it on your CV and application form. Research the company and make sure you understand what you could be doing in the job you are applying for. Look beyond graduate schemes and internships. There  are many other vacancies advertised you could apply for.

What does the future hold for you?

It is difficult to say at this early stage in my career but I will keep developing my skills and knowledge and be open to new opportunities.

What are the top three career tips you would give to current students and recent graduates?

For current students:

Work hard and be committed to your studies.

Be open-minded and prepared to step out of your comfort zone. It is often the best way to learn and develop.

Gain some work experience in a part-time job, internship or volunteering and learn some extra skills such as languages. These will help you to stand out in the application process and be very important for competency interviews.

For recent graduates and those who are in their first job:

Don't underestimate the power of networking. Speak to your family, friends, fellow students and work colleagues. They can provide you with helpful feedback and advice. Your network can help you learn about different careers and opportunities you wouldn't know about otherwise.

Spend some time to create and manage a professional profile such as LinkedIn, follow companies you might be interested in and be up to date with news and events in the world and the industry you are interested in.

Aim to have a job you love even if it will take time and effort.

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