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Meet aspiring PR manager Ashish Gautam

Macleay international student, Ashish Gautam, landed a paid opportunity two days a week at Primary Communications, a strategic PR and Communications firm. 

Set to graduate soon with a Bachelor of Business majoring in Public Relations (while also working nights as a restaurant manager) Ashish Gautam is a busy man. Ashish said he started an internship last year working for a state minister where he wrote private member statements for an MP, researched policies and shadowed the minister to various events. “I never thought as a 22-year-old I’d be working in a political office for a MP or something like that,” he said.

Originally from India, Ashish’s move to Australia for university was his first trip to a foreign country. “I always had a dream to come to Australia to be honest,” he said. “When I was a Year 11 student, there used to be articles that used to mention Sydney.”

“I knew somewhere inside me that I wanted to make something of my life.”

“I was optimistic about my future and I knew I would be somewhere five years down the line,” he said. “Now probably within three years’ time with all my hard work and dedication I’m here.”

Tony Abbott with Bachelor of Business student Ashish Gautam

Former Australian PM Tony Abbott and Ashish Gautam (Photo: Supplied)

Despite a few knock backs, Ashish persevered and landed an intern role, working one day a week over several months. This experience helped him secure his current paid role. “I got my next role because I had that experience working in a political environment,” he said.

“I have learned invaluable things,” Ashish said. “Once my degree is finished and I’m ready to take on a full-time opportunity then I think I will be able to demonstrate my knowledge aligned with my skills in a better way”. Ashish will finally have the opportunity to study on campus this year after Covid-19 threw a spanner in the education works. Despite a pandemic, Ashish is an optimistic person.

Bachelor of Business Student Ashish Gautam

Ashish Gautam at his internship (Photo: Supplied)

“I am fortunate for the kind of opportunities I am getting in this country as an international student,” he said. “I don’t think I would be able to get such opportunities back in my home country.” Ashish said he thinks Macleay has played a very important part in his life, in terms of his studies. He explained that his lecturer, Jeremy Taylor, had been supporting and guiding him throughout his degree. “The fact that a professor or teacher believes in you as a person and believes in your career,” Ashish said. “I think that’s invaluable. But the best thing about Macleay is actually the small classes he added."

“I think the model of Macleay College in terms of not having more than like 25 students in class is great,” he said. “In Australia it’s like 200 students in one class and I wonder how teaches can prioritise their time with each and every student.” Ashish explained that in his first online trimester he appreciated how most of his teachers were ready for a Zoom meeting whenever he needed to talk to them.

“Most of the teachers at Macleay College are very good, very generous, very enthusiastic,” he said. “I don’t want to pick one, but I think I genuinely enjoyed studying with Kathy and Jeremy.” Ashish said he is looking forward to studying more PR-focused courses at Macleay this year.

Bachelor of Business student with former prime minister John Howard

Ashish Gautam and former Australian PM John Howard (Photo: Supplied)

 
 
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