MSc Computing graduate, Ricky Callaghan, discusses how a Masters degree through a User Experience Pathway at Edinburgh Napier University helped him kickstart his dream career.
Tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Ricky Callaghan, I studied Msc Computing through a User Experience Pathway and now I work as a Senior UX Consultant.
What were you doing before your Masters?
I studied computing at college and had a good network of support, but after a couple of modules, I decided it wasn't what I wanted to do with my life. I ended up going down a totally different path and I went to study Music instead. During my second year, I decided to switch again and do Music with Business. I went on to pass second year, third year and did most of fourth year, but in the end it was too much for me. I then became van driver, then a graphic designer and finally a manager for a few years.
When COVID-19 hit, I lost my job at the end of it all, but at the time when I was working for a print shop, I was doing a lot of printing for conferences specifically. I realised it was all User Experience (UX) related. I then began watching UX conferences, listening to experts and thinking, "Oh, that is really interesting."
What did you enjoy most about your Masters?
I enjoyed the breadth of material covered within the UX pathway for MSc Computing. There was a great selection of modules covering many topics that are required to make sure a successful graduate is employable at the end of the 12-month course.
What Opportunities did a Masters open for you?
The lecturers really promoted having conversations about what you were doing during and after study, which again, prepares you much better for when you have to work as a team. The pathway gets you ready to be involved in everything. It covers a lot of topics, and it helped me land my current job as a UX Consultant. I've always wanted to work for myself and I've been very fortunate to be further along in my career than I was hoping to be at this time.
The 2-3 year plan has happened in 2-3 months. It's onwards and upwards from here.