Venezuelan father-of-two, Bernardo Rodriguez (34), is to graduate with a MSc in Corporate Communication and Public Affairs (CCPA), with Distinction, on Thursday 9 December at 2.30pm.
Bernardo, who is married to Bianca and has two sons aged 6 and 4, decided to embark on his studies in a bid to improve his family’s prospects. Despite the distance from his homeland, Bernardo was determined to study this particular course at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen for a number of reasons: “Firstly, the nature of the course perfectly suited my professional goals. That combined with its CIPR (Chartered Institute of Public Relations) accreditation and RGU’s excellent reputation made the decision an easy one.”
Bernardo made a further brave move by financing his studies independently. He says, “I had to endure significant personal sacrifices, including the sale of family assets and a year-long separation from my wife and two young boys, which was a very tough thing to bear. My wife had to carry on with all the domestic duties, while also supporting me during my time in Aberdeen, in addition to holding down her day job.”
Bernardo, who is from Ciudad Guayana in the South-east of the country made the most of all the opportunities afforded him during his time in Aberdeen. As well as achieving distinction in his modules, he was presented with the Student Representative Award 2009-2010. He even found the time to start teaching himself to play the guitar! “My professional horizons really broadened and I’m keen to harness the power of everything I learned in the course. This was a truly enriching experience, one that has made me more open to alternative points of view and to other ways of understanding the world,” he said.
Bernardo particularly enjoyed his work placement, which took place at the Aberdeen Council of Voluntary Organisations (ACVO). The experience made him realise that he could successfully develop his skills and liaise in an English-speaking environment, which was especially important for him, coming from an almost exclusively Spanish-speaking country.
He concluded, “My graduation is a precious, collective achievement. I consider my future to be very much open to new prospects and plans. Even though I returned to my job as a Communications Officer in Venezuela after finishing the course, I am now reconsidering my career path. Right now I am in search of a new and exciting career opportunity to apply my recently acquired skills in new environments and circumstances, anywhere in the world.”
Robert Gordon University
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