School of Business and Economics


Sweta Sakapal

The Loughborough MBA with Internship

Loughborough MBA with Internship graduate Sweta from India shares her experiences of her MBA studies and her professional internship with United Airlines.

sweta sakapal

How did your journey to Loughborough begin, what attracted you to the School of Business and Economics?

It is a funny journey and so true to the saying that what is meant for you will come to you. While I was searching for an MBA programme Loughborough was not on my list of Universities. My counsellor mentioned about Loughborough specially that it came with a very unique Internship programme which very few Universities in the UK offer. What attracted me the most were some interesting modules; like leading Strategic Change, Problem Solving for Leaders, Managing Innovation, ESSAM (European Summer School in Advanced Management). I found them very practical which would be useful in day to day work life.

What were you doing before in your home country and why did you decide to do an MBA in the UK?

I was working with Johnson and Johnson, India as a marketing associate. The decision to do an MBA was because of career stagnation and the desire to experience international education and what better than The Loughborough MBA? The programme also has an Internship route (2-year programme) that allowed me to be exposed to an international work culture.

What attracted you to come to the UK for your MBA with Internship at Loughborough and what did enjoy about the programme?

I had a management degree in my home country, but times are changing, it was time for me to move on to expanding my knowledge with subject areas that were more practical. Loughborough had some good modules that would develop my leadership skills. I enjoyed working with cohorts from diverse cultures during group projects and our exchange of ideas, there is so much to learn from everyone. Time management was a challenge since the programme was intense, but that is what I learnt – to prioritise things. From different course exercises and experiences, I learnt which areas I needed to improve, such as, learning how say no and how to take a stand for your views. Another challenge was securing an internship, but I thoroughly enjoyed the process it taught me resilience and was rewarding in the end when I secured my internship at United Airlines.

Please describe your experiences undertaking the two-year programme with internship.

I did my internship in Marketing with United Airlines for the UK team. It was a phenomenal learning experience. Having experienced a diverse cohort on The Loughborough MBA, the transition to work was smooth and I was working with people from different countries. I got an opportunity to work on both B2B and B2C marketing communication like newsletters, marketing campaigns, trade events also an exposure to digital marketing, influencer marketing, email marketing and concepts like social selling. I learnt marketing approach in service industry. I was fortunate to have worked with a lovely team who were so supportive and fun to work with. I also got an opportunity to participate in their business resource group events, and to take part in the London Pride march, representing United.

In terms of career transformation, how has The Loughborough MBA helped you to achieve your goals?

The MBA has widened my scope of career transformation and gives me an opportunity to progress into a generalist profile, which I intend to pursue rather than a specialised one, such as just marketing or operations. I am now seeking more of planning and strategy profile.

How do the skills you acquired in your MBA programme help you in your everyday job?

The most important skill that I acquired was time management and prioritising work. As I was working in a service industry, it has helped me immensely to get my work done in an organised and timely manner to achieve the goals that were set.

Since the organisation’s culture is very diverse, all the group work done during the MBA helped me to work in teams at work.

Any advice for future MBA students?

Come with an open mind to embrace all the challenges that the course offers, you will definitely gain in the long term. Do not expect short term gains. It is an excellent opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and explore a new side to yourself that you are not aware of. Embrace and learn.

How would you sum up your Loughborough MBA experience?

I have thoroughly enjoyed The Loughborough MBA programme. It gave me an opportunity to explore my strengths and identify areas I needed to improve. It has changed the way I think about a situation or a problem. I definitely have a better approach of looking at things now. The ESSAM module helped me to develop an understanding on world issues. I also liked the way management is taught with various engagement tools e.g. we had an exercise called “Mount Everest Challenge” which effectively taught us how important teamwork was. The internship for me was the icing on the cake!

What was the overall study and student life experience like at Loughborough University?

Firstly, the campus is amazing and so resourceful like a town within a town, there is so much support for students, so you feel at home. There is always so many opportunities to participate in countless activities that take place on campus.

I thoroughly enjoyed the study and student life, since no day was the same for me there was always new way to learn and absorb.

The careers network and support is exceptional. I remember not missing a single workshop, they offered guidance in resume/CV building, mock interviews and networking, which helped me immensely in securing an Internship. My best memories are the ones spent with my MBA cohort studying, as well as enjoying our little get-togethers and BBQ’s. Very fond memories.

What did you enjoy about Loughborough town?

In my memory it is a sweet little humble town, very peaceful and resourceful for the student community. The cost of living is very reasonable, and accommodation is easily available, especially near to the university. The town’s transportation is very convenient. Shopping facilities and supermarkets are within walking distance. I loved going to weekend market. The general feel of the town is vibrant, mainly because of the student community.