Laura de Haan

  • Current role: MSc Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire
  • Year of graduation: 2018
  • Degree course: BA (Hons) English Language & Communication with Journalism
'Grab every opportunity that is thrown at you to develop new skills. University is such a great place to acquire new skills, meet new people and explore different areas of life.'

We asked Laura...

What is your current role and how did you get to this point in your career?

I couldn't leave the student life behind me just yet, so I decided to do an MSc in Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire.

How did your studies at the University of Hertfordshire help shape your career?

Through my English Language & Communication programme, I realised I am most interested in psycho-linguistics; how language works in the brain. This has led me to develop an interest in broader psychology and ultimately led me to apply for the Psychology conversion course.

What made you decide to study at this University?

The flexibility of the programme meant that at the University I was able to pursue both my interests in Journalism as well as my penchant for language and linguistics.

What was the best or most useful thing about your course?

The overwhelming support I got from my lecturers. Whenever I had interests that lay beyond the topics covered, they always gave me the freedom to explore those subjects and weave them into my coursework. This individuality has really helped me find out what I want to do in life.

What is your stand-out memory from your time at the University?

Being part of the University's Oral History team, which ultimately led me to win a Dean's Award. I was able to conduct interviews all over the country, the furthest one being in North Wales.

Are you still in contact with friends you met at the University of Hertfordshire?

The friends I made at university are friends for life. Some of them are still at Hertfordshire, because they went abroad for a year in between. Others I keep in contact with via social media, as we are all scattered around the country in different jobs.

What advice would you give your younger self if you were starting at the University tomorrow?

Grab every opportunity that is thrown at you to develop new skills. University is such a great place to acquire new skills, meet new people and explore different areas of life.

Do you have any advice for University of Hertfordshire graduates who are considering a career in your industry?

Technically I am not in a career yet. But when it comes to Journalism and Communications, I would advise people to find out what makes them unique and what makes them stand out from the crowd. Home in on that and own it!

What are your future career plans/ ambitions?

I would love to work for the NHS and use both my background in linguistics and psychology.