Rebecca Vidal is an MBS student from Mexico City, studying a Masters of Management (Marketing).
Why did you choose the University of Melbourne for your Masters?
Well I have a Bachelor of Communications from Mexico City and I was working in Public Relations back then. I wanted to learn about the business and managerial side of the brands I was working with so The University of Melbourne had that with this Masters. What I think that I like the most is that they touch on the social, environmental and economic challenges so I think that from there I was very interested in applying for the course. I checked the ranking as well and it was the best University for taking this course. I feel very inspired all the time about the academic minds and every time I finish a semester. They have a reputation for being the best University in Australia so that’s why I chose to come here.
What activities were you involved in at University?
I haven’t had the chance to be involved in a lot of activities that the University offers mostly because when I started to studying, I started working as well. I’ve been very active by doing internships and having a full-time job in marketing. I’ve been involved in focus groups on how to improve the student experience. I also joined Mandarin club during my first semester to learn the language but everything was getting pretty hectic so I had to leave that club. But I think I got caught in the FOMO loop because I’ve been working and interning so I decided to talk to MBSSA here. I think it’s impossible to join every single club at the University because there are hundreds so being able to share a little bit about my experience is great.
Which events held by the University were most helpful to you?
I attended a club event where someone from L’oreal talked which was very useful because she was a student from the University and she talked about how to land a job at L’oreal. She gave a lot of insight about how you can start planning your path around this career. I think everyone left very inspired from that talk because it was relatable and she shared a lot of great tips on how to upskill outside of the University and how to take advantage of the opportunities that University gives you.
Did you face any challenges during your course?
I think one of the challenges that I faced during my course is how to cope with anxiety and also with burnout. I think it was during my second or third semester where I was doing lots of activities and working as well as a full-load of subjects. I reached out to Stop 1 to help me to get some counselling and they offered a lot of workshops for different skills like writing, research and how to plan around the exam period. They taught me how to use your extensions for every assignment or even for the exam period. So if you feel like everything is too much, you can use your extensions! They also encouraged me to be more vocal with my team mates and with my lecturers and asking them to help you when you don’t understand things.
I had an experience with one of my team mates, two semesters ago. He told me that he was coping with depression and anxiety which made me more aware, for example when someone might not be working at the level as you that something might be going on personally. Having a support system has helped me to go through Uni and it’s amazing how the whole community is aware and going through the same things as you are in life and in Uni. You can find a lot of support there as well.
Any advice for new students?
Establish your own limits. You always come first. Your health always comes first. Yes, University is a challenge and is going to be stressful but there are a lot of ways you can cope with it and I think that the first step is to be more aware of what’s going on with yourself and then to reach out for help through Stop 1, your teammates, your friends or family.
Also, learn how to rest because it’s so important. You might want to do a lot of things in a very limited amount of time which is great, but know yourself and test everything out. See what works for you and stop doing things and start with new things if you’re not feeling it. Going out for walks also boosts your creativity and makes you feel better about a lot of things. Even taking a nap takes less than 10 minutes but can help you feel boosted. That’s my two cents!
Connect with Rebecca Vidal on LinkedIn to hear more about her story.