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ALEX WICKENS

‘I attended Northallerton School from 2005 to 2012 for all my secondary school education. I left with A-levels in Art, Biology, and Physics. Funnily enough I dropped out of French A-level on the first day and was tempted to take graphics instead but then switched to biology, which was quite convenient as I then went on to pursue that at Oxford University for my undergrad degree. I think this gives a sense of how uncertain I was of what I wanted to do with the rest of my life let alone career.

Whilst at Oxford I found myself specialising in animal behaviour and ecology with a highlight being a field trip to Borneo to study tropical forest ecology, but the vast majority of my time was spent in University theatre productions. I acted on stage as well working behind the scenes in costume design and stage management which gave me the opportunity to work on west end stages as well as touring Japan twice. I also had a brief stint as a drag queen and event planner.

After leaving Oxford I moved to London and continued to work odd jobs in theatre and film projects but was struggling to make ends meet.

After numerous applications, an internship and a few temp catering jobs, I landed a work experience placement at a science film production company, which then led onto my first full TV role as a development researcher. I got the bug for media production and decided to pursue a Masters degree in Directing and Producing Science and Natural History at the National Film and Television School. This allowed me to combine my love of the arts, media and culture with my academic training in biology. I’d never lost my fascination of the natural world but had always felt my interest lay more in communication and activism than research, so this felt like the natural progression.

Since graduating from my masters I moved to Bristol and have been working in wildlife documentary production since. It’s been great to find something that amalgamates all the various training and experiences I’ve had up to date – but I’m sure there’ll be something different for me in future too, I like to keep things interesting!'

Follow the link to view the 'Ask the Alumni' interview with Alex: https://loom.ly/faLxAhk

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