Polly Jones

Media Production (BA Hons)

Polly didn’t want to move too far from home due to her dad’s deteriorating health and other difficulties. Luckily, she had her heart set on BCU, which meant she could put family first whilst working towards her dream career.

“The main challenge I faced before and during my studies was my dad’s deteriorating health. It was always at the back of my mind when applying, and I didn’t want to move too far away in case he suddenly needed me to come home. Birmingham felt like the right choice, as it meant I was never too far away from him. This worked out well as after researching universities, I had set my heart on BCU as my first choice.

I was really nervous about moving, as I’ve experienced bullying previously in my life. I’ve struggled with my mental health too, but luckily, I was able to find help through the Mental Health and Wellbeing team, who supported me through my studies with counselling and group sessions. I feel like I can cope with it better now and feel far more comfortable working with others and meeting new people, which was something I often struggled with.

Since joining BCU, I’ve thrown myself into every opportunity I can, both during my studies and on an extra-curricular level. I worked as the Students’ Union’s Vice President for a year, and one of my proudest moments was becoming a student rep for the School of Media. I got to work on improving my course, and it was really exciting to know that my work helps to actively improve all courses within the School of Media and beyond.

I have worked on many extracurricular activities and projects, including creating podcasts for the LGBTQ+ Society, as well as presenting and producing a weekly show on the University’s radio station - Scratch Radio. Working with the LGBTQ+ Society is so rewarding, as a bisexual myself, I feel represented and proud to represent inclusivity.

I’ve also been working with the University as a student vlogger, which has been an amazing experience. This is something I particularly enjoyed, as it gave me experience with working on different briefs and to deadlines. It has pushed me outside of my comfort zone and gotten me in front of a camera, which I wasn’t used to before. Through this opportunity I’ve been part of BCU Open Day content, and even a vaccination campaign.

My ultimate dream is to become a production manager. Being at university I learnt so much about myself and what I want to do with my life, as when I initially started my course, I was unsure about which path within media to take. All of the opportunities I’ve been given have let me try out different roles and given me experience on a wide range of productions and it’s really let me dip my toes into everything and figure out what my passions are.

I am proud to say I landed two key roles on work placements: one working on the BBC show, ‘Doctors’, for three days, and the other working on an independent film production with Daniel Alexander. I was also awarded a SKY scholarship, which I will undertake for two weeks later this year in London. All of these experiences are going to be so valuable for my career.

I think I most love the community of BCU. You get such a variety of people from all walks of life. I’ve learnt so much just from the people around me.

I love the community aspect of BCU so much that I decided to start the ‘Put the Kettle On’ society - a society that encompasses sitting down, having a chat and a hot drink and getting to know other students. I wanted to create a relaxed environment and it feels as if we’re a big family.

For me, ‘I Am BCU’ means being part of a huge family. It means being taught to industry standards, by professionals and experts in the area you are studying in. It means being taught to be creative yet resilient, a leader and a team player at the same time.”

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