Building broader and diving deeper with advanced learning after university. Meet Neil.
Neil Farrugia’s enthusiasm for digital marketing was fired up during his university degree and he found himself hungry for further practical learning opportunities. Recognising the advantage of nurturing a diverse skill set, he threw himself into online live learning with the Graphic Designer Associate course and the Photography & Photo Manipulation Techniques Course, before taking up the challenge of the Digital Marketing Expert course. This is his story.
I found my university degree very interesting and was particularly drawn to the Marketing side of the course. The only thing was that I found the curriculum to be quite heavy on theory and not very applied in terms of real-world practice. I was aware there was a lot more to learn in terms of new industry trends and actual practical skills, so I was very open to the idea of further education.
During COVID, I had a lot of free time at home and decided to put it to use learning new skills and exploring things I didn’t normally have time to study in detail. I started browsing graphic design guides on YouTube and decided I wanted to dedicate more time to the subject; then, from researching and Googling graphic design courses, ICE Malta’s Graphic Designer Associate course popped up, and I decided to enrol.
I started with virtually zero experience and the course provided a great introduction to the field of graphic design. The online live learning platform was ideal during the pandemic and provided an extra level of flexibility for me whilst working shifts, and I appreciated the fact that the classes were still highly practical and interactive. My experience with the graphic design course was very positive and inspired me to enrol for the Photography & Photo Manipulation Techniques course afterwards.
My present work in marketing and content does not specifically draw on my design or photography skills, but that’s not to say it’s not worth having a broad portfolio of skills. Understanding design makes it easier for me to communicate with other team members, anticipate their needs, and express myself artistically. Moreover, the fact that I have certified design and photo skills on my CV also makes me a more versatile candidate for future roles where they might be needed.
I had considered staying on to complete a Masters in Marketing when I completed my university degree and was always keen on the idea of further education. Unfortunately however, the course structure didn’t really appeal to me, so I had reasoned it was better to wait and see if other opportunities for advanced study would crop up in future.
I first heard about the postgraduate Digital Marketing Expert course when I saw Julia’s video about her experience with ICE. I reached out to her and my research confirmed that this was exactly the kind of course I’d been hoping to find: industry-accredited, practical, and oriented towards real-world digital marketing environments.
This course offered a whole new level of flexibility that made it much more convenient and enjoyable than other courses I’d considered. Although it encompassed a huge range of content and there was a lot of detail to work through, the fact that there were no artificial deadlines or attendance pressures meant that I could focus on learning at my own pace. Because of this, I found the workload very manageable, even whilst working full-time.
Personally, I liked the fact that it was an assignment-based course. The experience of building out a real-world case study felt much more relevant and fulfilling than simply passing an exam, and I think that’s crucial when it comes to advanced learning. By considering things on a more strategic level, the assignments encourage you to take a more holistic, in-depth perspective on digital marketing and how it delivers real results for specific brands.
I’ve actually already recommended the postgraduate course to a friend! I think it is imperative for anyone working full-time in digital marketing to constantly be on the lookout for opportunities to expand their skills and to stay up to date with industry trends. It also is fascinating that since we are in constant contact with Digital Marketing, I am now able to make sense of why certain ads, banners, and other aspects are shown the way they are. This course is structured to teach you the more advanced aspects of digital marketing whilst also pushing you to take the initiative when it comes to applying those skills and forming strategy around the bigger picture.