Charlotte Hurrell

Media and Communication BA (Hons)

Charlotte, who has dyslexia, wasn’t sure if she was ever going to be able to go to university after struggling with her GCSE’s and not knowing if a diploma could be enough to get a place. But Charlotte’s passion about radio shined through and her creative skills thrived at BCU and work experience opportunities. Now, Charlotte is excelling in her radio career at Bauer Media.

“I’d never really put much thought into university and I didn’t even know that you could do a course around Radio. But I did know that I was good at talking to people. I was doing a Media Diploma at college, and within that we did a radio course, and I soon discovered that it was 100% what I wanted to do. That is when I came across BCU. I loved the city, the diversity and the creativity. BCU felt so modern and I couldn’t picture myself anywhere else.

The course also wasn’t just radio presenting either, it was documentary making, adverts, script writing, programming, music and so much more. I didn’t quite know which bit I wanted to go into, so having the freedom to do those different modules gave me opportunities to really try everything and find my spark.

I’m dyslexic, so I’m not great with spelling and I didn’t get many GCSE’s. I didn’t think I’d be able to get into university. I retook my Maths GCSE, and finally got it after doing so many test papers, because I was desperate to get into university. I also didn’t know if having a Diploma rather than A-Levels would be enough, but thankfully, it was and I did it. I found out at my interview for the course that it’s not really about your grades, it is about you as a person.

During my degree, my tutors knew that I was dyslexic, but that I didn’t want special treatment. Sometimes I would have to tell them that I was confused by the question and ask them to rephrase it and they were so patient, understanding and accommodating. I could have as many meetings as I wanted with my tutors and I could email them any time. I found that everyone at BCU was just happy to help.

On my course, it was compulsory to do work experience. So I undertook internships at Heart Cambridgeshire, and from that, I landed a freelance paid position with them. I also took on a freelance position at Free Radio in Birmingham, alongside BCU’s Scratch Radio as their social media assistant. It was great to be around those with similar interests to me.

Approaching graduation, I attended a career meeting and they gave me interview tips and told me about the STAR technique. I also had my dyslexia assessment too, and it was so nice to feel validated and have that help and support throughout university, without them making it feel like a big deal.

I started applying for jobs about six months before graduation and I kept an eye on all the big radio companies during that time. When I got offered an interview at Bauer Media, I was travelling. I had the interview on my phone in the camper van that I was travelling across Australia in! Luckily, they liked me and when I got back from my travels, they invited me into an interview and I was offered the position. I started my role as a Production Coordinator just three days after graduating.

Nowadays, I’m still at Bauer Media but I’ve worked my way up to Junior Production Manager. I’m in the delivery and advertising department, so any clients that want airtime on Kiss, Absolute or Magic, I help to get their scripts written, produce them and get them out there on air.

My favourite part of the role is definitely how creative I can be and how unpredictable it is, you never quite know what the next day could look like, I really enjoy the rush and thrill of it all. It’s so fast-paced, I love it.

Without having the compulsory work experience as part of the course, I wouldn’t have got my job after university. BCU gave me the skills to interact with professionals, presenting and so much more. My advice to current students would be to make those connections with potential employers. Get your name out there and don’t let others give you boundaries.

Because of BCU, I am progressive, creative and open.”