Current employer: Bridgwater College Academy
Current job title: KS1 teacher
Current location: Taunton, Somerset
“Experience is key. Make sure that you take the time to gain lots of experience within schools and working with children as this will help you to confirm whether or not it’s definitely what you want to do. This process will also give you the necessary experience to take with you into your career.”
Tell us about your career path since graduation.
I decided in my final year of university that teaching was the route I wanted to take. I decided to do a PGCE in early years education closer to home. Once I completed my PGCE, I went straight into a job teaching KS1.
What is the most difficult thing which you have faced in your career?
I work in a challenging school which has its own difficulties every day. Those difficulties are also what makes this job so amazing and so rewarding. I have definitely never had two days the same!
What, if anything, would you do differently if you could?
I think if I was going to do anything differently, it would be to do my masters straight after finishing university. I am now looking at how I can fit my masters alongside teaching full-time.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to get in o the same line of work?
Experience is key. Make sure that you take the time to gain lots of experience within schools and working with children as this will help you to confirm whether or not it’s definitely what you want to do. This process will also give you the necessary experience to take with you into your career. Personally, whilst at university, I worked in America as a camp counsellor for a summer, I took a placement in a nursery, I spent a few weeks in a school, and I undertook training to become an online mentor for BeatBullying. The University has a fantastic volunteering service which I used.
How did studying at Plymouth help you?
Plymouth gave me the opportunity to study some really interesting modules that I would not have been able to study at other universities. Many of these modules still influence my teaching today.
What is your favourite memory of studying at Plymouth?
I have many wonderful memories of studying in Plymouth. I was fortunate enough that at Plymouth I explored different types of education and visited different places of education within Plymouth and the South West. Although one of my favourite memories was our final lecture where we went up onto the Hoe with food, drink, and blankets and had a huge picnic in the evening and said goodbye to everyone. It was an amazing way to finish three years of studying.
Do you stay in touch with other University of Plymouth alumni or lecturers?
I have kept in touch with many University of Plymouth alumni and many of them remain my closest friends. It gives me a great chance to travel the country to visit them.
Would you recommend undertaking a course with the University of Plymouth, and why?
I always recommend Plymouth to people who are looking for a university to attend. It’s in a beautiful location (I spent many days by the sea), and it is also very homely as most of the campuses and halls are close together. Coming from a small town, this was something that made me want to go to Plymouth.
Charlotte Dunn interview
After doing a placement through the University I decided that teaching was the route I wanted to take.
Charlotte Dunn talking in The House at the University of Plymouth about her studies and subsequent career.
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