I didn’t know that I wanted to study journalism until my last year of high school. Since I was little, I had been jumping from one thought to another; my options ranged from being a dentist to an actress, but it wasn’t until I realised that writing was my passion that I decided to study journalism in RGU.
I am from Spain, and my first plan was to move to Madrid to go to university there. My circumstances changed which led me to Scotland, this is when I began my journey at Robert Gordon University in 2017.
RGU’s approach to teaching is very practical. From the first year of the course, lecturers focus on teaching us how to be journalists, rather than the history of journalism or teaching us English grammar. They teach us Journalism as a profession and what it is like to work as a journalist.
Speaking to my friends from Spain who study Journalism, their courses are too theoretical. Spanish higher education is based on theory and very little practice and whilst that works for some courses, journalism needs practical experience. Students need to grasp the immediacy in stories and learn to interview people on the spot which can’t be taught in a lecture hall.
From the first year in RGU, we have been encouraged to interview different people and go out to find stories. In the second year, we had a “Newsday” in which we had to create a radio news bulletin for five minutes in one morning. In the third year, we are required to create a magazine of 52 pages with features, articles, interviews, photos and many more. Not only do we study a practical course but we also have the freedom of choice to write about the topics of our interest, which is amazing!
As part of my course, I got to experience first-hand what it’s like to study in Brussels. I spent a semester living and studying there for my Erasmus exchange programme.
I am grateful for the experience because it has shown me another culture, another method of teaching my degree, and has enabled me to meet so many friends and travel to different places in Europe.
Today I am exactly where I want to be, and I’m really thankful that RGU has become part of my journey.
Natalia Núñez Bolaño