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Alexander Gray

Interactive Media Design

Where are you from?

Louth, Lincolnshire

Why did you choose Northumbria University, Newcastle?

I was impressed by the studio work-spaces and equipment available to students, and the opportunities on offer sounded too good to be true. Interactive Media Design at Northumbria is one of a kind because of the professional standard of the course as well as the area of study. I would even go as far as to say that Northumbria is one of the most prestigious universities in terms of design. I certainly don't regret putting this university as my first choice after A-Level.

What do you think of Newcastle and our region and what are your favourite things to do?

I like meeting up with friends and exploring the city. When the weather's nice it helps, but even when it's raining it's good to explore the museums and indoor activities like the cinema and shopping centres. The whole area has a lot of students and people your own age which is something i'm not used to, but it makes you feel like you belong there.

What has surprised you most about living in Newcastle and this region? What has impressed you most?

It surprises me how clean the city is kept, it makes Newcastle a nice place to live. It's really quite a compact city as well which is good as you can get everywhere on foot (if you want).

Did you find Northumbria University welcoming?  Was it easy to fit in?

I was quite stubborn and shy when I first came to uni so it took me a while to make friends, but by the final year I had become much more involved with my peers and opened up completely as a person.

What have you enjoyed most about coming to Northumbria University?

The independence. It's not an intrusive university, i've been able to get on at my own pace here.

Who has helped you most since you came to Northumbria?

Family and friends mostly.

Who has inspired you most at Northumbria University?

It would have to be tied between the lecturers and my peers. For example in second year I really noticed how good the work of my peers was, which really drove me to focus more. The lecturers have such enthusiasm too, which always made their presentations inspiring.

What is your favourite place on campus?

I liked working in my third year studios in Squires Annexe, but chilling in and outside of the students union bar in spare time.

Have you joined any sports teams, clubs or been involved in any volunteer projects?  Tells us about the highlights?

I joined a society for people interested in Rock music in first year which had some good nights out, but that was only during my first year. I got to know one of my best mates through this which made it worthwhile.

What is the best thing about your course?

The passion of the lecturers and the opportunities they give you. In my third year I had the opportunity to work on a live brief and come up with a concept for an installation at a real visitor centre. We would present to the client with the potential for one of our projects to come to fruition at a later date.

What are the most valuable lessons you have learnt to date?

That, "that will do" will not do.

What do you want to do in the future?  What skills have you learned/improved that you think will be of most use in your future career?

I'd like to work in a design agency, using my interface design skills to work on mobile applications, websites, and promotional material.

Have you worked on any projects with businesses or been on a placement?  What were your most memorable experiences?

In the summer after my second year, I did a couple of projects to keep my design mind active. I designed a brand identity for a new local construction company as well as re-designing a website for a local accountants.

Have you taken up any opportunities to travel with your current course/undertake field trips?  If so, please tell us about them.

We did travel to the visitor centre where our live brief in third year was based. This gave real insight and inspiration, and really helped give us ideas for our projects. This again shows how seriously the lecturers take the course.

If you could offer some advice to students thinking of coming to study here what would you say?

Northumbria definitely delivers. It keeps well up to date and you will leave feeling motivated and ready to pursue a job in what you like doing.

How do you feel you have changed as a person since being at Northumbria University, Newcastle (e.g. confidence)?

We had to do a lot of presentations which has definitely boosted my confidence in speaking to audiences. I've become much more talkative and involved in what's going on.

If you had 3 words to sum up your time with us what would they be?

Motivational, Sociable, Practical

Would you recommend Northumbria University to a friend?


For more information about me, visit:, @alexgra_

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