August 2, 2019

Millie Meader English and Creative Writing graduate

My time studying BA (Hons) English and Creative Writing at Cardiff Met has been quite an experience. I remember how I was terrified to begin my course, after changing universities and going through clearing.

When I knew my original university was not for me, I began to look online for other options. I was extremely worried that I would miss out on going to university that year and saw that Cardiff Met offered my course! I received great support from the team and was able to start the following week. The transition to Cardiff Met was swift and I settled into my new course quickly so my Clearing experience was a lot easier than I thought it would be. The best advice I could provide to students that consider Clearing is to be open-minded. I never knew Cardiff Met provided my course, let alone have two campuses! 

The English and Creative Writing course has helped me boost my confidence both in my writing and myself, as well as opening up a variety of opportunities. A lot of people assume that there will be loads of reading – which is true. Yet the course remains very current, by looking into contemporary issues explored through books and other literature. This is down to the passionate and well-informed lecturers that work hard to make the course exciting. The support you receive from lecturers is second to none and they are always there to offer guidance. They strive to help you produce the best work that you can and also gain a worthwhile experience from university at the same time.

Here’s my top 5 highlights:

  1. Working with the Friends of the Crumlin Navigation Colliery

Lots of Cardiff Met courses involve spending time in a work placement, this allows you to gain the hands-on experience and to apply skills gained from your course to a real-life workplace. During my placement, I helped produce several written pieces such as the Crumlin Times (a community newspaper) and Crumlin Stories (a collection that centres around Crumlin Navigation) during a work placement in my second year. Your education is important, but having the hands-on experience of a work placement really helps you to decide whether a particular career is for you or not – so just do it!

On placement at the Crumlin Navigation Colliery

2. Producing Met Vol. 5

In the third year, Creative Writing students have the opportunity to produce Met Vol. 5, the next student anthology. Every step of its production was really eye-opening and enjoyable. It taught us that the publishing industry is complex and the importance of teamwork. I would like to work in publishing in the future and found this to be a fantastic and valuable experience! I would really recommend taking part.

2. Open Mic

Open Mic is a monthly event held at Centro on the Cyncoed Campus. When I first started attending, it was mainly students reading creative pieces but now it’s evolved into musical performances or even a comedy routine! Besides socialising with other students across all courses, it allows you to build your confidence in performing within a relaxed environment. It is always a positive environment, where you can feel relaxed to perform your written work. My work drastically improved by reading out aloud and receiving constructive feedback from others. Plus, there is often free pizza!

3. Cheval 12

There is a great encouragement to make your work public and this can be done in a variety of ways, within or outside of university. I chose to enter a short story to the Terry Hetherington Young Writers Award 2019 called ‘Interview with a Welshman.’ It got published in Cheval 12 by Parthian Books Ltd! I attended its launch in Swansea and performed my piece. It was nerve-wracking, but I felt more prepared thanks to attending Open Mic and the support I had received during the course.

Some of the books that my work is featured in or I have helped produce.

5. Graduation

Graduation is the day where you reminisce about your time at university. I have realised that there are an endless amount of opportunities during this course – take them whenever you can, because time goes by so quickly!

It is crazy to think that my undergraduate degree is now over, but I have made some unforgettable memories and I am so glad to have studied at Cardiff Met. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for me in publishing.