Rupert Ibbotson

Current student

Course
Creative Writing MA
Study area
Arts, English and Drama

Once you’re a postgraduate, the ball is in your court. You are essentially free to make your own way (obviously with guidance) but the emphasis is on you and the directions you want to take.

What were you doing before you joined Loughborough?

I was a student at Queen Elizabeth’s High School in Gainsborough.

Why Loughborough University?

I was attracted to the ethos of Loughborough – everyone I had spoken to had stressed the fact that it is one of the best universities in the country for student experience, something that I was drawn towards considering I preferred the campus university setup, as opposed to the city university setup. I was also massively attracted to the sporting opportunities presented by Loughborough, knowing that I would be able to train in facilities suited for international level competitors, and that these facilities were on my doorstep – this inspired me because I train nearly every day so having well-priced sporting facilities within walking distance massively swayed my favour towards Loughborough.

What do you enjoy the most about your programme?

I enjoy working in an environment where everyone has a similar interest (in my case creative writing) but everyone is unique, everyone is working towards their own goals, to suit their own interests (mine being experimenting in different styles of poetry and testing the boundaries of poetry).

Describe what it is like to be a postgraduate, and how this differs from undergraduate studies.

As opposed to undergraduate studies, once you’re a postgraduate, the ball is in your court. You are essentially free to make your own way (obviously with guidance) but the emphasis is on you and the directions you want to take. You will not be given essay titles on a plate, like at undergrad; you will instead be tailored by experts in the respective areas you are interested in, and these experts will help you to develop yourself into the fields you are interested in.

Describe a day in the life of a postgraduate student

Admittedly, I am an exceptionally lazy student but, importantly, I am always engaged. The majority of my time is taken up by visiting places of interest and by reading works which intrigue me or could aid my own writing. If I see something of interest (an amusing scenario which could be made into a piece for example), I write brief notes which can then be built upon at a later date. As a creative writing student, this is something I am constantly engaged in; this by no means, means that I am constantly working, I’d call it more remaining engaged with what is going on around me (as yes, that does mean I follow the news and keep myself up-to-date with what is happening in the world, as stories can, and are regularly, built from such events – look at most comedians).

How do you like to spend your time away from your studies?

Aside from my postgraduate studies, I chaired the Loughborough University Freestyle Kickboxing Team for the 2016-17 season, something I took a great deal of personal satisfaction from, having been a member since my first year. The club was a family away from home for the duration of my time at Loughborough (and many of my most memorable and unmemorable of nights were spent with the club). I also joined the Shakespeare Society at the backend of my first year, and have partaken in seven plays since then. Again, the Shakespeare Society was another family away from home and I met a lot of my university friends through both.

Why did you decide to study?

I wanted to take my interest in the subject to the next level. I was interested in and enjoyed studying the subject, there was no other incentive.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Realistically, I am unsure. There are many opportunities to be taken and I would lie if I said I knew which one I will take. My main current considerations are; doing a PHD (specialising in researching Celtic mythologies in either Scotland or Ireland); doing the PGCE and becoming a secondary school English teacher (because it was my secondary school English teacher who inspired my study of English at undergrad); and searching for work within my local theatres (as I am interested in all aspects of the theatre, both onstage and backstage).

If you could give one piece of advice to a future student, what would it be?

It will seem that everyone and everything will inundate you with new information in your first few weeks of university. This is normal, and is something every student will have gone through; don’t let it dissuade you though, do your own thing; quoting a very cheesy motivational quote, ‘you are the maters of your own fate’ – at the end of the day, it’s your university experience, and you should just enjoy it.