Lead 5050: Beth Watson

Black and white photo of Beth next to quote My wish for the future is that we can create a world where people are encouraged to listen and learn from each other.

BSC is providing an opportunity for colleagues from across our business to be part of Lead5050, a leading organisation empowering women in education.

We’re speaking to members of the BSC team about why joining Lead 5050 is so important to them. Today we asked Beth Watson, a Social Media and Content Marketing Executive with the BSC Marketing team, why the programme was so important to her.

What made you want to join Lead 5050?

I decided to become a member of Lead5050 because I think they play a key role in striving for equality in the International Education Industry. Women are often underrepresented in leadership positions and sometimes suffer from imposter syndrome when they reach the top of their field. On top of this, women are continually underpaid and undervalued in the workplace.

In my own experience, I have sometimes shied away from applying for certain job roles because of a lack of confidence in my abilities and this is something I see time and time again among my female peers. There is a statistic which says that men will often apply to jobs where they meet 60% of the job criteria, whereas women will only apply if they meet 100%. This is something that really resonates with me, and I would love to be part of an organisation that is working to close this gap.

What’s the most exciting project you’ve worked on so far at BSC?

I think the best thing about working for BSC is the sheer variety of projects I get to work on in my day to day, from delivering social media training to writing content for the BSC blog I am always doing something different and that’s really exciting for me. That being said, I think one of the most exciting projects I’ve worked on was a video we made with a former BSC London student who is now the Head Chef of the Sheraton Hotel in Park Lane in London. It was incredible to meet a former student and find out how their time with BSC had helped them not only to settle into life in the UK but also to develop professionally.

What do you most enjoy about working at BSC?

Without a doubt, the best thing about working for BSC is the people. I’m really lucky that the team I work with is incredibly supportive and really open to sharing and exchanging new ideas. Even when we have lot of different projects on the go and are travelling a lot, we still manage to have a lot of fun at the same time and I think that’s extremely important.

What’s been your biggest career success so far?

I’m still at quite an early stage of my career but I think one of the things I’m happiest about was leaving my old job to come and work for BSC. Here, I get to work on such an incredible range of projects and am able to contribute my ideas much more freely. I’ve also managed to develop skills in video production, content planning and creative marketing strategies that I wasn’t able to in my last position.

What drives you in your career?

All of my previous work experience has related to either travel or education and what drives me is the belief that every single person should have the chance to travel, receive an education and expand their mind. I think that’s why I love working for BSC, I love getting to meet students who have found their new home in the UK or have managed to reach their career goals because of the education and life experiences we have provided for them.

Is there a particular woman in business that inspires you? 

If I had to choose a woman in business that inspires me, I would choose the CEO and founder of gal-dem magazine, Liv Little. I find Liv inspirational because, after experiencing racism at Bristol University, she launched her very own magazine written exclusively by women of colour. Three years later and gal-dem has over 70 employees and has been involved in collaborations with the Guardian, the V & A museum, Nike and Channel 4. The magazine also runs a number of youth workshops and offers free copies of the magazine to London state schools. I find the organisation particularly inspiring due to the fact that it pays the London Living Wage to all of its employees and even offers housing support schemes for people who intern with them. In this way, they’ve proven that you don’t need to exploit writers and creatives to succeed in the media industry.

What innovations do you see in the future for BSC?

As we move forward, I see a better integration of social media, video and blogging into the academic curriculum at BSC. I would love to see projects that encourage students take part in in class become not only part of our social media and content strategy but part of the curriculum.

But, aside from technological innovations, I find it really exciting that British Study Centres has committed to being a Real Living Wage Employer. I also see some exciting changes for the company as a whole and I’m really impressed by the steps the company is taking to improve its corporate social responsibility.

If you had one wish for the future, what would it be?

My wish for the future is that we can strive to create a more tolerant world. One where people are encouraged to listen and learn from each other rather than fear people who differ from them.

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