Leaving home and going far away for university pushed me out of my comfort zone, but it meant I was much better equipped to do what I wanted

Florence McClelland
Florence McClelland
Marketing and Publishing Coordinator
French and Russian BA
Florence works as a Marketing and Publishing Coordinator for Channel View Publications (an independent academic publisher).
Florence McClelland

What is your current role and your main responsibilities?

Marketing and Publishing Coordinator for Channel View Publications (an independent academic publisher)

Please summarise your overall career since graduation, but in particular, what was your first relevant role to the area in which you work now and how did you secure that position?

After graduating I moved to Montpellier, France for a couple of years and taught English to adults. I came back to the UK (Bristol, where I'm from) in summer 2014 and found an internship with Channel View Publications. Once it was over, they offered me a permanent job and I'm still with them getting on for six years later!

How has your qualification helped you in your career?

Obviously the French part of my degree helped enormously with moving to France and dealing with things like finding a flat-share and a job. Although I don't use languages for my current job, since we publish applied linguistics/bilingualism research, I think having a modern languages degree gave my CV an advantage. People are also always particularly interested in the fact I studied Russian - it's been a talking point in interviews and I think it probably helps me stick in people's heads afterwards. In addition, my publishing job involves quite a lot of writing (of blurbs, copy etc.) and the essay writing skills I developed at university will definitely have helped with that, alongside being able to self-motivate when working independently.

What is an average day like for you in your current role?

Since it's a small company (just seven of us), it's quite a varied job as we all pitch in where necessary. Publishing involves a lot of admin, but I also devise marketing plans for each book with my colleague, run the social media accounts and the blog, and work with authors and designers on the book covers. In better times, it also involved some travel as we attend conferences all over the world!

What were your career aspirations when you were younger?

I wanted to be an author - and now I deal with authors all day long! My heart was set on fiction rather than postgraduate research though...

What impact has attending University had on you?

It definitely helped me to grow up. Leaving home and going relatively far away for university pushed me right out of my comfort zone and was initially a real challenge, but it meant that when I graduated I was much better equipped to do what I wanted and move to France, even if it was scary.

Why did you choose Sheffield? / What sets Sheffield apart from other Universities?

I liked the atmosphere of Sheffield the best when I came to the open day. The people seemed the most down-to-earth and I liked that it was a small-feeling city that you could easily walk around (I was used to lots of hills from living in Bristol).

What did you most enjoy about your time at Sheffield?

My favourite part of my degree (and still one of the best years of my life!) was the year abroad. I spent half the year in Yaroslavl, Russia and the other half in Rennes, France. It was a bizarre, fun, unforgettable learning curve of a year...I still talk about it often.

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