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Alumni

Sarah Ford

Career Path: Director of Quaternaire
Location: Paris, France

Before I went to Newcastle to study languages and politics, I studied French, Maths and Arts at A Level. I think that the arts was always my passion, but I didn't think it would be a good career choice. After graduating and doing a masters, I found it very hard to find work as a new graduate without work experience. So from that point on, I decided to do as many internships as possible, get as much work experience as possible, and only do the things I loved to do. I have worked in TV, in the theatre doing work from stage management to lighting and costume design. PR was my strongest point, and this eventually led me to artist representation. There are very few people doing this and it is a labour or love. But every day is different and highly creative. 

What are you doing now?

I am the Director of Quaternaire 

What was it about Northumbria that made you decide to study here?

I think it has to be the bridge. Every time I travel over the bridge to Newcastle I fall in love with the city again. It was amazing to live in a city and to hop on a metro and spend a day at some of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen.

What was it like studying at Northumbria?

At Northumbria, we had small classes and the teachers were very committed to the students. We spent a year abroad, and I was one of Erasmus's first guinea pigs. Erasmus in 1991 was not an easy experience but it taught me how never to give up the fight. 

How connected was your course with industry?

I studied languages and politics, and now I live in France and work in the Arts. The arts is highly politicised so the social and political history was very useful. Having a year abroad and doing a foreign degree at a foreign university gave me the language skills I needed to set up a business abroad. 

What was the best thing about your course?

The teachers at Northumbria were very committed to the students - I had come from a girls grammar school and no one had taken any notice of me there, so it was empowering to feel appreciated. 

How did studying at Northumbria help you achieve your career goals/ give your career an edge?

The language skills were key for me. Learning about the working world and gaining business acumen is something you find when you leave university. 

Which skills/knowledge did you learn on your course that you use most now throughout your career?

Languages and understanding of current and political affairs. 

What did you enjoy most about your time at Northumbria University?

I enjoyed the social life more than anything else. Living away from home, finding life-long friends. I wish I could say it was the academia but I'm afraid it wasn't! 

What advice would you give somebody who is considering studying at Northumbria?

Embrace the city, the countryside and student life. The rest will fit into place later. 

How would you describe your time at Northumbria in three words?

Larger than life 

For more information about me visit:

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