Natasa (Jovanovic) Kuzmanovski
Blackburn College
Communications Lead
UniCredit, Serbia

It was great being a part of the “Blackburn family” for four years. It was not easy being ten thousand miles away from home, but great friends, professors and staff ensured that I never felt like a “foreigner.” On the contrary, I always felt I belonged at Blackburn. I had the opportunity to be a part of the student-managed Work Program, and more important, during my junior and senior year served as the Academic Services Department Manager.

Now 15 years later, I remember invaluable lessons about leading and managing others. Managing a department of 96 workers while in college was very challenging, but the value of what I learned was definitely worth the “pain.” I learned that when it comes to communications and managing people “there is always room to grow.”

Of course I made mistakes and learned a lot. My experience at Blackburn College not only enabled me to obtain a degree and excel in my academic work, but gave me “hands on experience” which helped me develop as a better person and manager. Today, I am in charge of communications of UniCredit in Serbia, a leading European commercial bank with more than 155,000 employees in 20 countries. I am sure that I would not have come so far if I had not made my “first steps” in Blackburn College’s Work Program.