Open letter to a prospective students from a current student
There is no better way to find out the truth about places you’re thinking of studying than asking a student. It’s my job as marketing manager to be on message, but a student isn’t required to ensure that everything they say about CCAD is straight from my messaging hierarchy! This is why we encourage potential students to come to an open day, because you’ll get a feel for the atmosphere for yourself and get to talk to those who made the decision you are faced with. I was delighted to receive an unprompted email from Amy Norris, a costume student I had met a few days prior, which contained some information she had sent a potential student who had contacted her directly to find out exactly what it was like to study at CCAD. With Amy’s permission, her words are below:
When proposed with the question ‘What would you want future students at CCAD to know?’, I couldn’t think of one answer, being a student at CCAD is not your typical student experience, and many people may view this as a negative, they may want the boozy culture and the all night revision sessions in the library, but that’s not me. And this is my story, you won’t see it in a prospectus and the pictures maybe selfies, but this is my experience of CCAD, and I am going to try and share it with you, in its madness and fun, I hope you enjoy it and come along!
I am a third year costume design student, I chose Hartlepool because the course was exactly what I wanted, and although this may be what brought me too CCAD it is not then only reason I stayed, (although my course is amazing!) I stayed because I fell in love with Hartlepool; the set-up of the university is unlike anything I had experienced before. My course mates started to feel like family, I spend all day everyday with the same twenty people, they know what you’re making and how you’re doing it, I found a little costume bubble where I say things like ‘the pleats are puckered on the waistband’ and instead of looking blankly at me like my dad would, they would come back with suggestions as to how to fix it.
My tutors became like friends, they know me by name and know my strengths, weaknesses and personality. In many ways CCAD could feel like a school, you have class sizes of about 20, your own desk and there’s work to be done. But it doesn’t feel like a school at all, yes you are learning but you’re an adult, you’re respected and listened to, and you have to cook your own meals when you go home at night! And despite being an ‘adult’ it’s fun! We go on trips and explore, because we are costume students we dress up and go out, we’ve swam in the sea at 8am in the morning after a party, and cooked ourselves Christmas dinner, got lost in Durham and run around Newcastle. We have been to London, Bath, Beamish and Durham together.
So no, it is not your typical student experience, but I would argue it is better. There is freedom and power to do what you want, we wanted a ball, and we had a winter ball! We wanted a weekend away, and we had a weekend away! We like what we make and we learn great skills, we are professional, but that doesn’t mean there’s no room for fun along the way. So to the CCAD applicant, do it! Come to Hartlepool, yes your mum may moan (mine certainly did) but it’s safer than London and has a more interesting accent too. Hartlepool is cheap and it’s windy, it will create that windswept look you spend hours perfecting in seconds and for free! And to the CCAD student, who’s already here, make the most of this year! Join a club or go on a night out, adventure the north east and make the memories and friends you will never forget!