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University

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Studying Drama at The University of Manchester has been one of the most challenging experiences of my life. That being said, it has also shown me where exactly I want my life to go. Studying any degree comes with it’s challenges. For example, finding a balance between earning money and studying whilst wanting to involve yourself in extra activities is almost impossible. However, the drama department at The University of Manchester really care about accommodating for your needs. This isn’t the case for other subjects. As a third year student – I can say I know a lot about the care the lecturers provide and the course itself. Continue reading if you would like to know the inns and the outs of studying Drama at The University of Manchester.

Drama

A lot of people from other subjects are led to believe that studying Drama is all Shakespeare performances and fancy dress. This is not the case. I hate acting and the thought of being placed on stage terrifies me. At The University of Manchester you will perform on stage at some point, however in most cases you can opt to not take a non-performing role. Since first year, I have not had to perform once. The Drama department at The University of Manchester understand that there is more to the subject than just acting.

The variety of modules you get to choose from are outstanding. One day you could be studying how to write a play, and the next you could be analysing Lord of the Rings and why it is considered a ‘fantasy film’. That’s right, there are a variety of film options to choose from. In fact, I study Drama and Screen Studies and haven’t looked at a play since first year. Don’t be put off with the assumption that studying Drama is all about the theatre – it isn’t.

The Department

In terms on how the Drama department compares to other subjects – there are no words. The moment I emailed my lecturer that I wanted to drop out of university, he was on the phone to me in minutes asking me if everything is okay. The next day he rearranged his schedule to meet with me to talk through why I was feeling the way I was. He cracked open a packet of biscuits and we talked for about an hour. In this time, not once did he try and persuade me to stay. Instead, it was sort of like a counselling session – a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders after that meeting. The Drama department go above and beyond to make you feel safe and welcome.

I know this is not the same for other subjects. For a course like Law, which has hundreds and hundreds of students, there just isn’t the time for lecturers to get to know each of their students. For some lecturers, their job ends after their last lecture. This isn’t the case for the Drama department. They take a huge role in the Drama related societies and often go and watch shows/ short films in their own time. They really care about your future!

Your Future

The Drama department at the University of Manchester really care about your future. They go above and beyond to try and encourage you to find what you enjoy and what you want to do with your life. If you’re thinking about continuing to study drama after your degree, every lecturer would be happy to answer any questions. Otherwise, if becoming a freelance actor/playwright/theatre practitioner takes your fancy, the University of Manchester hold so many workshops related to becoming a freelancer. They bring professionals in the field in to answer any questions students might have. In my second year, the drama department hosted a Q&A with actor Toby Jones as he is an alumni of the University of Manchester. It was surreal.

The Drama Society

The Drama society works very closely alongside the Drama department. This is one of the best things about studying drama at the University of Manchester. Any opportunities that the lecturers find out about they pass the information forward and the drama department are very understanding about upcoming performances and the impact it could have on attendance. Of course, you are required to attend everything regardless, but overall the lecturers are very understanding. They also tend to go and watch as many shows as they can. In my opinion, this is a testament to how much they care about their students as opposed to just getting good grades from them.

Anyway, I thought I needed to write this post after all the kindness the lecturers at the University of Manchester have shown me. University wasn’t for me, but that didn’t stop my lecturers trying to make it enjoyable

Student debt. It’s something we hear about all the time but no one is really talking about it. At school we are told the financial burden of what going to university/college actually means, however, as teenagers we ignore the warning calls as that is a problem for the future to bear. That was me three years ago. Now I am in my third year of university almost working full-time hours alongside a full time degree. I am wondering is all this debt worth it? I am going to discuss what being in debt is actually like and how it can affect your experience as a student. Different loans for different students In the U.K. the government will pay for everyones tuition fees and then the student will pay it all back out of his/her wage once they are earning over (i think) £21,000 a year. This figure tends to bounce…

It’s the time of year when many university students start to panic over what they are going to do when they graduate. Some people have known what they’ve wanted to do since before they even applied to university and if this is you then great. If this isn’t you and you are feeling very lost then do not worry. You are not alone. I will hopefully be graduating in the summer and although I’m no careers counsellor, I already know what I want to do when I graduate. So, I thought I’d pose three questions to get you started in thinking about what to do after university.

Did you enjoy university?

The first question you need to ask yourself is did you enjoy university? If you did, then this could potentially open up the opportunities of diving into post-graduate study. Was there one module that you felt so passionate about that you’d love to learn more? Then maybe you should study a masters degree devoted to it? However, enjoying university does not mean you are obliged to carry on with academic study. Perhaps you enjoyed the organisational side of a degree – in that case you could look for a career which requires these skills. Maybe you took an interest and participated in a society that could propel you into a career? A good example of this is a media or creative writing additional activity. Participating in these clubs will provide you with the skills needed for a career in them, and if you enjoyed it then maybe its a good enough reason to go for it.

If you did not enjoy university then it goes without saying that you definitely should not continue academia into post-graduate study. There is absolutely no point in spending your valuable time doing something that you do not enjoy. Life is too short, move on and if you do not know how to move on then literally get a job anywhere. That’s a good place to start. You never know you’ll enjoy something till you’ve tried it.

Are you a money oriented person?

The second question you should ask yourself is, are you a money oriented person? Sure everyone loves having money, but there are specific people out there that get addicted to earning money and get a buzz off earning more and more. If this is you then you should do whatever earns you the most money. If you want a steady job then apply to the jobs with the highest pay and greatest career progression. However, despite doctors and humanitarians doing more moral jobs, it tends to be business people and those who work in finance that earn the most. Perhaps you can use that as your starting point for job searching?

If you are not a money oriented person then maybe you want to help people? Working for a charity is always a good place to start your job hunt. Not only will you be earning money to pay the bills but your job will also be making a difference to peoples lives. Obviously careers such as being a doctor or a nurse are very rewarding however studying these areas at university probably means you know what you want to do after university. Therefore, why are you reading this post?

Are you travel oriented?

The last question I think you should ask yourself is are you travel oriented? I ask you this because travel and tourism is all I want to do after I graduate and it’s not particularly money oriented or an ethical career path. Unless of course you volunteer abroad doing conservation work or rebuilding homes for people, for example. If you’re like me and the idea of settling into the same career for the next twenty years terrifies you, then maybe you should pack a bag and get on a plane. Of course, it takes steps before you can go backpacking, money for example and those steps are what will determine what you do after university. Do you need to move back with your parents and get a job with lots of hours for you to be able to afford to travel? Would you rather get a job on a cruise ship or become a member of cabin crew? If you ask yourself these questions now, then you will have plenty of time to plan your next steps before you graduate.

I hope you have enjoyed reading this post and I hope it has brought you some what closer to figuring out what you want to do after university. If you would like to read more of mine be sure to subscribe to my blog and don’t forget to follow me on social media for updates on new content!