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    Unbelievably, it’s been over a month since my last post. They are dead serious in saying time flies by (‘them’ being a popular saying). In a lot of respects it seems like only a few weeks ago that 2014 was kicking off and Christmas decorations were still spread around town. Now summer is upon us and term has been rather… irregular, to say the least. I’ve missed more classes than I have attended and even received a formal notification of my prolonged absence, ending up in a rather alarming albeit soft threat of removal from the programme should I miss any more lectures. Yet despite the tumultuous start, I am back to thoroughly enjoying the programme.

    Yes, there are flaws - there always are - and aspects that could be improved (some guest lecturers come to mind), but overall I am really into this module. Unsurprising perhaps as this is really my module, my functional area, my bread and butter. That being the case I suppose the main criticism would be that while I am fully engaged with the subject, we are not really delving into any marketing concepts or theory - it’s all very introductory, so nothing has actually been new  this term. Notwithstanding, I’ve been completely immersed in the module’s assignments.

    We don’t have exams this term, but two pieces of coursework instead. Our first assignment, a literature review, was due a couple of weeks ago, and even though it only amounts to 25% of the final grade, even that awareness didn’t deter me this time. I’m not claiming I’ve done extremely well in this piece of work - we haven’t received any markings so far - but rather that the research didn’t feel at all like a hassle and the final piece was quite straightforward and pleasant to write.

    Our second piece of coursework is due at the end of this month and involves structuring a marketing plan for increasing matchday attendances of a sports club of choice. My cup of tea - white, no sugar. I started early on - before I’d even turned in the first assignment I settled on a football club, established contact and set up a meeting with their marketing department. Nothing quite like lower league clubs to come across a handful of good willed individuals.

    I’ve been very proactive in my research and, coupled with data from the meeting and supporting documents supplied, it’s been an absolute delight. Putting it all together in only 3,500 words will be quite the challenge, but I have 3 solid weeks to put pen to paper and produce a decent report that will hopefully also be of some value to the club that’s been so accessible and cooperative to date. It’ll be interesting trying to find that balance between an academic paper and a working report that can, in some degree, be put to practice.

    As for all the absences? Almost exclusively work-related - business abroad and conferences/awards on home turf - but also personal matters on the one occasion. The ever increasing workload does take its toll day in, day out, and the World Cup kicking off in just over a week’s time won’t exactly help matters, but this term the work-Uni balance seems to have been restored by the common passion of what I do in the office and in the classroom.


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