As the first member of her family to go to university, Amanda Gregory fully appreciates the liberating power of higher education.
She is also aware that the wrong choice can be both financially and emotionally crippling.
"Going to university made a huge difference to me. It opened up so many avenues. But it is now even more expensive than when I went, and having the information to make the right choice is so important," Gregory said.
It is this understanding that she is bringing to her role as commercial director of hotcourses.com - the United Kingdom's largest adult education website.
Before joining hotcourses, Gregory was head of Teletext Education, where she was responsible for launching Teletext's internet education service, Campus.
Now Gregory will be helping to develop the United Kingdom's most comprehensive online database of courses, which aims to have every major conurbation in the UK covered by the end of the year. The company is working with Universities and Colleges Admissions Service in developing its service.
The site allows users to search for their chosen subject, institutions offering the subject and availability of places. It provides detailed information, including start dates, the duration of the course, the curriculum and reviews of courses by former and participating students.
Gregory said: "Today, education is about providing opportunities to acquire knowledge throughout life, from wherever you find yourself.
"At the moment, 20 per cent of inquiries being lodged on our website come from international students."
Hotcourses.com was launched in June and was formerly known as On Course Publications.