Bournville College was the complete opposite to my secondary school. It was absolutely fantastic.
Another post on education. However, this one has a much more positive note to it compared to my previous posts. College.
College in the UK is not like college in the US. It’s a weird stage of education. You’re done with secondary school (high school) but are not ready for university so you can do one of two things, get a job at sixteen or go to college. If you choose college, you can study either 1 subject (Btec qualification) or 3 subjects (A-level qualification). You only study the subjects you choose.
College was the best two years of my life up to date. I studied Level 3 Extended Diploma in Creative Media Production—a btec.
During this course, I was able to study the theory as well as the practical side. An example of this was completing paperwork such as talent release forms, health and safety forms and risk assessments, ready for when we create the film or video.
This allowed me to get a real idea of how the industry worked. I choose this particular course as it allowed me to get a look at the industry as a whole, as appose to one individual area.
However, this had its drawbacks. After creating a short film or video, we had to edit it into a final project. This proved an on-going problem for me as I have trouble with my motor skills.
My brain knows how to do it, but my hands won’t cooperate. This was frustrating, but I proceeded, as I wanted to finish college with the highest grades possible. I was determined.
I received fantastic support. Both the assistants and the tutors understood my needs and allowed me what I needed to get the work done in time, e.g. extra time or listening to clips before class, so I knew what to expect in class.
I wouldn’t be able to complete work in the allotted time if it wasn’t for the allowances.
Regretfully, I had to retake my English language GCSE as I missed out on grade C in school by one mark. Annoying, but nothing I could do. This is a secondary school qualification.
Having to retake my English Language GCSE, I did feel the extra pressure and stress as I had a lot to attend with at this point. Again the assistants were very supportive. Luckily for me, my English tutor was one of my tutors for Media.
As I was up to date with my coursework in that subject, the tutor gave me help with my English coursework. In amongst this, I signed up for extra 1-1 support with a member of the support team.
He adapted to my learning style and we found a plan that suited me. My learning plan included breaking the assessment down into bullet points and then linking the points together.
Thanks to all this support, I left college, achieving a triple distinction in my Level 3 Diploma—this is equivalent to 3 As, the highest you can get with either college pathways—and a B in my English retake.
Bournville College – CareerReady
When I chose to involve myself in the media, I knew I must be prepared. The media industry is so vast and continuing to grow, in all the different sectors.
As I settled into my life at Bournville College, a new opportunity arose. Career Academy was available to students in only a few courses, like Media and Business.
Anyone within these courses could apply and then these applicants were narrowed down through an interview process, their work ethic taken into account.
I became a member and new opportunities opened up to me. The programme gave me an insight into the media industry and how it operated.
Guest speakers came into college on a regular basis to share their experience and real-life career advice. This opened my eyes to how intense the industry was.
The guest speakers then gave us a means of contacting them if we were interested in pursuing a career in their area of work or expertise.
In the middle of the first year, we are assigned a mentor to coach us through the rest of our Career Academy journey, by assisting with updating our CV, to interview preparation to giving us useful contacts, depending on our line of interest.
This showed me that no skill was too basic to acquire when it came to the world of work.
As our first year on the Career Academy was coming to a close. I was offered the chance of an internship at a games app company.
I wasn’t sure about doing an internship at WeWanaPlay as I didn’t feel like game testing or app designing would benefit me in the future.
However, they offered me an alternative, to become a member of their social media team, promoting their company.
I felt this was the most beneficial as I already had an interest in the area and I could showcase my creativity.
This also showed possible and further employers that I could work effectively in the work environment, increasing my chances of employability.
Career Academy – WeWannaPlay
While I was a part of Bournville College and the Career Academy program, I took part and was involved in some amazing things and was able to have some great opportunities.
One of which that I remember well was a work experience Internship at the games app company, ‘WeWannaPlay’.
It was local to me so very easy to travel to and from there. Though Career Academy had set up this work placement for me during the summer between the years that I was at college, I still had to attend a formal interview as I was not the only one up for the work experience placement position.
As this was one of my first interviews that I had, I was very anxious and didn’t know what to expect. But I felt prepared as we had already been briefed on interview skills as part of the Career Academy program.
As part of the interview, I went through three stages. One was a verbal interview where I spoke with one of the people that work there and told them why I would be the best person to fill the position that was available.
I also spoke about what I would do when I liked a new game that I was testing or suggest how I would review a new game on behalf of the company. This got me really excited and I was really eager to get the role.
To my surprise and pleasure, I got accepted and started a two-week internship at WeWanaPlay’.
During these two weeks, I took part in managing the company’s social media pages to make sure the word of the company was spread as widely as possible. I also was able to do a lot of game testing and game reviewing for the company’s website.
I really enjoyed these two weeks at the Internship and had a lot of fun especially as I was able to do a lot of game testing.
This truly was a great internship that I got through the Career Academy program at college.