My background and A-Levels
As a brief introduction to my higher education Journey, I wanted to highlight some of the things that I did after I left year 11. I decided to study German, History, and Geography at A Level in Ulverston as I knew that I needed to achieve three A Levels to go to university.
Studying for a bachelor’s degree was always something that I had envisaged for myself, I just didn’t know what I was going to study. I had initially considered studying history at university since I really enjoyed my history classes at school. It wasn’t, however, until year 12 when I found out that I could study languages at university. Languages had always been a passion and hobby of mine and so I began to do some more research on where to study and what I would need to do to be able to get a degree in languages.
BA: Modern Foreign Languages, Lancaster University
Having applied to a range of universities including Lancaster University, Newcastle University, UCLAN, Sheffield, and Warwick, I eventually decided on Lancaster University because it was close, it scored highly in terms of language teaching, and I had also visited the campus previously and really liked it.
Whilst at Lancaster, I studied an undergraduate degree (also called a bachelor’s degree) in Modern Foreign Languages, specialising in German, Spanish, and Italian. Languages were a huge passion of mine growing up and in school and so doing a degree in them was the perfect option for me because it allowed me to deepen my knowledge of things that I absolutely loved whilst also achieving a higher education qualification.
My undergraduate degree was four years, with a year abroad / placement year in the third year of the course. During this year I moved to Germany and taught English in a grammar school followed by a period studying at a Spanish university. The degree, as a whole, was a fantastic opportunity for me to meet like-minded individuals and deepen my understanding of languages, other countries and their respective cultures. I fell in love with languages all over again, became fluent in three additional languages aside from English and quickly realised that my future career would be in the language and translation industry in some capacity, which quickly led me to consider my options for how to achieve this.
MA: Translation Studies, Lancaster University
After having finished my undergraduate degree, I then decided to stay at Lancaster for another year to complete my master’s degree in Translation Studies. It was during this final one-year degree that I was able to really specialise and focus on high-level areas of languages and translation. I received highly specialised training in translation for the medical, legal, literary, and marketing fields, all of which have enabled me to start my own freelance translation business.
Tips for those considering university.
My advice to anybody considering higher education would be to research your options and make yourself aware of the huge possibilities out there. If my German teacher hadn’t mentioned studying languages at university, I might not have realised, and my life would have looked completely different to what it looks like today.