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2000s Class Notes

Alumni 2000s Class Notes
Sabah Hussain - alumni

Sabah Hussain returned to Aston University to work in the Development and Alumni Relations Office following her degree. A budding designer, Sabah recently beat thousands of hopefuls to audition for BBC Two's Great British Sewing Bee, where she had the chance to showcase her creativity in front of the judges. Also discovering a passion for Muay Thai boxing, Sabah has become an avid student of this combat sport, regularly attending fight nights in support of her instructors. 

Eva Tabora - alumni

Since 2013 Eva Tabora has been working for French bank Société Générale in the Private Banking division, Hambros. During this time she has assumed various roles geared towards increasing brand loyalty and developing client relations. While studying for her Masters, Eva worked with Midlands-based Asylum-seekers help centre, St Chad's, which provides support services ranging from daily essentials, such as food and clothing, to learning opportunities.

William Knowlman chose Aston University, among other things, for its strong reputation in linguistics, its placement year and its notable graduate employability record. Through his degree he achieved one of his dreams: to do his Spanish placement in South America. He travelled to Santiago in Chile in his third year of study to work for tax and audit firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). William thrived in this new environment and had an incredible time both at work and exploring the beautiful country. When he finished his degree, William went back to work for PwC in Chile and now looks after other Aston students on their work placements there.

Agnes Jacob - alumni

After graduating, Agnes Jacobs undertook the elected role of Vice President for Education and Welfare at Aston Students’ Union. She was part of the team that re-wrote the bye-laws, managed an Appreciative Inquiry into the personalisation of the student experience, and organised a programme of events to welcome the 2012 cohort of international students. Following this, Agnes worked in the University Marketing Department as Marketing and Events Assistant. Then, in October 2013, she moved to London to take on the role of Careers Events Assistant at Imperial College, where she works on various events to help connect students with employers.

Max Pullen - alumni

Max Pullen gained first-hand commercial experience as President of Aston Students’ Union, whilst founding UK charity Born to Thrive. Securing a place on the prestigious Mott MacDonald Graduate Scheme, he is now a Junior Management Consultant, advising organisations in the private and public sectors, most recently the Department for Education and Highways Agency. 

Rachna Shah - alumni

Rachna Shah returned to her placement year employer, Friends of the Earth, after graduating. She has worked to help hundreds of people to campaign on issues that they are passionate about, specialising in environmental issues and biodiversity. In 2012 she was shortlisted for the Sheila McKechnie Foundation Environmental Campaigner award. Following a year working for youth education and empowerment charity, Envision, she returned to Aston to run the Professional Mentoring Scheme, pairing business professionals with Aston University students to help prepare them for the Placement Year.

Alex Fisher (BSc Combined Honours Psychology & Sociology, 2010) decided to utilise the research skills from her degree and quickly joined Kantar Worldpanel’s (formerly TNS) graduate scheme, working with top grocery manufacturers like Unilever and Procter & Gamble to form their strategy and product offering. After three years of helping to shape the grocery market at Kantar, Alex has recently joined the Revenue Growth Management team at H. J. Heinz, with responsibility for getting the best financial returns from deals and promotions.

Ronan Fitzgerald - alumni

Ronan Fitzgerald worked at reception at Aston for three years after graduating, deciding his plan to stay in academia wasn’t for him. Starting a band and promoting local gigs led to an interest in marketing. As Marketing Assistant at another university, he developed a flair for digital marketing, studied for a qualification in that subject, and headed to Costa Rica, volunteering as Communications Officer with a charity. All this led to a job with Wesleyan assurance society in Birmingham as Marketing Content Manager. Ronan has stayed involved with music and plays in a band called Nerve Centre with three other Aston alumni.

Yusuka Yamada - alumni

Yusuke Yamada has been working for Toshiba Corporation’s Nuclear Division since September 2008. During that time he has assumed roles of increasing responsibility, primarily in business development and strategy. In 2012 he was seconded to Westinghouse Electric Company in Pittsburgh, US, to work on a project for NuGen, which plans to develop nuclear power plants at the Moorside site in West Cumbria. He relocated to the UK in February.

Rakpinder Singh Basra & Nabhpreet Basra nee Bajwa (alumni)

Rakpinder Singh Basra and Nabhpreet Basra nee Bajwa (BSc Human Psychology, 2008 and MSc Work Psychology & Business, 2009) met at Aston University. Since leaving the University, Rakpinder joined the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Management Scheme where he successfully passed all of his exams and is now working towards becoming a Branch Manager. Nabhpreet is a Business Development Manager working for UK Mail at their Head office. The couple returned to Aston to take photographs of the place where they first met so they could display these to guests at their wedding in 2013. They also filmed a music video on campus to help capture a place that holds so many memories for them.

Nisha Kotecha (alumna)

Nisha Kotecha gained a range of experiences through working in both the private and voluntary sectors. This inspired her to start Good News Shared in 2014 spreading positivity, celebrating achievement and raising awareness of the great work people do for charities. Good News Shared is Nisha’s own social enterprise that energises and inspires people to make their mark on the world. A keen volunteer, Nisha was elected President of her local Rotaract Club for the 2014/15 year, and served as National Publicity Officer for Rotaract in Great Britain and Ireland in 2013/14. 

Business partners Andrew Allen and Nick Coleman (BSc Combined Hons Public Policy & Management/Business Admin, 2004) became close friends during their final year at Aston University. Andrew was a former Vice President of the Students’ Guild between 2004 and 2005 while Nick was Vice President of Finance and Commercial Services. Since graduating, they have launched their first business together based on a passion they developed at Aston for pork crackling. They now make seven different flavours of crackling, and, instead of pork scratchings, they sell ‘Pig & Mix’. The business, The Giggling Pig, is expanding; they recently got their first listing with a large supermarket and are having a lot of fun creating their products, including the ‘Pig of Doom’ which combines crackling with one of the hottest chillis in the world.

After graduating, Debbie Barrett née Morris joined the Admissions & Marketing Department at the University of Westminster and continued working in Higher Education student recruitment. She is married to fellow Aston graduate Matthew Barrett (BSc Business Administration and Social Studies, 2001) and is currently enjoying being a full-time mum to their three young daughters. Matthew is currently an Assistant Housemaster at Shrewsbury School.