We spoke to very recent graduate Aimee-Lee Abraham about her Cardiff University experience. Her advice is to take advantage of very opportunity that comes your way whilst at University and follow your passion!
Hello, Amy what did you study at Cardiff University?
BA Journalism, Media & Cultural Studies.
Why did you decide to study that subject?
I have wanted to be a Journalist for as long as I can remember and Cardiff was always my first choice. Most Journalism schools in the UK provide highly practical training, which is great, but I wanted to really immerse myself in an academic course which covered critical media theory. JOMEC’s reputation made it a no-brainer in that regard. I got to learn about mediated propaganda techniques used in Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia in the same term as modules on gender in advertising and social media trends. It offers classical training but is also innovative, current and flexible.
How would you describe your experience at Cardiff University?
A whirlwind. There were many highs and lows, but ultimately going to university is the best decision I ever made.
Did you become involved in any societies or student media while being at Cardiff University?
Yes. I wrote for student media throughout and was lucky enough to be made Features Editor of Quench Magazine in my final year. I also taught English to refugees based in Cardiff through STAR (Student Action For Refugees) in first year, which was incredibly rewarding.
What has been the best moments you have had during your time here?
My time in student media was a real highlight in terms of personal development. I had some unforgettable experiences. The best example would probably be when I travelled to the other side of the country to interview a 96 year old retired exorcist for a feature on ghosthunting, which was later nominated for a national award and won me two local awards. Although I loved my course, I definitely gained more confidence through the work experience I accumulated alongside my studies. Another memorable moment was when I covered the General Election for Sky News in my final year and had to stay up all night streaming the results on a tiny camera, running on pure adrenaline and fear. There are also a thousand small but significant moments I could pick out from the whole three years. You meet so many people from around the world at university and each and every one of them changes you in some way. I’ve made friends for life here.
How do you feel about graduating?
A strange mixture of exhilaration, excitement and existential dread. I feel immensely proud and humbled to join the JOMEC alumni and I’m thrilled to be starting the next chapter of my life… but there’s some lingering separation anxiety, for sure.
What are your plans for after graduation?
I’ve just moved to London and am still chasing a career in print media. At the moment I’m working part-time and volunteering as an editorial assistant at a women’s centre in Camden, where I’m helping to curate a book about the experiences and achievements of marginalised women in the area. The plan is to take this year out to breathe and to pursue my creative passions, but I’m fully intending to do an MA in International Journalism in the future.
What advice would you give to first years coming to Cardiff University?
Don’t be afraid to jump straight in at the deep end. Try as many new things as you can. Meet as many new people as you can. Read as much as you can. Stay up all night drinking up everything student life has to offer, but go to your 9am lectures and take advantage of the amazing educational resources. You won’t realise how much of a privilige it truly is to be given the time and money just to learn and develop for three years, but that’s okay because nobody does. It’s a strange and confusing time, and it can be scary navigating life as a quasi-adult, but in the end you’ll realise how transformative and incredible university is. Enjoy it!
Congratulations on your graduation Aimee-Lee!