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Friday 2 October 2015

Solent Alumnus nominated for national award

At a time when Solent has been named as one of Britain’s top 20 universities for graduate start-ups, alumnus Craig McDougall has been nominated for the 2015 IPSE best national freelancer award.

Having graduated from his film and television studies degree in 2013, Craig set up his own production company, Broken Physics Productions, with fellow graduate Emma Lieghio. Both Emma and Craig work as creative directors and video producers.

If they were stranded on a desert island, Craig would take his camera, nail clippers and business cards in case he met a potential client, and Emma would take her iPod Classic, coffee and Nakd bars so she could keep working until they were rescued.

To enter the competition, Craig submitted a write up about what he does and why he felt it made him stand out.

He said: “I’m feeling excited! Regardless of the result, I’m looking forward to the opportunity to meet new people and be involved with such an exciting competition. At the very least I’ve been considered to be one of the best freelancers by IPSE and that’s very humbling.”

Craig is up against four other people and will be going to London at the end of the month to pitch to a panel of judges. The award ceremony will take place in November.

This isn’t the first award that has come Craig’s way. Last year, Broken Physics Productions won an award for outstanding graduate start-up at the Solent Employability and Enterprise Awards for Excellence.

Emma and Craig with their award for Outstanding Graduate Start-Up

Emma and Craig said: “It felt great being recognised by our University for all the hard work we’ve put in. It really helped solidify us as a company and we have made some great business connections and relationships as a result.”

With a successful business to their names, we asked Craig and Emma what advice they would give Solent’s current students:

“Spend your free time at university wisely. Get involved with projects outside of your course and start to build a portfolio in your chosen field.

“If you’re looking to go into film and television then we couldn’t recommend the course enough. The teachers are second-to-none and offer great one on one support throughout the course. It really helped us figure out what we wanted to do after university and has shaped our career from the ground up.”

The most valuable thing Craig learnt at Solent? “Be pro-active! Never wait for anything to come to you, you should constantly be working towards something.”

For the second year in a row, Southampton Solent University has been named as one of Britain’s top 20 universities for graduate start-ups in this year’s Higher Education Business and Community Interaction Survey.