- Course: BA English Literature with Creative Writing
- Nationality: British
Tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m currently completing my third and final year of study at the University in English Literature with Creative Writing. I come from Essex and have lived there all my life. I’m incredibly passionate about film and spend most of my time either reading, listening to my records or at the cinema. I’m well known for being highly opinionated, rather loud, and good at debating.
What made you want to apply to your course and to Leeds?
I often say that everybody has a dream university somewhere in the world for them, they just may never be able to discover it for a variety of reasons. I was very lucky that I was able to access and find my dream university a few hours away from me, and for it to provide my dream course. I knew the English department at Leeds was exceptional, and it was also one of the few Russell Group universities that offered a degree involving creative writing. When I visited on the open day and stepped on to the beautiful campus, I was lucky to know immediately that it was the university for me.
What is it that makes you passionate about your area of study?
English Literature spans so much more than just one subject; there is such a rich level of history, language, philosophy, and politics implicit in every piece of literature and poetry. English also relates significantly to the levels of interest outside my degree; part of my Final Year Project is combining my poetry work with music lyricism and film, so I get to pursue my academic passions and my personal passions in one!
What aspects of the course do you enjoy the most?
Intersectionality is a huge part of both literature and creative writing I study, and having a diverse curriculum means learning isn’t limited to reading a works by straight, white men all the time. Creative writing is structured significantly around peer work – both reading other people’s and other people reading your own – so you learn incredibly important skills like how to provide and receive constructive criticism, which is sought after a lot by employers. Both literature and creative writing provide you the space to really vocalise your opinions in a safe and supportive space, and let you learn not just from your professors but from your peers around you too.
Have you worked closely with a particular tutor or member of the University’s academic staff?
As a creative writing student, I have worked particularly closely with Kimberly Campanello, the course director. Her consistent feedback has helped me gain confidence in my own writing as well as pushing me to achieve more than I could have done by myself. She has also helped introduce me to the world of publication and provided me with insight into new types of poetry that I didn’t know existed before coming to university.
Are you involved in any activities outside of your studies?
There are hundreds of societies available to sign up to at the University, all full of both experienced students that can provide help and support, and brand-new students looking to pursue their favourite sports or activities.
Societies are a brilliant way to meet new, like-minded people and explore passions both old and new. I’m part of many including Film Society, where we get to use the University’s excellent cinema facilities and then go to the pub afterwards for discussions about the film and general talking.
What do you plan to do when you’ve finished your course, and how do you think the skills and knowledge you’ve developed so far at Leeds will help with these plans?
I’m planning to pursue both a Masters and a PhD in Disability Studies, hopefully still at the University of Leeds! The academic skills I’ve learnt from my degree, like critical thinking and essay writing, will be invaluable for my continued scholarly pursuits and will provide the foundations for further developments in these areas.
What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?
I would implore anybody considering to simply go for it!
Personally, I believe it’s important to have a balanced degree – something that English Literature with Creative Writing offers perfectly. Not only are you given the ability to think critically and engage with academic works, but you’re also provided the chance to create and express yourself which is as equally important.