A year at TIAS: Interview with Julian Rawel

November 22, 2018 | 2 min read

Recently, we got together with Julian Rawel, lecturer of Marketing in the Service Economies at TIAS to discuss his background, TIAS and the Netherlands.

1. Where are you from and what led you to a career in Education?

I am from the UK. I actually started off as an entrepreneur and after about twenty years of running my own tour operating company, working in museum development and working in consultancy, I was asked by Bradford University in the UK to run some courses, which is how I got into education. It was something that I had always found interesting.

2. What do you do outside of TIAS?

I teach at other business schools, I teach in about 7 to 8 different countries at the moment. I mainly teach at MBA, MSc and Executive Master Leve. In addition, I am currently the director of MBA at the University of Edinburgh and write about education. Finally, I run my own consultant company, Market Echoes. This of course means that I am very busy, but I am definitely doing what I love and that makes the work load a lot lighter.

3. How is TIAS different to other universities/business schools you teach at?

Business schools in general are very similar to one another. However, what sets TIAS apart from other business schools and universities are the high level of customer service and the future career support offered here. Students notice this too and this is something that we often receive feedback on during our module evaluations.

4. What do you like about TIAS and teaching here?

The students are very interesting. It’s always interesting to meet the different groups of students each year, because even after teaching the same module 10 times the group still changes, making the module and class very different each time. In addition, students are very serious at TIAS, even more so than some of the executive students I teach at other universities. They work hard and all strive for good grades. The diversity in students, both in nationalities and gender, is also a great feature of the students at TIAS. I also very much like the staff at TIAS, they are always willing to help and are great colleagues to work with. I have known some of them for a very long time now as I have been connected to TIAS for a long time. I have also been coming to Utrecht for about 17 years now and absolutely love the city. In my opinion, it’s the most attractive city in the Netherlands.

5. According to you, what do students enjoy most about the Marketing in the Services Economy module that you teach?

This is really something that you should be asking the students! But in my opinion they very much like seeing something different when it comes to marketing, which is why we came up with Marketing in the Services Economy. Most of the students have previously followed some marketing courses and feel like they already know a lot about marketing, but this offers them something different. In addition, the course is extremely practical, which they enjoy. Currently the students are on their 6th piece of practical work already and all the pieces are marked. They want to be doing things, rather than listening to a lecturer and allowing them to work in groups is a great exercise. They key to a good module is keeping it fast-moving, otherwise their minds will wander off and they won’t be able to learn as much as they should.

6. What do you enjoy most about Utrecht and the Netherlands?

I’ve been working in the Netherlands since I set up a company here in 1981, so I’ve travelled to the Netherlands an awful lot. What I like about the Netherlands is the fact that it’s very easy to get everywhere as the train connections are pretty good. Dutch people might not think they are, but compared to England they are excellent. Communication here is good as well. Utrecht is a very nice city. There are plenty of pubs and restaurants to have a drink at or something to eat. There are also many nice places for walking around. As long as you understand that the Dutch are probably twice as tall as you and very direct you will be fine here.
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