Success built on passion and hard work

When Millie Pearson was nominated for the Women in Property Student Awards 2022, it underlined what she already knew: her decision to follow her passion – and do it in Derby – were correct.

Instantly inspired

Millie had scoured the country looking for a course that matched her aspirations – her hopes and dreams. And, after visiting an Open Day at the University of Derby, and learning about our BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Venue Design course, Millie knew this was the place for her.

She says: “I soon realised that Derby came unmatched to any similar course in the UK! The career prospects, support and clear enthusiasm from the tutors and students had me sold and instantly sparked excitement and inspiration.”

Millie’s dream is to work for a company specialising in commercial interior design with the hope of moving onto renovation projects. And she discovered a passion for architectural history after studying these modules on the course. This has directed her career aspirations toward combining traditional and contemporary architectures.

This would allow her to bring old, and possibly derelict buildings, into the 21st century, and introduce sustainability and ethically sourced materials into the design. Millie says: “What’s interesting to learn about is how architecture is so much more than buildings. It’s lifestyle, emotions, senses, and activity.”

A female sat in an art gallery looking at pictures

Women in Property Student Awards 2022

Millie has worked hard throughout the course so far. This paid off when she received an email congratulating her for being nominated for the Women in Property Student Awards 2022. This was when she truly realised she was succeeding in her course: her work had been noticed as it was her lecturers who had nominated her.

“Its always great to look back to the first activities in year one and see how far you’ve come,” she says, “the progress made, skills developed and the knowledge you’ve gained."

“I’m currently in the process of organising a placement for the next academic year, and the guidance I’ve been provided with is helping me focus on my career path. I was honoured to be nominated for the Women in Property Student Awards and it has led to interviews, presentations, networking events and CV workshops as a regional finalist.”

A small group of students working together in a group.

Presenting at the Design Charrette

There has been plenty of other opportunities for Millie to shine throughout her course. A group of students were invited to take part in a Design Charrette – a workshop – at De Montfort University, which is held annually for universities in the region.

The invited students were given the task of designing a new purpose for a multi-storey car park in the city centre. After being split into groups, they had to decide on the purpose of the building, the aesthetics, design and business strategy. This was then presented to the attended lecturers and council members.

Millie says: “It was great to meet a range of other architecture students of all years to share our experiences, thoughts and knowledge.”

Perfect balance

Millie is keen to recommend her course to potential students. She says: “If you have a passionate interest in this industry and are willing to work hard for the best opportunities, then it’s the right course for you. If you enjoy interior design but just want that little more architectural knowledge behind you once in the workplace, then this course is the perfect balance.”