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Adam Keys

Career Path: Senior Social Media Executive, ScS
Location: Sunderland, UK

Since graduating from Northumbria, I have been working in digital marketing, a field that is constantly changing, and extremely fast paced. It is a field were continuous learning is essential and complacency is punished, making it perfect for someone like me - who gets easily bored with repetition. Throughout this experience, I've gained a huge deal of experience, working with a mixture of households brands and smaller, local businesses and managing small to six figure budgets.

What are you doing now?Adam Keys

At ScS, I have a wide range of responsibilities, including paid social, display, earned media, and the management of the ScS content team, who look after organic social media, video production and on-site content.

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

Throughout my A-Levels, I visited numerous universities in England, as I was determined to leave Northern Ireland. During these visits, Northumbria's proactive, forward thinking approach to education stood out, and their Journalism BA was rated as one of the best in the country.

What was it like studying at Northumbria?

Throughout my time studying, I was exposed to a wide range of learning across lectures, small-group seminars and team projects. These included film and radio production, alongside insights on how to write in various different styles, for different publications. Throughout this, feedback was thorough and concise, with lecturers being available for more in-depth feedback upon request.

How connected was your course with industry?

As a relatively new course when I arrived at Northumbria, the Journalism lecturers were extremely fresh, with many still working as freelancers. These connections meant that we had guest lecturers from the likes of the BBC, Newcastle Chronicle and The Scotsman, all of which led to me gaining a greater insight into the world of journalism.

If you took on a placement during your course how did you feel this helped you in your career/ with your studies?

I took on a number of placement opportunities, such as Newcastle City Council's press office, Newcastle Chronicle and The Derry Journal. Alongside these placement opportunities, I used my lecturers to help make contacts with music and football publications (some of which I still write for), which allowed me to build up a portfolio of writing, alongside my degree. This portfolio was a huge help when it came to applying for graduate opportunities, as it helped me to stand out from the sea of graduates, and provide prospective employers with an insight into the quality of my work.

What was the best thing about your course?

Working on group projects, particularly those involving video production.

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

During my final year, my Sport and Music Journalism lecturer, Simon Rushworth, armed me with a wealth of industry contacts, first class writing experience, and a proactive skill set, which ensured I was hungry and confident when I graduated and came to look for graduate roles. These connections still prove to be useful today, and the experience that Simon provided helped mould me into a highly employable graduate.

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

Journalism is an industry built on being proactive and questioning everything. Throughout my degree, both skills were pushed on a daily basis, and the development of these skills has helped me progress and gain promotions in current, and previous job roles.

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

While studying is important, it was the social side of Northumbria that I loved the most. With so many students, from so many different backgrounds, you're always meeting new people and learning new life skills, which is great for building your confidence ahead of professional life.

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

Think carefully about the course you want to do. What interests you? What would you like to do when you graduate? Think about yourself, and what you want to achieve, not what others tell you to do. Northumbria University has a huge variety of courses to offer, and it's about finding the one that is right for you.

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