I dream of seeing my name in the credits
Bradley Bowckett is an MA Film (Screen Writing) student talks about his experiences on the course and of blended Learning.
What made you choose USW?
I've always wanted to live in Cardiff. The course fitted everything I wanted to do and taught everything I wanted to learn. I'd finished my undergraduate degree and thought about what now? I wasn’t sure how I could launch my career. Nor did I feel ready to. I'd moved back home, and it started to feel like I was back to square one. So, when I found my course and saw it was beginning in January, it felt like the perfect next step at the right time.
How have you found blended learning?
There is no point in denying that it has been strange. However, the quality of lectures and seminars hasn’t suffered as a result of being online. It's enabled more opportunities for guest speakers; who might not have been able to visit the campus.
Navigating Zoom and Teams has become a vital skill. Having these platforms be part of our every day will help with future jobs.
I'm looking forward to having lessons face to face soon, to be in the same room as my course mates and lecturers who have existed in tiny boxes for so long.
Is it easy to stay in touch with course mates and lecturers?
After breaking the ice, in lessons, we've started using our group chats more and more. I was initially concerned that being online would hinder friendships forming, as you can’t have a side conversation during a lull of a lesson. However, we've created a strong friendship group, where we all support each other. No one is left out or forgotten. Our most recent deadline day was filled with encouraging messages and important questions being answered. This was invaluable!
Did you attend a University Open Day?
The open day was strange as it was behind a screen, but I knew about the campus and the area, as I'd visited it before. The event was useful. I had my questions answered, and the university addressed my concerns. So, I would recommend attending the event as an opportunity to ask that question, which is causing you any niggling doubts.
Tell us about the location of the University.
The Cardiff Campus is situated in the perfect location as you feel the heartbeat, of the city, without being swamped by it. Shops, castles, and a view from Cardiff Bay is only a short walk away. Cardiff has a capital city vibe whilst still feeling homely.
Which support services have you accessed?
The library is invaluable and has adapted brilliantly to the online world. They stayed open for collection despite the pandemic and have a wealth of resources online. These include helpful hints and tips for every part of student study. The librarians are also available for one-to-one appointments to help navigate you through your studies.
The disability team are friendly, helpful, and efficient. Everything was in place for me before I started my studies; to ensure I never struggled. I know if I needed any additional support, I could ask for it and receive it from them at any time.
The fees and funding process required a little research into my entitlements. I needed to work out if I could afford to do the course but, I conferred with my family, and they assisted me in the calculations.
Where did you choose to live?
I'm staying at Prime Student Living which isn’t university-owned. It's a walk away from campus and provides homely, affordable accommodation with the friendliest of reception teams. If you can’t find university accommodation, don’t worry. There are lots of accommodation options, built for students, nearby.
What are you enjoying about the course?
I've enjoyed collaborating with coursemates on both my work and theirs. Everyone has a different perspective and skill set. So, you gain invaluable insights into your work. You find yourself thinking about possibilities you hadn't even considered.
What will you learn that will make you more employable?
The course is tailored to make you more employable. Its content is of the highest quality and, it will sharpen your skills in your chosen practice. So, you won't be out of your depth in professional employment. It provides you with opportunities for working with industry professionals. Either as part of your work experience or through opportunities sent by industry partners. The masters help to build the beginnings of a network before you start your first professional job.
What work placements have you completed so far?
I'm on placement, and the opportunity to work with seasoned professionals with enviable careers is invaluable and exciting. To know that I won't be considered a student but as a collaborator is thrilling and confidence-building. It makes a future career seem less daunting. It proves, to me, that I'm good enough and that I can have the job role I've dreamt of.
What are your future plans?
I plan to finish my course strongly and continue to build my network. When I graduate, I hope to use everything I've been taught to find an entry-level position, to start building my career. I dream of seeing my name in the credits. This seems more plausible than ever, thanks to USW.