Emily Smith

Emily Smith

3rd-year student, Bachelor of Communication Studies in Screen Production

The flexibility of communication studies appealed to her, says Emily Smith who is studying a Bachelor of Communication Studies in Screen Production, with a minor in Professional Performance Communication and elective courses that focus on writing.

“At the end of my last year in high school, I was still uncertain what I wanted to study at university. I knew I wanted to do something that relates to media studies as I’ve always liked that, and I thought that I wanted to pursue screen production. However, I wasn’t sure what I really wanted or if I would change my mind. What I liked about the communications degree is that we all do the same courses in the first year and get a taste of what each major can offer.

“I’d highly recommend the Bachelor of Communication Studies, especially if you’re like me and unsure of what you want to pursue other than following a hobby of yours. I’m a writer, and for a long time I wanted to be a novelist. I still love writing, but I’ve integrated it into other pathways – I take creative writing elective classes, I write for the student magazine, and writing pops up in my degree all the time. I’m so happy about that.”

A passion for writing
Now in the final year of her degree, Emily has her eye firmly on a career in screen production.

“I want to be a scriptwriter for television and film. I liked the practicality of the communications degree; actually being able to go out and touch the cameras, physically learning how to shoot with them instead of writing essays about it. I came to AUT because I wanted to get out there and write my own films, and hone my skills by practising the work.”

She has also enjoyed shaping her degree around her passions, and loved being able to include courses on writing and performance skills as part of her studies.

“My minor is Professional Performance Communication, which is about developing performance skills for live and media roles. I took it because I have an interest in acting and drama, but it has gone beyond what I thought it was and focuses on connecting performers to themselves and to their other work.

“My elective courses mainly stay in the realm of writing, and include courses on journalism and creative writing. My electives have given me the freedom to follow my hobby of creative writing and hone my skills in this field.”

Advice for other students
Emily has some great advice for other students who are starting their university journey.

“Reach out to your lecturers, and go the extra mile and try to network! It really is your world to do what you want.”

Her other piece of advice is to be open to trying new things.

“Always try new things, even if it scares you. I always found it corny when people say stuff like ‘Always try, even if you fail, because if you don’t try it’s an automatic fail’, but it really is true.”