Courtney Olger

FdSc Media Production

Progression Pathway: St Augustine’s of Canterbury Catholic High School, level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma Creative Media (St Helens College), Foundation Degree Creative Media Production

"I have been pleasantly surprised by the amount practical work I have had the opportunity to experience. I knew from my level 3 work that Creative Media was a practical subject but the amount of time we spend each week using cameras, setting up shoots and really getting to grips with the industry standard equipment is second to none and is really helping me to prepare for a successful career in this fast paced, highly exciting industry."


19-year-old Courtney, from St Helens is currently enjoying the first year of a two-year Foundation Degree with University Centre St Helens, having successfully progressed onto the degree course from her level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Creative Media with St Helens College.

Hearing great things about the Foundation Degree from her tutors on the level 3 course, Courtney decided to explore her options with University Centre St Helens in more detail and was impressed with the array of facilities available. She was also comfortable in the knowledge that her class sizes would be small. Firmly believing that a large university wasn’t for her and confident that smaller class sizes would essentially mean more time spent receiving support and guidance from lecturers, Courtney decided to enrol.

Fast forward eight months and Courtney is now confident that she made the right decision, with immediate lecturer support being on hand whenever needed. Currently studying a range of modules, including interactive media and computer graphics, Courtney has produced a range of posters, to accompany films, and has spent a lot of time getting up to speed with industry standard software, including developing a much deeper understanding of Photoshop. In addition, Courtney is enjoying working with video editing software Premier Pro, whilst also learning the essentials of website building, looking at how to construct a website using HTML code.

Speaking about her time on the degree course to date, Courtney said, “I have been pleasantly surprised by the amount practical work I have had the opportunity to experience. I knew from my level 3 work that Creative Media was a practical subject but the amount of time we spend each week using cameras, setting up shoots and really getting to grips with the industry standard equipment is second to none and is really helping me to prepare for a successful career in this fast paced, highly exciting industry.”

Continuing, Courtney said, “So far, I have had the opportunity to work on a range of live projects and the theory to practical balance has been perfect for me. I have really benefited from the smaller class sizes, as my confidence has developed and my skills, both in front and behind the camera have flourished. I am taught by industry-experienced practitioners, with Phil, my Programme Leader, still working in industry. This offers unrivalled access to industry contacts and keeps the course content current, fresh and crucially, relevant.”

Receiving a brand new camera upon enrolment, as her Study Enhancing Gift, Courtney has been able to enhance her studies by using the camera to complete assignments.

To those thinking of studying a degree at University Centre St Helens, Courtney added: “I would definitely recommend the degree to others. It has provided natural progression for me from my level 3 BTEC and has provided me with a range of opportunities, skills and knowledge that will help me progress from student to successful career professional in an industry I am passionate about. My long-term goal is to work in editing, as it is this element of media that I have enjoyed the most throughout my time at both college and university. Upon graduating, I would like to progress into a role with a large company but long-term, I would love to work for myself, setting up my own business and enjoying the creative freedom that self-employment brings.”