Pathways to International Trade Case Study: Q&A with alumni Brandon Foo

For Pathways to International Trade's fifth Anniversary, we catch up with alumni to hear about their experience with the programme and how they have been doing since. This week we talk to Brandon Foo, Masters student in Business Analytics at Cass Business School and PTIT alumni, as part of our Q&A series.

Tell us a bit about what you have been doing since PTIT.

After PTIT, I graduated from the University of Exeter with a bachelor's degree in Economics. After graduation, I went on to work for a tech startup as a setup manager before deciding to pursue an MSc in Business Analytics at Cass Business School to broaden my programming skillset.

Why did you decide to participate in Pathways to International Trade? What interests you about international trade?

I have always been interested in the opportunities presented by international trade. Prior to this programme, I interned for a food & beverage company in their international sales department, where my interest in international trade began.

I have always found the market research element to be challenging given the limitations of data sources and the language barrier between different countries. As such, I decided to participate in the Pathways to International Trade programme to widen my exposure and knowledge in this industry.

How has the PTIT programme benefitted you?

I heard about the PTIT programme over the University’s weekly newsletter and decided to apply right away. Having completed the programme, I was able to attain the market research skills that I was looking for. Also, I had the opportunity to help a local company expand their sales reach into China.

I thought the content of the PTIT programme was very engaging and structured. I liked how the first week consisted of comprehensive training before the second week, in which we had our internship and could actually apply those skills and that knowledge on the programme's partner companies.

Do you have any career advice for those interested in pursuing a career in international trade, international marketing and/or international business?

Work experience is your best friend. In order to really learn more about the industry, having first-hand experience through working; be it an internship, placement or graduate scheme, is definitely the most practical way to learn more and succeed in your field.

What are some of your highlights from the programme?

My highlights from the PTIT programme were the final presentation and the short internship that came after our training. I enjoyed these two parts because they were very practical. In the final presentation, we created a market entry strategy and in the internship, we created a market research report. In both experiences, we worked with companies from the South West of the UK and this was a great way to work with the local community.