IOE and IT student interview: Irina Shmakova, trade adviser, DIT

Fri 2 Dec 2022
Posted by: Richard Cree

Irina Shmakova - IOE&IT student interview

Irina Shmakova is an export academy adviser at the Department for International Trade (DIT). Speaking at the recent Graduation Ceremony at Mansion House, Shmakova told the Daily Bulletin that the course she recently completed with IOE&IT had been instrumental in her developing career in trade.

“I was working for the events department at DIT and this course helped me get a better understanding of international trade. I started with a foundation course, which was diploma level 4 and that included all elements of different disciplines, such as marketing, logistics and distribution, customs, legislation and everything to do with the overall framework of international trade.”

It took Shmakova two years to complete the course, but she says it was definitely worth it, not least because on completing the course she got a promotion, to her current role as an export academy adviser.

“I still work within DIT in a different role and the course really helped me get the new job. I have been eagerly waiting for this graduation, because it is a very exciting moment.”

Shmakova says she talks to lots of colleagues about the IOE&IT course, adding that she knows a couple of people from her former department who have just started the same course she has just completed.

Her own interest in trade predates her time with DIT, as she explains: “I lived abroad for quite a long time, including a time in West Africa. So I had an understanding of international trade and global sales. The course really helped to crystalise things for me and allow me to see the bigger picture. As I speak to companies in my current role, it has also helped me to understand their situation better.

“I strongly recommend potential students talk to the IOE&IT about this course. And I also encourage the companies I speak to take up IOE&IT membership because it is a massive help to all traders – both existing exporters and those who are thinking about starting to export.”