Nikki Aaron, Media Studies, 2007

What are you doing now?

I’m a news anchor, and produce and present my own travel/culture show. The channel, CNC World, is broadcast globally.

I moved to China within weeks of my graduation ceremony at the beginning of 2007. What I had originally intended on being a ‘year out’ turned into somewhat of a never-ending Eastern expedition. 

I was born to write, and living in a country as profound and exciting as China means I rarely experience writer’s block. After freelancing for a couple of years, I launched a bilingual magazine – MetroStyle Bilingual, along with some Chinese friends and former colleagues. This was in 2010, and I’m happy to say that the magazine is still alive and kicking.

2010 was a great year for me; not only did we launch MetroStyle, I was also scouted by Xinhua – China’s state news agency. This is now my full-time job, which I adore.

What were the main reasons you took Media Studies?

I knew I wanted to work in the media industry, but was unsure which particular route to follow. Media Studies enabled me to gain a better understanding of all areas - print, broadcast, and new media; this helped me to pinpoint which areas were of most interest to me.

How would you sum up the experience of studying this course through Derby University?

Without a doubt I would say that my university years were three of the best years of my life. I think that being a student is all about self-discovery, and figuring out the type of person you want to be. 

University helps you grow and in most cases you can walk away from university a much more well-rounded and calmer person than you were when you arrived. 

How did you find the lecturers and the support they gave you?

Colin Dyter was a wonderfully supportive lecturer. He always communicated with his students in a respectful and considerate way - which in hindsight, must have been difficult to maintain at times!

How do you feel Derby has helped you in your career so far?

It’s been instrumental. I was entertainments editor of DUSTED, the university magazine for two years. This helped me to get a better feel for writing, editing and managing a team, and no doubt helped me step into the role of Senior Editor and Creative Director when launching MetroStyle.

One other HUGE detail is that if it wasn’t for the University of Derby, I probably wouldn't have ever dreamed of moving to China. I first came here as part of a University of Derby/Rolls Royce collaboration, whereby graduates were recruited to teach English for CAAC.

"I met some wonderful people at the University of Derby, some of whom had a life-altering effect on me." Nikki Aaron