Ketevan Dotchviri, originally from Batumi in Georgia, moved to Edinburgh in 2018 after successfully applying to Queen Margaret University's (QMU) MA Arts, Festival and Cultural Management course.
Passionate about the arts industry, Ketevan explains more about why this postgraduate course spoke to her and what her experience at QMU has been like so far.
Tell us a little about yourself such as your hobbies/interests that are related or not related to your course of study.
I love arts in general, it is a part of my everyday life.
I am an amateur photographer and I also used to sing. I have a background in marketing and management, so somehow the course is a combination of my interests and hobbies.
Why did you choose to study at QMU and what attracted you to the course?
The most important reason why I chose QMU was the course itself. I want to work for festivals and this course seemed to be one of the best among similar options.
The second reason was that I liked the University itself with its very positive reviews, modern building, area and facilities.
What have you most enjoyed about your course? What has been your highlight?
I’ve particularly enjoyed my 'Arts Management in Practice' class which gives us the opportunity to get in touch with many interesting people and decision-makers in the arts and cultural sector, have interesting conversations and see the process from an insider’s perspective.
What have you learnt, or which particular activity has been the most interesting?
All classes are structured with great attention to detail. I enjoy all of them and consider all of them equally important and useful.
How have your lecturers supported your learning?
I appreciate their support, they are always ready to help.
What have been some of your challenges with the course and university life? How have you overcome them?
The first two weeks were very hard. Dealing with a lot of information and various challenges was very hard. I did not do anything special to overcome them; as some time passed I began to adapt and gradually started to enjoy the process.
Do you have any advice for students who might be interested in this course?
I would advise students to check their QMU email accounts before their arrival, as most of us did it just after the course started. For international students it is absolutely recommended to do some reading in advance where possible.
As for general advice, I would say that if you want to have big results in a short time, you have to be prepared to deal with some stress. If arts and culture is your passion, if you want to expand your network and work alongside some very supportive people around, then this course is definitely for you.
Enhancing our student learning and personal development
Have you won any awards/scholarship/internships, etc., that have helped you develop skills and experience? If so, please tell us about them.
I won two government scholarships in my country to fully fund my studies and living costs.
What are you plans after graduation? Tell us about your ambitions and where you see yourself in the future?
After graduation I will return to Georgia, will establish my own company together with my friends, which will be dealing with arts and music festivals.
Life as a student at QMU
What’s your ‘top tip’ for making the most of being a student?
I guess it would be not to get stressed with the assignments and enjoy this happy period.
What has been the most valuable lesson that you’ve learned at university?
I think the most important thing I’ve realised is that no matter when you decide to start something new, you can always do that and big changes are absolutely necessary.
[Published February 2019]
"If arts and culture is your passion, if you want to expand your network and work alongside some very supportive people around, then this course is definitely for you."