Debra-Jane Nelson is the Managing Director and Head Event Stylist at Think Mahogany, a creative-forward thinking communications agency.
Find out more about Debra's work, her company and how her time studying at Coventry University helped to establish her own brand, through our Q&A below.
1. How did studying at Coventry University enhance your career?
When I was in Coventry University, I didn’t think for a minute that I would become an entrepreneur. Even though I did not seek direct entrepreneurial advice from my university, the university’s principles have come along with me on my journey. Honesty! The fundamental principle of my business is operating in a culture of honesty. Integrity! Holding in high esteem the moral principles that have nurtured my growth. Accountability! That sense of responsibility has groomed me in becoming liable for my actions. I strongly attribute my intellectual development to what I learned at university. I have been able to apply the business modules to the business processes I have developed for and apply in my company. The IT modules have given me the knowledge I required to be able to create working systems that have enhanced my creativity, information sharing and collaboration amongst users.
2. What is your favourite memory of Coventry?
My favourite memory of Coventry University is one of my life’s most treasured. I made good friends at Coventry University. Over a decade later, I am happy to say some of my closest friends are those that I made in Coventry University. Even though we are all continents apart, thanks to technology we remain just as close. Even if I had nothing, my friends from Coventry and my degrees make it all worth the while.
3. What would you say to a student thinking of studying at here?
Coventry University then is not Coventry University now. I was proud then but I am even more proud now of the university I attended. It has steadily risen up the league table. In 2015 winning University of the Year and Modern University of the Years 2014, 2015 and now 2016. You would be a proud Alumni too. I stayed on to do my MBA after my first degree which goes to tell that Coventry met my academic expectations as an institution. The facilities were appropriate, the motivated, committed and passionate lecturers were accessible, and there was a support system in place to accelerate the knowledge and skill being acquired. Coventry as a town to live in while you study is equally good. It was a safe city, the social life was right, there were part-time jobs available, there was good transportation system, housing was affordable and the people were pleasant.
4. What is your top tip to current students?
Coventry University aimed at providing me with a high-quality education and learning experience. It groomed me to make significant contributions to my previous employers, my current business, this economy, this society. I have become a creative force in this rapidly evolving world. I have impacted many lives, and a few people would confess that I inspired them to start their own businesses. Make the most of the opportunities and resources available to you and use that to create a pleasing future for yourself.
If you are interested in sharing your alumni story with us, please let us know.