A Bachelor of Arts gave Courtney Sina Meredith access to networks and opportunities that would have taken her decades to cultivate single-handedly.
Career: Project manager for the Faculty of Creative Arts at MIT
Programme: Bachelor of Arts
Subjects: English, Politics and International Relations
“My job is to lead the development and implementation of commercial opportunities across the Faculty of Creative Arts at MIT. The role builds on my previous experience in commercial partnerships management in London and my time as an Arts Advisor for Auckland Council.
“My time in the Faculty of Arts was one of formative exploration. I liked the vision of becoming a critical thinker, which is a lifelong objective – one that I continually strive for. Having a degree from the University of Auckland has given me access to networks and opportunities that would have taken me decades to craft single-handedly.
“The highlights of my writing career include being invited to the House of Lords by the BBC in 2014 to discuss the future of Britain, launching my first book of poetry at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2012, the publication of my first play in the same year, and my residency at the Bleibtreu Berlin in Germany in 2011.
“In my professional work highlights include managing the commercial partnership accounts of global banks and government departments in the United Kingdom, working as a research specialist for Pasifika literature sourcing new titles internationally and my extensive work as an Arts Advisor for Auckland Council that allowed me to work with some of the region’s most promising artists.
“My mother and my aunties studied at the University and I loved all of their graduation marches down Queen Street. I never even considered attending a different university – the University of Auckland felt familiar to me and I liked the idea of studying in Albert Park on sunny days.
“I’ve been very lucky to have wonderful support from so many great people – my family first and foremost, and a whole network of scholars, professionals, thinkers, artists and activists worldwide who have very kindly reached out and embraced my ideas.
“The faculty, in particular Distinguished Professor Brian Boyd, have continued to track and support my career progression. Brian was my very first lecturer, and he reinvented Shakespeare for me – breathing new life and new meaning into the texts.
“My papers in English rhetoric and composition, and my time in the Faculty of Law, shaped a love of questioning and analysis that built on my naturally curious personality. At the University I was invited and encouraged to interrogate every word of every text that I came across.
“I would encourage future undergraduates to think outside of the box. The classes you attend are full of bright and wonderful thinkers who often want to make a living in the creative industries one day, but I urge you to consider them as colleagues – not competitors. One day you will all need each other, in one way or another, and it’s best to foster healthy working relationships now, instead of believing that those things begin in the workforce.”