Music business and media student Hollie

Why changing my degree to music and media was the BEST decision for me

Music Business and Media student Hollie Strzyzewski gives us the lowdown on why she changed course and is loving exploring her Radio 1 presenter ambitions on this degree.

Why did you choose music business and media at Brighton over other courses – what was it that really stoked your interest?

“My story of how I chose my degree might be a little different to someone else’s!  I actually came to Brighton to study English Language as I studied that at A level and really enjoyed it, however when I went to the taster sessions I realised it wasn’t really the best choice for me as I wanted something maybe new that would challenge me by still keeping my interests at heart. I followed that gut feeling and looked at other courses in the media realm as I had studied Media Studies at A Level too.

“I found Music Business and Media BA(Hons) and thought this was the best decision for me. I’ve had a passion for music since I was a small girl, I have danced since I was two and attended musical festivals with my parents (my first being Glastonbury which is pretty epic!). So my music passion has always been pretty big but something I never really KNEW much about…

“I looked over the course and realised I could spark my creative side with the video modules and also learn about the industry and radio which is the route I thought (and still think now) that I want to go down. The course overall has been really helpful and has had much more variety in the things I’ve learnt than I thought it would…

“It just goes to show to always follow your heart and gut feeling!”

You’ve only been in Brighton for three months, what’s it been like living here so far?

“Living in Brighton has been everything I imagined it to be, It’s been the best and I wouldn’t have changed it for anything or any city! That being said, I do have to address the fact there have also been some challenges, and it’s important to remember that not everything you see all the time goes easy. During my time here, I’ve worked two jobs to keep me afloat during my studies, it’s been a struggle but finding the friends and learning to be grounded and graft hard has been a real learning curve for me. I also now have the best time management skills!!

“Living in Brighton has been not only been the most exciting experience along side all the amazing music scenes but also helped me grow into a young adult with responsibilities away from home.

“I praise Brighton all the time for its diversity, its acceptance and the fact it can throw a pretty good party… I’ve even been trying to convince my mum to move down here once I finish my degree!”

About you… who is Hollie, what does she love to do?

“I think in the least obnoxious way possible I’d like to think of myself as a driven individual, always striving for more and always wanting the next thing, no matter how long it takes. There are downfalls to that too of course, as every achievement is still an achievement and it’s hard to learn not to be so hard on yourself once you’ve accomplished those goals.

“I like to think I’m a bold character, I’ve never found guilt in turning up to university in no make-up and crocs and I’ve always prided myself in wearing the things I like to wear no matter how trendy or out there they are.

“It’s really important for young people and especially women to have a voice. I stick up for what’s right, and I’m not afraid to voice my opinion (within reason). I think I’ve grown up with this attribute as I was never the most quiet of girls at school! I keep my morals close to me.

“I enjoy the power of music, it’s the closest thing we have to magic. I love the way it makes me feel and the way it brings people together. Music festivals and gigs are my favourite (to be specific anything in the house and techno world). I enjoy running and ‘trying’ to be healthy, sometimes that’s near impossible as a student though, but it’s essential for me to make sure I have some time for just me.

“Connection is important as an individual I think and is also something that makes me, me. I love to surround myself with people who have similar interests and who are on a similar journey. It helps my direction and focus. Sometimes it isn’t just as straight as that, but that’s life.  As someone who left their hometown and rarely goes home, I left a lot of people behind but looking back on it, it’s the best decision I made. It’s how you grow as an individual.”

What are you most excited about for the next few years of uni?

“In the next year of uni I’m most excited to gain my degree (of course) but also have the feeling that I’ve accomplished something on my own that’s mine. Learning something new is important for your mental health and I’m excited to see what I can achieve and all the creative things I can accomplish during my degree and different modules that music business and media holds.”

Hopes and dreams… do you have specific career aspirations?

My hopes and dreams have never really been the clearest, hence the last minute decision of changing course! However as I’ve followed my degree, I’ve used Brighton to its full potential by gaining experience at two radio stations and really getting stuck in with the music. I say this at 21 and that I’d love to work in the music industry… Radio 1 is a big dream or maybe being a DJ which I’ve been practicing also… I’d also enjoy working along side some talent agencies which is next in line for me to gain some experience on…

“I’m still so young and things might change, but remembering that that’s okay is all that matters!”

A new student is browsing uni websites not sure what to do – what would be your words of wisdom for this time in life?

“Browsing your next step for the future at such a young age seems like such a daunting thing to do, it’s also so much pressure. You’re still so young.

“I think it’s important to remember that it’s okay not to know at 18 what you want to do with your life. This is the time where you make mistakes, spend all your money, gain relationships and experiences that shape you to who you are. But if I was to give some main solid advice it would be to just get involved and try.

“The more you delve into things and try them, the more you can rule out and understand what you don’t and what you do like. Start small, look over the courses, really weigh out ALL your options, you could even come to Brighton for a day with your friends, see if you like it (this includes university or not)… There are so many opportunities out there!

“Also never stress if you pick a degree, you come and you want to change, there’s people here for you that can help.

“This is your journey and only you’re in control, you’ve got this!”

Find out about studying Media courses at the University of Brighton.

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