I am an enthusiastic, young Producer with experience of working in several cultural and educational backgrounds. I am from Longbridge, a deindustiralised town in Birmingham, and 10 years ago, I was working as a sales assistant in the Jewellery Quarter. Today, I hold a PhD in English Literature and am beginning my career in the arts. I currently work as Operations Manager for Friction Arts in Deritend, Birmingham, and have delivered several Arts Council-funded projects with young people at the focus.
I support Birmingham City and usually - when there is not a pandemic - I go and watch them play on Saturdays. Since volunteering in Antigua, Guatemala, in 2016, I have been learning Spanish and have recently returned to where my love of reading all began in Harry Potter y la Piedra Filosofal.
I am a freelance education and arts Producer. I am currently Operations Coordinator and Producer with Friction Arts in Birmingham. Having spent years away from home researching, writing, and delivering large-scale project, I am pleased to be working at Friction with its immensely talented artists. In the role, I support the Directors run the company by managing projects, recruiting artists, writing reports, applying for funding, and running Friction's various marketing campaigns. I also support the organisation's various artists produce innovative projects with communities in Birmingham. In particular, I am helping to set up a new project called Culture Club, run by artist and maker Sarah Kaur. Initially a pilot, the 10-week programme is created for and by the participants, focusing on their backgrounds and experiences as the 'culture' in Culture Club. I can't wait to see the results.
As recent as November 2020, I was Project Manager with Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature, and I run the Arts Council funded Letters of Solidarity campaign, which asks young people aged 14 to 25 to write a letter about the 'moment through which we are living.' I commissioned writers to deliver three workshops, have produced a vigorous online campaign, building and maintaining audiences, and written an activity pack for download and distributed it to households experiencing digital poverty. On this project, I am working with young people to co-produce and co-edit a new anthology of the letters.
The role builds on my experience and relationships working in Nottingham's arts and education sector with the City of Literature. Previously, I was Project Officer for the Arts Council funded Young City Reads project (2019-2020). The project was two-fold: I managed 14 Young Ambassadors in 12 Nottingham secondary schools, providing personal and professional development opportunities, such as one-to-one mentoring sessions with professional writers, and the occasion to network with sector leaders at a learning heritage symposium in which they produced a 'Manifesto for Change'; I also delivered MyVoice, a city- and county-wide creative writing competition for 10 - 25 year olds, which saw the winners published in an anthology, Speak Up, and who benefited from writing-focused developmental opportunities. I also organised a celebration event to commemorate the winners and to launch the anthology in March 2020, but owing to the COVID-19 outbreak, I cancelled it, and re-made it for online delivery as Virtual MyVoice.
Alongside my doctoral research, I performed several key project management roles, including the NPO National Justice Museum's Journey to Justice: Nottingham project, an exhibition and city-wide events' programme as part of the museum's relaunch in 2017; and Movements, a one-day, international conference, which brought together artists, activists, researchers, and educators from six continents to Nottingham Contemporary. Moreover, I have also run projects (in collaboration with) key cultural and educational institutions in Nottingham, including University of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham College, New Art Exchange, and Nottingham Playhouse, and worked with Nottingham's National Literacy Hub, What Next? Nottingham, and the ChalleNGe network to advise on city-wide projects, strategy, and investment.
I am also a dedicated fundraiser, having raised over £110,000 from public bodies between 2015 and 2018 to deliver my masters and doctoral research, as well as several collaborative national and international projects and activities. As a producer working with Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature, I fulfilled the projects' commitments with a mixture of private and public funding of over £100,000.
In May 2020, I joined the Young Poets' Stories team as a research assistant. In the role, I build on my project management experience in the arts and my humanities research background. I work with researchers at Nottingham Trent University and University of Exeter to deliver a long-term project that charts experiences of the winners and highly commended young poets of the Foyles' Young Poets of the Year Award. I produce creative content such as blogs, build and nurture relationships with the young poets, parents, and the board, and write content for and manage the project's website and Twitter account.
I have also worked as a copywriter in many capacities. On the Young City Reads, Journey to Justice, and Movements projects, I produced copy for marketing and promotional materials, including newsletters, online mailer content, articles, blogs, reports, and content for social media platforms for campaigns, and briefs for commissioning artists, events, and (funding) proposals.
Since March 2019, I have worked as a copywriter with one major client, the start-up Otium Candles. With a mission statement that focuses on the wellbeing of its customers, the company claims to supply the most eco-friendly candle, and I support and feed into Otium's marketing strategies, write and edit copy, and contribute to their online content.
I studied English Literature at Nottingham Trent University, graduating with first class honours in 2014.
Following this success, I pursued research at Nottingham Trent and completed a masters by Research (Distinction) and PhD in English Literature in 2015 and 2019. My research focuses on social class in contemporary writing in England, especially the figure of the 'chav' and other character types that make up the contemporary 'working class', such as refugees, women, and millennials.
My experience at Nottingham Trent saw me work and develop skills representing the university locally, regionally and nationally. As a PhD candidate, I was elected as Nottingham Trent's Student Advisory Forum representative for the Midlands3Cities Consortium (2015-2017) where I sat on several committee meetings, including management committee. Moreover, I also represented the university at local, national and international research conferences, including in Aotearoa New Zealand (2017), and represented the university supporting and delivering public events.