Last week we heard from Alex and James, graduates of postgraduate study programmes in the College of Arts. Alex used her Museum Studies Msc to score her dream job as a museum curator. James published his PhD thesis on 19th century Scottish history, while at the same time juggling his day job in the Development and Alumni Office at the University.
This week we talk to Philip Tonner and Luna Guo, as we find out what they’ve been up to since leaving the University. Where are they now?
Meet Philip Tonner
Philip Tonner is Head of Philosophy and Religion at Hutcheson’s Grammar School in Glasgow. He graduated with a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Glasgow in 2006. He describes his career path since completing his research degree at Glasgow:
‘Since graduating in 2006 I have worked in both museums and education.
Prior to joining Hutchesons’ in 2011 I was Research Support Officer for Glasgow Museums. During this time I was seconded to the University of Glasgow for two years as a Lecturer. I’m currently Head of Philosophy and Religion and Director of the Hutchesons’ Centre for Research at Hutchesons’ Grammar School in Glasgow. I have also recently graduated with a DPhil from the University of Oxford (2016).’
Philip studied for his undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at Glasgow, and really made the most of his student days:
‘The University of Glasgow was an excellent choice of university for undergraduate and postgraduate study. I had a very wide undergraduate education that set me up well for both my career as a secondary school teacher and as a museums professional. My time as a postgraduate research student was very enjoyable. I had the opportunity to conduct my research in a thriving department with expert supervision.’
Find out more about the postgraduate degrees offered by the Philosophy.
Meet Luna Guo
Luna Guo graduated from the University of Glasgow with an Msc in Media Management in 2011. She now runs her own business, Fusion Cultural Management, and a volunteering organisation, Youai Scotland, which aims to help Chinese students integrate into the local communities in which they have come to study. She explains:
‘After graduating, I worked as a Market Researcher at PEXEL Research and then progressed to the China project leader. Then I got another offer at a Chemical company based in Leven being a Customer Service dealing with their far east business. During that time, I was given a special mission to participate in a joint-venture project and became the CEO’s assistant during his trips to China.
After I left the company, I chose to start my own business, and really use the knowledge and experience which I’d gained during my Master’s study. My business is called Fusion Cultural Development. I received great help from Business Gateway, also received a start-up fund from Glasgow Regeneration Agency (Now called Job and Business Glasgow). I also funded Youai Scotland, a Chinese students volunteering society in Glasgow University, which has expanded to a Community Interests Company now, aiming to help Chinese students integrate into local society.
Now the company and society are both successful. I have provided at least 15 part-time job opportunities to Chinese students and Youai has around 200 volunteers registered. We hope to expand our business so that we can provide more practical opportunities to Chinese students in future.’
Luna’s study at Glasgow was an exciting and inspirational time for her. She explains:
‘My student life at the university was really the best ever! Coming to Glasgow was so worth it! I wanted to have as many opportunities to practice my English as possible, so I decided to join some student societies. I used to be the Student President in China so I was so excited to see so many clubs and societies in GU. I chose Ceilidh Dance, Wind Band, Duke of Edinburgh Award, and International Society to join in and made a lot of friends who helped my English improve significantly! But I didn’t see many Chinese students joining, which made me wonder why. That’s the reason I founded Youai Scotland- to help them.
Duke of Edinburgh Awards club was my favourite. it’s also the one where I have learned the most! The members were so friendly and they taught me so many things about local culture. The tasks of the award led me to volunteer at Hillhead High School, participate in outdoor expeditions and so many other interesting activities! It gave me the idea how to help Chinese students through Youai, truly my most valuable experience in GU.
Before I studied my master’s degree, my English was only IELTS level 5, so I felt I needed to improve it before beginning postgraduate study. I took a pre-masters course at Glasgow International College, and was planning to go to another University for Media Management until I found out the organiser of my course, Gillian Doyle, had moved to Glasgow University, so I applied for GU again and was accepted. Our class was very international, I had the best environment to learn the different culture from them. I really value the time I spent studying at Glasgow. During my master’s degree, I gained the ability to overcome the difficulties, the ability to research independently, use critical thinking, and gave me the confidence to start my own business.’