Imagine the most awkward joke you’ve ever heard.
Then imagine hearing it in front of your parents.
Double that awkwardness, then square it, and you might get close to the awkwardness of watching Will Haywood (Buzzfeed Europe Big-Shot) show ‘my first-time’ memes to a bunch of Politicals at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.
There was some laughter, be it extremely awkward laughter, a lot of nervous shuffling and I’m pretty sure someone left the room. So how on earth do you end up in this situation, rubbing shoulders with MPs and Social Media giants alike? Well it’s all part of the FCO “Know Before You Go” student campaign experience.
People usually associate the FCO with embassies, safe-harbour and huge political earthquakes, which of course all fall into their brief, but they also look after the day-to-day safety of British citizens holidaying and travelling abroad, mainly helping them out of what are often quite sticky situations.
I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but prevention is often cheaper than the cure, and the FCO has found over many years that educating people about local customs, laws and what they need to take abroad results in a massive reduction in the amount of problems that Brits face abroad, hence the birth of the ‘Know Before You Go’ campaign.
The campaign is focused on providing citizens with the tools they need to be fully prepared for travel, from explaining how the European Health Insurance Card works to educating the LGBTQ community on differing attitudes and laws across the regions they are looking to visit. As students are renowned travellers it’s only common sense for an area of the campaign to be targeted towards them – and that, of course, is where we come in.
Every year we recruit a crack team of Student Brand Ambassadors with a huge student media contact base, a flare for writing, a personable approach and an ambitious spirit who work to ensure that students on Campus really do know before they go. Our Brand Ambassadors do anything and everything from writing articles, to giving talks and hosting travel themed pub quizzes to get the word out there.
In return not only do they get a great wage, work experience and training at the FCO offices, but they get to rub shoulders with the great and powerful as well as getting useful insider information from those who’ve been lucky enough to progress onto the FCO Graduate Fast Stream Scheme.
So this how I found myself at the Christmas FCO mixer watching the man from Buzzfeed make politicians squirm. But it wasn’t only that that made it a great day out, with insightful predictions on social media trends and an engaging and important speech from James Duddridge MP, it was well worth the journey. After the talks were over and our student team had made their way through all the finger food, it was off for a cheeky drink at the pub to celebrate the campaign successes so far! Until next time then…
If you’ve got any questions about the role or would like to apply click here
Oh, and if you are going abroad, make sure you Know Before You Go