Dr Annabelle Sara Redfern
Current Employer/Organisation Name
What have you been doing since leaving Exeter, and what are you doing now?
I graduated from Exeter with a BA in English Literature and then worked for PwC as a graduate trainee in audit. After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, I continued working for PwC as an audit manager, specialising in the media industry and due diligence work. Following a career break to raise my children, I returned to academia. At the University of Bristol, I obtained a BSc in Experimental Psychology, an MSc in Research Methods, and a PhD in Psychology. For several years, I worked as a post-doctoral researcher in the University of Bristol School of Psychological Sciences, before being headhunted for my current role in academic publishing.
Why did you choose this career? And what do you enjoy most about your work?
Throughout my career, I have enjoyed the variety of work (where no two days are the same) and that I’m constantly learning new skills. I like being part of the academic community and working with interesting and inspiring colleagues.
Please tell us if you were a member of any societies, groups or sports clubs?
I played intramural netball and non-competitive squash.
What did you enjoy most about your programme and what was the biggest highlight?
The greatest highlight was the field trip to Stratford-upon-Avon, where we spent several days attending plays and taking workshops with actors. This memorably brought to life the Restoration and Shakespearean plays I had studied, and instilled in me a lifelong passion for historical drama. I also loved the Radio Drama course, in which a group of us wrote and produced a radio play that was broadcast by BBC Bristol.
What did you enjoy most about studying here?
I liked the social aspect of living in Halls in the first year, and the accessibility of the campus. The library was an excellent place to study, and I felt fully supported by my department and its staff throughout my degree.
Why did you choose to study at Exeter?
The course was excellent. As a Russell Group university, Exeter has an excellent reputation for its research. Moreover, the city is in a stunning location, close to beautiful beaches and countryside.
What skills and experiences have been most useful for your career?
IT skills have been essential. I learnt to code during my PhD, and would not have had the confidence to tackle this had it not been for IT skills honed during my accountancy training. Communication skills (writing, structuring an argument, giving presentations) are transferable to any job and are therefore essential. I have found that the evaluation skills I developed during my first degree, have continued to serve me well in most tasks I perform.
What advice would you give to a current student who wishes to pursue your career?
Don’t limit yourself to thinking that there is one career for you. Be bold enough to move onto trying something new if it feels right.
What are your plans for the future?
My plan is to continue to do my job to the best of my ability, and keep my mind open to the possibility of new work opportunities should they come my way.