PARROTT, Patricia Ann (2022) Bourdieu and Brand-Me: Agri-food Higher Education students’ experiences of securing industrial placements and employment, and through personal branding strategies. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.
This thesis relates to the field of student placement and explores the strategies that higher education (HE) students use to secure industrial placement employment in the agri-food sector. Brand-Me is the collective of a person’s online and offline presence. Digital technologies and how students choose their self-presentations online has blurred the lines between personal and professional. This presents a challenge for HE students in managing their digital footprint. A Bourdieusian lens (Bourdieu, 1977) and conceptual tools of habitus, capital and field was used to shed light on the practice of placement seeking and the ownership of students in shaping their Brand-Me. The role the Placement Manager plays as ‘referee’ is a vital link in assisting the students seeking placements and the transition of student to placement employment. Qualitative in-depth interviews with students, university staff, and employers (n= 15, 7, and 2 respectively) were undertaken using Rich Pictures to support the interviews. This visual qualitative approach provided a close generation of insights and semiotic resources for data analysis and framework for self-reflection. Students showed differing approaches to consideration of Brand-Me based on their concern for managing their digital footprint and showed a desire to convey a ‘hardworking’ and neoliberal self for the social logic of the field. The research uncovered how family habitus influenced placement seeking, career envisioning and geographical mobility with the misleading conceptualisations of a student as being freely single. Female students showed how the masculine dominated habitus and hegemony in the agricultural rural sector had shaped their consideration of Brand-Me. This provides a contribution to the conceptual construction of rural gender identities and how students adopt chameleon like strategies to fit-in with their surroundings. The use of Rich Pictures with individuals also provided a novel structure of reflection for employability in career support services and in consideration of Brand-Me.
|Item Type:||Thesis (Doctoral)|
|Award:||Doctor of Education|
|Keywords:||Bourdieu, Brand-Me, Placement employment, personal branding, rural habitus.|
|Faculty and Department:||Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Education, School of|
|Copyright:||Copyright of this thesis is held by the author|
|Deposited On:||16 May 2022 13:27|