So you want to be a creative?

Combining formal study with practical experience is the best way to start says Dr Jacinda Woodhead, editor and artistic director at Overland magazine. A VU graduate herself, Jacinda prepares the University’s arts students for work in creative industries by providing internships at one of Australia’s most distinguished literary journals.

“At least twice a year, Overland takes on work placement interns from VU. Based at the Overland office for a day a week, interns help with assessing submissions, updating our Pitch Page, structural and copyediting for the online magazine, sourcing images, social media promotion and other general publishing tasks. They also get the opportunity to take a special online edition from callout to publication.

VU interns are always independent thinkers with a lot of ideas, which is something that’s obviously nurtured by a learning environment that encourages debate, interrogation and creative thinking. They also develop a great deal over their time with us, and gain a lot of confidence in their abilities. VU’s strong ties to industry ensure students have access to learning in the workplace – a huge benefit that should not be underestimated. All of our recent interns have gone on to work in the industry.

I started out by volunteering at Overland myself, which led to joining the editorial team. Not long after, I started a PhD in creative writing at VU, where Overland is based. Writing under the tutelage of three extraordinarily talented and generous supervisors, who between them had decades of supervisory experience, was hugely rewarding.

Not only did I learn how to conceive of, develop, drive, refine and complete a research project, I also honed the skills that I now use on a daily basis in the publishing industry – including the art of embracing and working with constructive feedback to make writing better.”

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Hear from more of our Arts graduates

  • Aboriginal cultural educator and actor Nathalie McLean (Meeanjin, Qld) designed a creative way to teach the newest people about the oldest culture.
  • Dr Anne Riggs’ work in art therapy is helping to change lives by resolving grief, loss and trauma.
  • Benjamin Laut has used skills and connections gained at VU to co-found an award-winning film production company