Alex Witty: “Brighton allowed me to be extremely creative and just pretty weird”
Throughout March and April, the University of Brighton Alumni Association is asking alumni to share their success stories. The Brighton Effect campaign sets out to ask our graduates to share how their time at Brighton shaped their careers, impacted their personal lives, and gave them that unique effect on their personal and professional successes. We spoke to Alex Witty, who graduated in 2022 with a BSc(Hons) Product Design, and is the Founder of The Piezo Project, to find out about his Brighton Effect story.
Q: How did your experience at Brighton bring you to where you are now personally or professionally?
Brighton enabled me to think freely and really explore my true interests and passions, which enabled me to grow in confidence and start my own business off the back of my final year project. Brighton allowed me to be extremely creative and frankly, just pretty weird which allowed me to explore my passions without any judgment but instead, support and backing. I can say for sure that without being at the University of Brighton I would not be doing my dream job right now in running my own business.
Q: Share a memory from your time at Brighton:
One of my favourite moments at Brighton came during my final year in lockdown actually. I was in a house just off Lewes road with three of my best mates (and also coursemates) and I was just hit by a wave of happiness one random day as we all emerged from our rooms to converge in the living room to work on our final year project. Everyone was doing completely different projects but all trying to work together in the same space. For example, John was on a zoom with the founder of Club Penguin whilst Fergus was holding himself upside down on some handstand bars he’d made in the workshop and Gamal was 3D printing a water fuelled oscillating shark for his weekly catch-up meeting. I remember looking up from my laptop and noticing the hilarity in the stark difference in interests between me and my friends and how The University of Brighton had brought us all together into this shared space to explore our weird and wonderful passions together. I think perhaps the cabin fever of lockdown twinned with the sleepless nights caused by final year deadline stress made this memory a lot funnier in my head, but hopefully, a slither of that comes across through this story.
Q: Tell us something you are proud of that you have achieved since graduating:
Launching my own business in 2021 after building the foundations in my final year at University is something I’m immensely proud of. I’ve been able to involve my parents in my work which has been incredibly rewarding as well as being able to work alongside designers and artists that I referenced and wrote about in my dissertation.
Q: What does success mean to you?
Success to me means saying you’re going to do something and going through with it and getting it done. It may well not bear fruit but at least you have exhausted that avenue and you know more for it now. Ultimately, if you are improving exponentially day after day, whether it be tightening up your sleep pattern or simply eating cleaner, I think one should only judge success based on one’s previous self, any external comparison is mentally taxing, unjust and destructive.
Q: What wisdom or advice do you have for someone embarking on their own Brighton journey?
Try as many different interests, passions, and curiosities as possible. Don’t be scared of rejection, failure, or embarrassment because ultimately no one cares or remembers what you do besides you. Everyone is too worried about what they’re doing to worry about what you are doing or did. Embrace the uncomfortable, explore your limits, and delve into your curiosities.
Have a great story to tell about your time at Brighton and what you’ve got up to since? We’d love to hear from you! Take part in our Brighton Effect campaign by sending in your own story of success. No matter how big or small, every story counts and we would love to hear them. Find out more about our Brighton Effect campaign and how you can submit your story on our campaign page.