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Maryanne Lineker-Mobberley (BA History of Art & Architecture 2008)


Having graduated from the University of Reading in 2008 with a 2:1 in History of Art and Architecture I decided I wanted to pursue a career in the auction world. Since then I have become the Silver and Jewellery specialist at Halls auction house in Shrewsbury, while also cataloguing various other items including books and object d'art. I am also now in the process of studying towards gaining my FGA and DGA from the Gemmological Association of Great Britain.

Why did you choose to study at the University of Reading?

After visiting Reading during an open day I knew it was the right University for me. Not only did it have a highly commended History of Art department it was, of course, in close proximity to London so I would only be a quick journey away form some of the best galleries and museums in the world!

What was the best bit about living and studying in Reading?

The best thing about studying at Reading was certainly the fact it's a campus based University - it really felt like a community and all the grassy playing fields and woodland felt like a home from home after moving from the countryside. The main town being only a short walk from the campus also meant you could be independent without needing a car.

What top tips would you give to students who are beginning their studies?

Try and do essays in advance - I know University is all about work hard play hard but it's never any fun to be up all night finishing course work while all your housemates go out! Also, savor every moment, three years goes ridiculously fast!

What are you up to now? How did you get there?

When I first left University I always knew I wanted to be in the arts and antiques sector and an auction house seemed like the perfect environment for me. I knew to get into this field I would need to get as much experience as possible so I worked for free for quite a few months at various auction houses. Less than a year later a job came up at Halls (where I have done some work experience) and I was successful. Since then I have worked my way up and have been given additional responsibilities along the way.

What would be your top tips for students interested in working in this sector?

My biggest tip, for working in this sector (and any sector for that matter) would be work experience. It is absolutely invaluable. It may seem an annoyance at first working for free but the contacts and knowledge gained are priceless when it comes to hearing about and applying for jobs in that field. Another top tip, especially if you want to enter the world of antiques and auctions would be to read up in your spare time any specific areas you are interested in e.g. Victorian jewllery or 18th century furniture, any background knowledge of a subject will help you choose the area you want to specialise in. 

How has the University of Reading and the Careers Centre helped in your chosen career path?

The University was always on hand to offer advice on the types of jobs that may be of interest on graduating from your chosen subject and the career fairs were always great to go around with young professional always on hand to tell you how they got into their jobs.

What are your top tips for students graduating this year? What should they be doing to secure the job they want

Firstly - study, study, study - it may be lovely and sunny outside but there will be plenty of time to drink in the beer gardens after the exams. After working so hard for almost three years you don't want to throw it all away by not preparing properly for the finals. Once you've graduated looking for a job is of course most people's priority but for some travelling holds more of an appeal, or perhaps some further education - just make sure whatever you choose to do you enjoy it and when the time comes to find the job of your dreams stick at it and eventually you'll get to where you want to be.

What does the University mean to you and what is your favourite memory?

The University experience and Reading in particular has made me who I am today. Living on your own for the first time can be pretty daunting but the campus community and great new friends made it one of the most enjoyable times of her life. A great memory - Saturday morning coffees on a quiet campus catching up with friends and enjoying the sun. 

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