What’s Next After Your Master’s Studies: Anthropology Alumni Panel Event

This event was held on the 13th May 2019 and was hosted by Hannah Knox. The Alumni speakers were all Master’s degree graduates from UCL Anthropology in 2014.

  • Hannah Bennett: Admin Assistant, Singapore High Commission
  • Alexandra Kilpatrick: Director at Anthropos Digital (formally a Researcher at Facebook)
  • Joseph Cook: Collaborative PhD UCL/AECOM

Hannah Bennett

Academic background

BA English and American Literature & Creative Writing at the University of Kent
MA Social and Cultural Anthropology at UCL

What she does now

Hannah works for the Singapore High Commission (Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Singapore) as an administration assistant. Her job includes producing media summaries, looking at how the UK reports on Singapore and if the High Commissioner is meeting external guests she would research them and produce a ‘fact sheet’ for her.

What led her here?

After graduating from UCL, Hannah undertook a 9 month Social Research internship at Toynbee Hall before being promoted to Research and Evaluation Assistant. In this role, she undertook several quantitative and qualitative projects as part of a debt advice service. She then moved on to Bromley by Bow Centre to work as an interviewer to help with the evaluation of their ‘Getting on with Money’ project. After that, Hannah went to work for nfpSynergy (a market research consultancy firm) as a Research Assistant. After a year she applied to GFK’s graduate scheme where she did a series of rotations and found she enjoyed working in the qualitative team the most. However, due a restructuring GFK sold their qualitative side, so when Hannah saw her current role being advertised she applied to it.

Alexandra Kilpatrick

Academic background

BA Social Psychology at Sussex University
MSc Digital Anthropology at UCL

What she does now

Alex is now the director of her own research and strategy consultancy: Anthropos Digital.

What led her there?

Before her MSc, her role became competitive so she gave up her full-time role to come to UCL. Her dissertation involved working with a digital health start-up Holding Your Hand. This research led to her being a paid employee where she learnt about agile design. She then became a User Research Consultant at ustwo on a fixed term contract working on projects that researched on topics such as how people viewed driverless cars, after which she worked for two years at True and North as an Insight and Strategy Director working with a range of clients including the BBC.

She then took up a role at Facebook as a researcher working on their AR Studio before deciding to set up her own consultancy.

Joseph Cook

Academic background

BA Architecture at the University of Westminster
MSc Social and Cultural Anthropology at UCL

What he does now

Joseph is currently doing a collaborative AHRC funded PhD UCL/AECOM (an Engineering company) focusing on Workplace Design in the Digital Age.

What led him there?

During his undergraduate degree in Architecture, he found he was becoming more interested in the people that would use the buildings more than the buildings themselves. His MSc thesis on the London Metal Exchange further developed his interested in culture and architecture. After his MSc at UCL, he worked as a consultant for AECOM working on the design team doing work such as interviewing potential users of buildings before starting the design process. He saw the advertisement for the collaborative PhD and successfully applied.

Advice from the speakers

  • Use your thesis to make connections with employers and use your fieldwork as evidence of work experience
  • If you want to work in technology, then you need to have an entrepreneurial outlook.
  • Choose your thesis topic that links with your chosen career.
  • A collaborative PhD links you with industry and academia, and is a chance to get opinions from industry professionals
  • Be tenacious about the work you go for – sometimes you may have to ‘blag’ and learn how to market yourself.

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