We sat down with Peace, Pearson Business School student, to discuss her experience of the Microsoft and EDI Diversity Festival.

Could you give an overview of the event?

I had the pleasure of attending the Diversity and Inclusion Microsoft BAME event that took place two weeks ago.

On arrival, we were welcomed with drinks whilst waiting to check in to the event, which was really nice as this gave us a chance to network with other students. We were then split into groups for the day and had the pleasure of hearing from a panel that consisted of a range of professionals from within Microsoft, including a question-and-answer session with them.

Jennifer Achiro, who works within recruitment at Microsoft, also shared tips about what Microsoft look for throughout their recruitment process. On top on this we had a break where we were served chicken, patties and other cultural snacks.

Towards the end of the day, we were lucky enough to meet the deputy mayor, Rajesh Agrawal who left us with someone encouraging words.

What did you do at the event?

At the event, we were given a “PowerApps” challenge to create our own app using some Microsoft software. The winning team was a group of students from Pearson College London! They came up with such a unique idea of creating a Microsoft Academy - an app that provided training to help people learn Microsoft software. The winning team got a VIP Microsoft experience.

What did you enjoy the most about the event?

I enjoyed EVERYTHING! But the thing I enjoyed most about the event was hearing Jennifer Achiro speak because it was something I could relate to so much coming from a similar background, so to hear her story and her journey as to how she got to where she is now was very inspiring.

I also enjoyed the food because it was not just like normal finger foods, the event aimed to include cultural foods from the BAME background.
And lastly but not least, the best thing that I loved was that there were so many ethnic minorities coming together to do something good which allowed us to able to feel like a part of something.

What did you find most beneficial about the event?

I think the panel talk was very beneficial because it allowed all of the BAME students to see successful professionals who came from similar backgrounds as them. It makes students believe that they can achieve so much, all while being themselves.

Did you learn anything on the day that could support your studies?

I learnt that if you want to do well in something to need to have that passion for it and go an extra step further to gain that understanding and knowledge surrounding that area.

Also, I learnt that failure happens in life, it’s about whether or not you decide to learn from that failure and how you get back up.

What did you take away from the day overall?

The one thing that stood with me the most is that it’s okay to be yourself! A lot of the time we have this perception that in order to fit into these large and successful corporations we have to look or sound a certain way. But everyone is unique and has something different to offer so the best person to be is just yourself.

Blog written by Peace Oni.