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Tamara Carr

English BA (Hons)
Tamara Carr

It’s not just teacher teaching student, but student influencing teacher. Sometimes we’ll even suggest resources for class

Why did you decide to apply to study at City?

City’s English course is one of the few courses across the country that balances professional, academic and creative writing. It was the perfect opportunity for me to begin my journey in becoming a real writer and finding my niche. City’s career focused approach fit me perfectly - I had big dreams in a competitive career sector post graduation and I knew this was the right place to make them happen. Now entering third year, I can say with clarity that this couldn’t have been more true.

What were the most important resources in helping you to make a decision?

I actually went for a meeting with the head of my department, Patricia Moran, in the summer before I started as a fresher. Not only did we chat about the books I might study and what the course had to offer, but for the first time in my life I met an academic that was warm, friendly, passionate, and genuine. I left the red stoned college building and phoned my dad…’this course is perfect for me.’

What is your favourite thing about studying at City?

Limiting it to my 3 top favourites:

  1. The staff. I think that once you hit university, being treated like an adult and having your opinions count is a given, but City goes a bit beyond that. It’s not just teacher teaching student, but student influencing teacher. Sometimes we’ll even suggest resources for class and our professors will actually place them into the syllabus. City’s much more a community than an institution.
  2. It sounds petty but the next thing has got to be the grounds, Northampton Square in particular. On my first day as a fresher, I took out a notebook and wrote under a tree in the square. From that piece of grass to the redstone college campus, it’s just become one of my favourite places on earth to write, to be, to think.
  3. I think what sets City apart from any other university in the country is it doesn’t believe in the rather British ideology that you’ve got to specialise in one thing. Throughout my course I haven’t only studied literature, but theatre, film, art, music, business, and geography. This course has set me up for any career in the arts sector that I’ve dared to dream about. It just steers you where you want to go. My ‘sub passions’ have been just as important as my main ones. I’ve really appreciated that.

What experience have you had that will help you with future careers? (i.e. work placements, talks or workshops from industry professionals, etc.)

During second year I took a work placement module and had the opportunity to volunteer in a professional theatre. Without the business, CV, interview and workshops and classes...I really doubt I would have received the place I did. Being taught by a professional writer this year was a real privilege - City’s really helped me network and brought me out of my shell.

What is your favourite thing about living in London?

I’ve lived just outside London all my life, and every time I hit the city, I can walk with music blaring out my ears and still hear everything that’s going on around me. There’s never a dull moment...this serves you well when you’re a writer. You never know when inspiration is going to hit. But I don’t think you’ve got to be an extravert to enjoy living here. It’s big enough for everyone to find a place of their own.

What do you plan to do after you graduate?

Whether it's for the stage or by way of novels, all I know is that I want to write. Before I started at City I didn’t have any confidence I’d really get there. But now I’ve started a blog about it, met friends for life who have influenced my writing, and taken part in classes and opportunities that have completely changed my future.

What would be your top tip for our applicants?

Just come in and have a chat with someone from the department you’re interested in, or meet an alumni, but do either or both of these things inside campus. You never know how you feel about a place until you visit, and nothing made me more excited about starting at City than walking through Northampton Square and seeing that clock above the college building.