e-BM Graduate 2012-2013
"Everything is focused on the real-world of business"
Di Li travelled to Warwick from China in 2012 to study e-Business Management. Having gained her MSc in 2013, she stayed to work towards a PhD. Di talked to us about why she chose WMG, her experience of the course and why she decided to continue her studies here.
While studying for her Bachelor of Management at Tianjin Normal University, Di began to research MSc programmes that would help her to reach her professional goals. “A Bachelor degree was not really enough to get the kind of job I wanted in China,” she said. “To be honest, I believe that the higher education in the UK or US is more advanced than other countries around the world. I was looking to travel anyway and the UK is a great country. I thought it would be wonderful to spend a year there studying.”
Di applied to more than ten universities and received offers from most of them. So why did she choose WMG? “The very high ranking was an important factor. Also, I talked to a student on the course. She gave me detailed information about the programme and talked a lot about its practical focus, plus the fact that there are guest tutors from outside the university: people who actually work in business and industry. It all seemed exactly what I was looking for.”
“When I first saw the campus I thought it was amazing,” she continued. “It’s very green and very beautiful. You can even see rabbits and foxes running around! There are excellent resources and facilities too, both academic and leisure. It’s all in one place so you don’t have to go far for everything you need.”
On to the course itself then, which Di described as “challenging but highly recommended”. Its format is different to those offered by many other universities. Rather than study a module, sit an exam and move on the next module, there’s an intensive week’s study followed by six weeks in which to complete an assignment.
“This way of working felt a little bit strange at first,” said Di. “But it makes a lot of sense. When you take an exam then immediately study another subject, you forget a lot of what you’ve learned. This way, you have time to explore the subject in-depth and understand how the lessons can be put into practice in real business situations. You don’t just learn the theory, but learn how to use it”
This practical element of the programme was something that Di was keen to emphasize. “One example was in the Creating a Profitable eBusiness module. We analysed the website of an actual business that wasn’t performing too well. As a team, we looked at its good points, its bad points and how it could be optimised effectively. Our aim was to maximise its performance without increasing costs.
For one of my elective modules, I chose Project Planning, Management and Control. As part of this, myself and other students worked as a team to simulate actual projects as we discovered how to use tools, control costs, manage risks and oversee the project through to delivery. Combined with all the other subjects I studied like Supply Chain Integration and Information Systems Management, this helped me to see all aspects of how e-business based organisations can be developed using current technologies.”
Once Di completed her course, graduating with a distinction and winning a Departmental Prize for Excellent Performance in Course and Project Work, she began her PhD at WMG focusing on business process modelling and optimisation, including the integration of business processes with data models.
“It’s an area I had worked on for my dissertation, and it’s something I wanted to look into further and deepen my understanding.” Also, I love Warwick. I’m enjoying it tremendously so far and my aim is to become an academic member of staff or a consultant in the future, which I believe the study in Warwick can provide me a good support to.
“All in all, I’m really glad I chose to study here and I’m proud of what I’ve achieved so far. My fellow students feel the same way too. It’s been a great experience.”