Careers Service


Jiali Shi (Caitlyn): Career Consultant Account Manager

  • Degree: MSc Chemistry
  • Home country: China
  • Now working: UK
  • My role now: Career Consultant Account Manager at Mandarin Consulting

My story

What has been your experience of job hunting both in the UK or globally?

I applied to more than 100 companies and kept finishing all kinds of application forms. Sometimes I would pick up some telephone interviews at the same time.

How did you find your first position after graduation?

Mandarin Consulting is one of the companies I applied for. I found the job via Indeed and was offered a first interview and then passed a final second interview.

What were the biggest challenges you faced when job hunting as an international student / returner?

English is the biggest problem, sometimes I couldn't understand the questions during the interview at all. Another one is the visa issue, so finding a company that can do this is important.

What were the most important skills / competencies that helped you to stand out?

You need to express your opinions clearly and fluently. Also you need to know the basic and professional knowledge related to the sector that you applied for, doing company background research is very important.

Did your international study experience help?

Yes, it helped me become more independent and I could face the failures with a strong attitude.

My time in Manchester

Why did you chose The University of Manchester for study?

The University of Manchester has advanced technology in science area and my major is chemistry. Therefore, I could learn more professional skills in such a great place.

Did you gain any work experience whilst at Manchester?

I did a part time job in a Chinese restaurant. I do not have any work experience before.

Did you use your Careers Service at all?

Yes, I went to there several times for career planning and modifying CV and covering letter. I also took part in several career fairs in Manchester.

What were the most important things that you learnt from your experiences?

I think the most important thing is trying as much as you can. Attend fairs and apply for more companies during the year.

What did you find most helpful for securing a job after graduation?

Ask for help from a professional organisation or at least a native speaker. They will give you the right direction.

Suggestions for other students

Apply for jobs as early as you can and as many as you can. Failure is a normal thing. If you get a chance to go to an interview, prepare well for it. At the very least you need to know the background of this company and the job details you applied for.

If you have decided to go back to China after you graduate, book the flight ticket early but do not miss any chances to volunteer here as that will help make you look different.

Chemistry is wonderful if you interested in this sector and our business school is also a great choice for students who want to work in investment banks or big four.