Studied: Level 3 Creative Media Production
Progression: HND Media Production
The highlight of Lauren Withers’ time at the college so far is seeing her documentary on screen at Birmingham’s Mockingbird Cinema.
The documentary was a heart-warming story about aplastic anaemia, a life-threatening blood disorder that affected her younger twin sister, Emily and brother, Jack.
At the age of 9, Lauren was a blood marrow donor for Emily who underwent a transplant. Five years later, Jack also underwent chemotherapy after receiving a transplant from a donor in Germany.
“I found it emotional to make the film and watch it back,” said Lauren. “Without those bone marrow transplants, Emily and Jack wouldn’t be with us today.
“The film was a way of sharing their stories. It showed what we went through as a family and raising awareness of the condition.”
The documentary was narrated by her mum, Jo.
Her success with the documentary has made Lauren even more committed to pursuing a career working behind the camera. Her next step towards this goal is to study media production at Birmingham City University.
“I love the practical nature of my HND. The same goes for my Level 3,” she said. “I enjoy being given a task or a project to do – either on my own or as part of a group – and then working out the best way to bring it to life.”
Lauren firmly believes that being in college helped develop her skills more effectively than if she had stayed in school. Completing projects such as making a music video, a photography assignment and re-creating a scene from a classic movie has proved this.
A recent trip to Barcelona as part of her HND course has also been an opportunity to improve as a film-maker.
“Seeing a different part of the world is always fun and seeing it as film-maker is even more exciting,” continued Lauren. “18 of us went. Our tutors gave us the task of making a vlog-style guide to the city. I learned some more new ways of doing things, so it was definitely worth going.
“My understanding of what working in creative media is like is even stronger now.
“The feedback I’ve received from my tutors after submitting each project and assignment has always been constructive, but fair. This is a big help for when I’m at uni and enter the industry for real.”