Friday, 27 January 2017

Returning to DCU in a new guise

Pity the Masters students of Multi-media and Film & TV studies at DCU! Next Monday I return to my old Uni, nearly 31 years after I left with my Communication Studies degree, to teach the screenwriting module for both these MAs.

When I arrived in the campus back in 1983, it was so new. There were 2000 students in all - we knew everyone to see if not by name - and it was still called NIHED, the National Institute of Higher Education, Dublin. It was a strange hotchpotch of a course - we had 40 hours per week in the first term! Some of it was stimulating, some of it we couldn't see the reason for, some of it offered glimpses of areas we would pursue. We did everything from TV, radio, photography, graphics to psychology, linguistics, statistics and mass communication theory. (And I know I've left something out!)

The course was still in its infancy. The Uni itself was just three years old so the first Communication Studies students had just finished. (It was a four year course compressed into three; we did work experience in the second summer and our thesis in the third.)

But I got to publish my first writing magazine, help set up the drama society and direct my first play (Zigger Zagger by Peter Terson. The cast was enormous; we had three rehearsals running concurrently for three months.) And I went back to direct my own first play just after finishing.

DCU then was somewhere so new that wecould start things and that was fantastic. As was the group in my year, all of us with different ideas of what careers the course would help us into.

I can't wait to go back!

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