Kate Thompson

English with Creative Writing BA

Why did you choose to study at Loughborough University?

I initially came to an open day, and I thought the campus was fantastic and the course I was looking at sounded great, but if I’m being entirely honest when I left that day, I couldn’t really picture myself at Loughborough. Over the months that followed the communication from the university was incredible, I was made to feel like I was already a welcomed member of the Loughborough Family well before I had even accepted an offer and I started to get more and more excited about the prospect of attending Loughborough as time went on. I also followed all the social media pages for Loughborough University, which made me realise just how much they had to offer outside of my studies. I was blown away! Looking back now, I’m so glad I made the decision I did; I really couldn’t imagine myself anywhere else.

What is the best thing about your course?

It’s really difficult to pick just one thing. The lecturers are fantastic, I love all of them and they really make lectures immersive and interesting. I also love how interactive the course has been, every module I’ve taken during my undergraduate degree has involved a lot of group discussion and engagement. I find that so much more interesting than being talked at for hours on end!

What do you think of the teaching quality and facilities?

Although my course hasn’t really required a lot of specialist facilities, the ones I have had to access are great. Pilkington Library is fantastic, and the computer labs are really good, plus having remote access to the computers even when you’re not on campus, or even in Loughborough for that matter, is so useful when you need to use specialist software!

Tell us about a favourite project/module on your course?

My favourite modules each year have been the creative writing modules (Elephants and Engines, Maps and Motors and Driving On: Writing Towards Publication). I really enjoyed them and I learned a lot about myself and my writing through the workshops. Also the final year “Driving On” module has been so helpful at outlining what options there are for writers beyond publishing their books.

As for a favourite project, I think that would have to be the group presentation for the “Better Worlds” module, where we had to develop our own utopia and explain all the features and functions of it. I got really invested in that project and it honestly didn’t even feel like work!

What kind of support have you had from your department and/or from the University?

The best support system I have had through my degree has been from my Tutor (Kerry Featherstone). Whether university-related questions or personal problems, he has always been available to advise or just listen. At times he has even been the one to reach out to me after noticing I wasn’t quite myself and it really makes a difference, knowing you have that kind of support.

I have also previously had to request deadline extensions for some of my coursework because of changes in personal circumstances and the department has always been very sensitive and accommodating. They would much rather you reach out for help than just struggle through things on your own.

Have you completed/will you complete a placement year whilst at University?

I was due to complete a placement year this year, but my plan changed, partially due to the pandemic affecting the available roles, and so I went straight into my final year.

What do you hope to do when you graduate, and how will your Loughborough degree support this?

The reason I came to university to begin with is because I want to work as an editor in the publishing industry. Since I started at university, if anything, I’m even more determined to do that. While at Loughborough I have had the opportunity to work for Lamplight Press, which is the UK’s first student-led publishing house, and it has been amazing. It has given me the chance to gain invaluable experience which I can take forward and build on in my future career. I also had the chance to tailor my course to suit my goals too, with optional modules like “Marketing and the Magazine Business” and “How to Do Things with Digital Texts”.

What would you say to someone considering your course?

Coming to Loughborough was the best decision I ever made and I’m sure you’ll feel the same! I have loved every minute of my course, it’s never boring, sometimes it can get pretty chaotic (in the best way) and if I had the chance I would do it all again.

How do you find the social atmosphere on campus?

There are so many things for you to get involved in, regardless of what your interests are, and there is always something happening on campus. You have so many opportunities to meet new people whether that is through sports, societies, volunteering or even getting involved in committee and department roles. It’s amazing!

What is your favourite thing about being a Loughborough University student?

Being at Loughborough I genuinely do feel like a part of something big. There is so much mention of the “Loughborough Family” and it really does feel like one, I think that’s what really sets us apart and makes Loughborough special. We win together, we lose together and there is a collective sense of pride in achievement across the university. That has to be my favourite thing about being a student here.

How has Loughborough inspired you?

I feel like I have grown as a person in my time at Loughborough University. I have had the chance to learn a lot both through my course and the environment I’m in, whether that was learning about myself or discovering things I am passionate about. I genuinely do believe that Loughborough has inspired me to be the best and most authentic version of myself, and I have learned that I am capable of a lot more than I ever expected. I’m very grateful for that and I feel proud to be a Loughborough student.