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Beth Mountain

Degree: BA (Hons) Theatre and Performance (Top-up)
Progressed From: Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma Performing Arts
FdA Theatre and Performance at University Centre St Helens

"I’ve learnt so much during my time on the degree, not just academically but personally. I’ve built my confidence immensely, discovering how to be a leader, rather than a follower; a huge personal achievement. I would definitely recommend this degree course, there is ongoing support right throughout your time here, it really is second to none."

Beth, from Warrington, studied her GCSEs at Cardinal Newman High School, before venturing to St Helens College to study the Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Performing Arts.

Enjoying her BTEC studies immensely, she was determined to progress her education. Despite receiving offers from all of the universities she applied to, including a scholarship from a specialist performing arts institution, Beth decided to progress with her studies locally, by enrolling on the FdA Theatre and Performance at University Centre St Helens.

Explaining the reasoning behind her decision, Beth commented, "A key influence in making this decision was appreciating the familiarity of the campus. The two years I spent studying the BTEC at St Helens College allowed me to build my confidence and develop strong bonds with both teaching staff and peers. For me, these are important factors in any decision and when coupled with the quality of the teaching and the degree content, I knew University Centre St Helens was somewhere I would thrive."

Beth's involvement with external projects has allowed her to gain valuable work experience, whilst building industry contacts. University Centre St Helens' central location means students have immediate access to key arts professionals and organisations in the industry locally, including St Helens Theatre Royal and the Heart of Glass.

A real highlight for Beth whilst on her degree was the exclusive opportunity to work alongside professional artists at NIAMOS Theatre, based in Manchester. Beth said, "That was my first solo professional work - I was nervous when I realised I'd be working alongside amazing artists. However, everybody made me feel welcome. The experience gave me so much insight and experience that I have taken into the professional world of theatre."

Speaking about her experience at University Centre St Helens, Beth said, "I learnt so much during my time on the degree, not just academically but personally. My confidence was boosted immensely, and I discovered how to be a leader, rather than a follower, which is a huge achievement for me."

More recently, Beth has had work commissioned by the Heart of Glass and using her performance skills and industry insight from her degree, has recently established a theatre company alongside three other classmates, named ‘Year of the Rat Collective'.

Following her passion for teaching and theatre, Beth has progressed on to her PGCE at Edge Hill University to enable her to become a fully qualified Performing Arts Tutor within a further education setting.