BA French and German (2006), Communications Manager at GL Noble Denton.
Rob Coveney joined GL Noble Denton as Communications Manager in 2010 and is involved in an array of marketing and public relations projects across the company. GL Noble Denton is an independent technical adviser to the oil and gas industry. With a presence in over 80 countries, the business applies global best practice in safety, integrity and performance across the lifecycle of its clients’ assets and operations.
Why did you choose Royal Holloway?
“The School of Modern Languages has both a great sense of community and excellent quality of teaching. The members of staff always made me feel that they were there for me, and they would do their utmost to ensure that we were making the best of our studies.
Not only did I learn how to speak French and German well, I also had the opportunity to study areas of linguistics, literature, modern and medieval history, film, philosophy and cultural identity that apply to the countries that French and German are spoken in.
I spent no less time learning the German or French language than any student who studied those languages as single degrees. The only difficulty for me came in deciding whether to spend my year abroad in a French-speaking country, a German-speaking country, or both!"
How did your time at Royal Holloway help your future career?
"In my first year at Royal Holloway I joined the German Society and became its President during my second year. I had great fun working with the committee arranging trips to Germany and beer tasting evenings, and thought that it would be good to get more involved. I ended up joining a Students’ Union committee that looked after all societies on campus.
During my time working with the Students’ Union, I was called by the Sunday Times for an interview. That was my first experience of talking directly to the media so I contacted the University’s Press Office to get some advice. They were really helpful and I thought I could make an exciting career in helping companies manage their reputations within the media."
What advice would you give students thinking about a career in PR?
"My advice to students interested in a career in PR is not to take it lightly. It looks like a fairly glamorous career choice (it certainly did to me) but it is very hard work. During the first year or two of entering into a PR role, I had to do a lot of grunt work, which I hated at the time!
Now I recognise that it needs to be done and if you are serious about doing it then you have to stick those couple of years out. I found the Careers Service at Royal Holloway really helpful - I got great help and access to graduates who had developed a career in PR and could offer some good advice."