By Rebecca Hawksworth

UCFB student Alex Southern has been branching out in the football and sports industry by taking on work experience within the media department at Queens Parks Rangers.

A BA (Hons) Football Business & Finance programme student, Alex aims to one day work within the media and communications department of a football club and has been getting a feel for that part of the industry at the Championship club.

After utilising some of his existing contacts within the industry to land his placement at the London side, Alex had a whole variety of responsibilities to carry out while on his placement.

He said: “I obtained my work experience from my contact Andy Daykin who is the former commercial director at several clubs, including Sheffield United and Sheffield Wednesday, and he put me in touch with QPR’s chief executive, Lee Hoos.”

Alex added: “I worked across a variety of departments including commercial, media and communications and ticketing. I wrote a variety of articles which were published on the club’s website and in the match day programme. I also printed and distributed tickets to fans for upcoming away matches, and researched and developed ideas to improve fan engagement with young fans.”

As part of his time at QPR, Alex had the opportunity to work in the press box for one of the club’s home fixtures, giving him an insight into what life is like behind the scenes on a match day.

Alex said: “Being invited to spend time with the media department during a home fixture was a definite highlight for me. It was really insightful to witness their role during a match day. Also having the ability to conduct the tasks which I did and be given the freedom to show my skills was excellent.”

Alex went on to speak of how his experience with QPR has been beneficial in helping him understand the running of a football club and expanding his connections within the football industry. He said: “I now understand what it takes to run a professional football club on a day to day basis. I learnt how the club distributes information to fans through social media as well as the key responsibilities of the media team on match-days.”

Alex added: “My overall career ambition is to work within a professional football club in the media and communications department so this work experience was invaluable for me. The opportunity gave me an extensive contact list which will hopefully allow me to undertake further opportunities going forward.”