Trystan Ap Owen

University of South Wales : BA Drama and Theatre

Trystan Ap Owen

University of South Wales : BA Drama and Theatre

Originally from: Aberystwyth

School/college:Ysgol Gyfun Penweddig

A Levels: Welsh, Drama, Media and the Bacc, and Religious Studies for A/S.

What advice do you have for prospective students?

When choosing your university, use the Coleg Cymraeg's app – it's a very easy way to find a course you want to study and it identifies every University in Wales that offers the course and all the information about the courses. Attending open days is a really good way to choose which university to attend, as it allows you to see what the University has to offer, such as the facilities, and is also an opportunity to meet with course leaders! Another piece of advice is to talk with your family, teachers, friends and acquaintances who have been to University or who are there at the moment, and get their views about particular Universities or courses. I would encourage you to go onto University websites and follow them on social media to see news from the University – to see what interests you.

Why did you choose to study Drama and Theatre?

I chose to study Drama and Theatre since I studied it at school and took part in extracurricular activities performing from an early age. It's an extremely creative field which interests me greatly. My aim is to make a living from a career in the creative industries.

Why did you choose to stay in Wales and study through the medium of Welsh?

I wanted to stay in Wales because I wanted to continue my education through the medium of Welsh. I wanted to live in the Capital City because the creative industries are growing from strength to strength there and I wanted to be part of that. There were also scholarships available to study through the medium of Welsh and the scholarship was a big help to me.

Studying through the medium of Welsh at University has been an eye-opening experience for me, and I've seen that there are many opportunities in the workplace if you've studied through the medium of Welsh. Many companies look for Welsh speakers in the workplace, and since I speak Welsh and have studied through the medium of Welsh I am more employable. I also succeeded in gaining a language skills Certificate and undertook work experience arranged by the Coleg Cymraeg.

What advice would you give students who are starting at university?

The best advice for the first day at university is be yourself, you don't need to pretend to be someone else! Also, everyone around you is in the same situation and everyone wants to make friends so just go for it, make the most of your first few weeks at university and don't be shy!

What is it like to study through the medium of Welsh?

Fantastic! The numbers on the Welsh-medium courses are smaller, but that allows you to get to know everyone on the course and the tutors a bit better. There is also a Welsh Language Society (Gym Gym) in every University in Wales which enables you to socialise with Welsh speakers at the University and at other universities.

Were you concerned about studying through the medium of Welsh?

I wasn't worried about studying through the medium of Welsh because it's my first language. But, many of the students don't speak Welsh at home or are less confident, and the University has a lot of support available for them e.g. a language tutor, one-on-one sessions with your tutor and a Welsh language student voice representative. 

Did you win a Coleg scholarship?

Yes. I applied for a scholarship because the course I wanted to study qualified for the funding (you can check if this is true for you by going on the Coleg Cymraeg's website or app). All you had to do was to join Coleg, free of charge, and complete an application form with a kind of personal statement – very similar to the one you need to write for UCAS. I was fortunate enough to receive the main scholarship, worth £3,000! Applying was such a simple process! And there's nothing stopping you from doing the same thing!

What would you say to students to encourage them to apply to be a Coleg ambassador?

I would recommend being a Coleg ambassador to everyone! It's a brilliant opportunity to build your CV and to gain experience in the workplace, and get paid for it. The world of work is very competitive so it's important to take every possible opportunity. You also get to know prospective students and you gain experience travelling around Wales visiting schools, Eisteddfodau, UCAS fairs and more! You also make friends with the other ambassadors and the Coleg's staff. The experience also gives you the opportunity to work and to develop your presentation skills, and the Coleg trains you on giving presentations, which is very handy for presenting assessments at University! The free Coleg Cymraeg hoodie you get is also another great advantage of being an ambassador!