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Andy Robinson

Career Path: Technical & Creative Director, Venture Stream Ltd.
Location: UK

I have always been interested in design and went to a high performing secondary school which focused more on traditional academia than the arts. For my interests, there were only a few universities around which seemed to have a pedigree for high quality, modern design and multimedia courses and Northumbria was a natural fit.

What are you doing now?Andy Robinson

I started an ecommerce consultancy in 2014 with two other people specialising in design, development and digital marketing. Now a team of 25 specialist designers, developers and expert consultants offer industry-leading ecommerce solutions which encompass everything I learned at Northumbria plus all of the business acumen I've picked up since graduating.

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

The location was one - I love the North East and am incredibly proud to bring in a significant amount of business to the region. The nature of the course was the other as not many universities at the time offered new media degrees that seemed to cover the areas I wanted to learn, they either focused exclusively on computer science or graphic design. Northumbria was one of the few that offered something in-between.

What was it like studying at Northumbria?

Excellent! The environment, range of lecturers and varied subject matter always ensured projects and modules were neither the same nor boring.

How connected was your course with industry?

We had various lectures from local industry professionals demonstrating real-world experience. It certainly helped to set a benchmark of what's expected post-graduation.

What was the best thing about your course?

The varied and avant garde nature of it; we were covering new design practices, emergent technologies and platforms and applying a wide range of skills to a wide range of subjects.

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

It gave me the rounded knowledge I needed. I was always a 'jack of all trades' and wanted a varied education to help me have a wide-ranging skillset for my area of work.

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

Digital Design & Development mostly. Though I don't do too much hands-on work creatively now, it certainly helps in setting expectations of my team and ensuring work is realistic, ideas-driven and possible.

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

During A-levels, you're sort of lumped with friends or those who feel pigeon-holed into studying a certain topic. At University, you're with laser-focused like-minded individuals who have the same visions, ideals and objectives as yourself and it's a great atmosphere in which to thrive.

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

Go for it. Fundamentally, your experience and education will be exactly what you make of it.

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

Progressive, rewarding and enjoyable

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