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Welcome Back, Harriet!


We were delighted to welcome for a visit Harriet Matthews, a 2017 Leaver who has just graduated from Edinburgh with a 1st in Geography and is about to begin a graduate management traineeship with Unilever. Harriet was able to catch up with some of the teaching staff who were a huge influence on her, like Carol Cook, Head of Geography who has recently undertaken the mantle of Head of Humanities. She spoke with College I Geographers about her A-Levels and getting through exams (Harriet achieved A* A* A* A*) and she caught up with Ruby, a College Leader who was in Year 7 when Harriet was in College II; they immediately recognised each other!

I vividly recall being in College having a talk from a Mount Old Scholar who had come in to visit, she had just finished university and started working in a very prestigious graduate management trainee role. She was everything that I wanted to be when I grew up; she was confident and successful, and spoke so articulately to us all about her experiences. She talked about the process of applying for internships while at university and getting graduate jobs. That’s what inspired me, when I started uni, to begin exploring that route. I always had her in the back of mind, knowing that hers was a path I also wanted to take. If I’d not had that initial inspiration from her, I maybe would not have had the confidence to explore such options. It’s lovely to see how little things that happened at The Mount really paved the way for my future life,” said Harriet.

In September I will start a 3-year graduate programme with Unilever in the Marketing scheme. I’ll have three different placements over three years, one in a global role, and two in national roles. Those three roles will give me a massive breadth of the company and then I’ll be given a management role. It’s called the Future Leaders programme. It’s such a great opportunity for a job that will challenge me. It’s nice to finish uni and know that I have doors opening,” she said.

Harriette with her former teachers

Reflecting on what a difference The Mount made, Harriet said, “I was at a mixed school for GCSE and when I moved to The Mount, I found that an all-girls’ education was definitely an environment which allowed me to excel. For me personally, it’s just a completely different way of educating a girl (to a co-ed) environment, and it’s really the reason that I thrived.