Savoy Taylors Guild store manager Ahmed Khan graduated from BA (Hons) Fashion Business (Part time) with a first last year and says the course has helped to further his career.
I took the four-year part-time course for two main reasons: I wanted to be able to gain work experience on the shop floor while I studied for my qualification; and I wanted to earn money to fund the course by working full-time.
When I started the course, I was a sales assistant at Gieves and Hawkes at their concession in Selfridges department store on Oxford Street. I worked there four days a week alongside my studies for one year and then with Moss Bros for three years at their bespoke concept store in Liverpool Street.
During my studies I was still being promoted at work, first to supervisor, then department manager, then assistant manager and now I’m a store manager at Savoy Taylors Guild, part of the Moss Bros Group and responsible for £5million turnover in Bicester Village.
At times it was very tough doing the course alongside work, especially at the end as I was getting more pressure and responsibility while the stress of studying and project work was increasing at university, but I got this job as a result of my qualification and ambition so it was very worthwhile in the end.
I graduated last July and it was great, my mum and dad and partner and her mum came along. There was a nice camaraderie between all of us who made it through to the end of the course. The tutors were a great support, especially Paul Buckle who runs the buying and merchandising module.
Having decided I would like to spend my whole career working in this industry, the best thing about this course was being able to do it alongside working. It meant that any new theory or techniques I learnt on the course, I was often able to apply in industry straight away and new things I learnt from industry were often used to support my uni project work.
Aside from the qualification, the experience I gained and the contacts I made while on this course allowed me to grow and develop myself a lot as a person and as a retailer.