Where did you study?
University of Cumbria
What did you Study?
BA (Hons) Graphic Design
What year did you Graduate?
So we can feel more intimate, three words to describe your physical appearance.
Tall, dark, hairy.
What did you do when you left Uni? Be brutally honest! If you cried into a bowl of cereal every morning & treated your local pub like your favourite Uni nightclub, say so.
Initially I was back at my parent’s house for about three weeks, frantically looking for work or internships, as I wanted to move out as soon as possible and get some experience in London. I was fortunate I got a number of interviews through an exhibition I did at University, which led to a couple of internships in the capital.
Some girls from my course were renting a house in London and said there was a spare room going, which I boldly took. My first internship was paid, but my second was just expenses, so I didn’t have the money and had to borrow money from my parents. I was told that I would be getting a job at the end of my last internship, however, after six weeks the company told me they could no longer afford to do this, but employed two of the guys on the same internship, prioritized because they started a week before. This was upsetting and very irritating, considering I had kept on going, unpaid, because of the promise of a job.
So I was back to frantically looking for a job again, which was a very difficult time and extremely stressful. I claimed job seekers allowance and continued to borrow money from my parents, so aside from being desperate to stay in London I really wanted to repay the faith they showed in me. I became a total recluse, spending all day and night looking and applying for job vacancies, while my flat mates went out and came back drunk, a feeling that I craved! In hindsight I should have given myself more of a break. However, I succeeded a number of interviews and eventually, after two months and at a time where I had no choice but to move back home, I got offered a job.
What are you doing now and how long do you see yourself doing it for? Are you in your dream job? If not yet, what is this?
I work for Youth Music Theatre UK as their in-house Graphic and Web Designer. I get to upload videos of alumni Ed Sheeran and Charlotte Ritchie! I am enjoying it a lot, mainly because the people are amazing – it’s a small, close knit team, but I see it as a stepping-stone, as I eventually want to work for a Graphic Design Agency.
Do you think Uni has helped you to be where you are now?
It did in terms of starting me off – I was offered a couple of internships from an exhibition in London which was through Uni and which eventually helped to secure interviews.
Though it did not prepare me for the pace of the working world and various technical issues like setting up artwork to print. You definitely need to have work experience in order to get a real taste of working in a design studio.
Any advice for graduates who aren’t yet in their dream jobs or still battling against this rubbish economy for just an interview?
Just stick at it. I know it is very difficult to get motivated if you are constantly getting rejected, but I found persevering and having a positive attitude eventually leads to success. If you go into every application with the belief you will get an interview, you are going to find selling yourself and giving the relevant information a lot easier when you are writing applications. I always believe if you put the hard work in, you will eventually get the rewards. I think I have demonstrated that…
Finally, if you would be so kind, tell us briefly about your day ahead – just in case we might want to change our career path.
I’m currently at home with my family for Easter eating cheesecake and watching crap TV!
That’s it. Stuart, you have been wonderful.