Lakeside Arts
Part of University of Nottingham
Lakeside Arts

Creative Pathways interns at Creative Academy event

University of Nottingham Creative Pathways Academy
and Creative Focus 

The programme has two strands of delivery – Creative Pathways Internships open to Graduates of the University of Nottingham, and the Academy and Focus events open to any student at the University.


The UK’s only city-wide paid cultural internships programme – Creative Pathways Graduate Internships offer seven graduates per year the chance to work for six months in one of Nottingham’s leading cultural institutions. 

Successful applicants have the chance to get a wide range of vocational experience, including event planning, organising and delivery; finance and fundraising; budget administration and management; and marketing, publicity, communications and PR – providing them with a significant springboard into a future career in the sector.

The internships start in October, are exclusively for students who meet one or more of the eligibility criteria and who graduate in the 2020-21 academic year (i.e. between August 2020 and July 2021). They are exclusively for students from the priority groups listed below. This is to ensure that students from backgrounds underrepresented in higher education can fully access the opportunities available to all students and to improve social mobility. To be able to apply, you must be a home fee paying student graduating in summer 2021 from the University of Nottingham, want to gain practical experience to support your future career development in the creative and cultural sector, and meet one or more of the eligibility criteria detailed below:

Eligibility Criteria
  • Have been in local authority care/looked after
  • Have a declared disability
  • Be from a black and minority ethnic group
  • Be a mature student (21 or over at the start of your course)
  • Be a young carer
  • Be under 25 and estranged from your family
  • Be in receipt of a core bursary
  • Be in receipt of a Nottingham Potential Bursary
  • Be a refugee
  • Your home address is in a neighbourhood where participation in Higher Education is low.
    • This can be checked by:
      • Enter your home postcode (i.e. where you lived before University) into the 'Contextual offers' postcode checker on the University of Nottingham's website:
      • If 'You may be elidible for a contextual offer' displays following searching, this indicates your home address is in a neighbourhood that meets the above criteria.
Cultural Organisations

The internships are based across seven Nottingham's cultural organisations: 

  • City Arts
  • Dance4
  • Lakeside Arts, University of Nottingham
  • Nottingham Contemporary
  • Nottingham Playhouse
  • Nonsuch Theatre
  • UNESCO City of Literature.


Aqua Quotation Marks

The Creative Pathways Internships give a welcome flexibility to your professional development. The partner venues are eager to provide experience that will benefit future employability, and are attentive to your needs and ambitions."

Gianluca Scatto, Nonsuch Studios



The best parts of interning with the Participation Team at Nottingham Playhouse are engaging with the community and getting to know our wonderful participants. We’ve recently been able to welcome many of our participants back to in-person sessions at the Playhouse, and I’ve particularly enjoyed going into schools to deliver our ‘Shine’ outreach programme."

Adam Collins, Nottingham Playhouse


The Creative Pathways Graduate Internship made me realise that a career in the arts is by no means unattainable. It's given me the skills and confidence to apply for other creative roles. Through collaborating with colleagues on marketing, project support, and day-to-day admin, I feel like I’ve got a great insight into different creative careers and what I would suit best. I feel integrated and a valued member of Dance4. No two days are the same – one day I could be creating website and social media content and another I could be dedicating a dance to my armchair in a Zoom workshop! I’m so glad I'm at Dance4 to learn how they support artists in their research as well as sharing their resources with young aspiring dancers – I would absolutely consider interning at Dance4."

Emily Tregale, Dance4


Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature is part of an international network of creative cities, which means I am given the opportunity to work with people from all over the world, as well as having real responsibility to assist on projects with exciting organisations such as PEN International and the Women's Prize Trust. I'd wholeheartedly recommend the Creative Pathways Internships and would advise anybody who's considering applying to go ahead and do it!"

Phoebe Stafford, City of Literature


Applications close Monday 28 June

Apply now

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Meet and hear from inspirational individuals, start to understand and build links with cultural organisations, and gain insight into a vast range of careers available in the creative sector.

Creative Focus events are open to all University of Nottingham students, especially those who have come through a widening participation route to University.

Presentations from our previous speakers, including Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, CEO at UK MUSIC and Christian Hewgill, BBC Newsbeat Broadcaster and Podcaster, are available below.


Guest Speakers: Chrystal Genesis, award-winning podcaster and broadcaster; David Osei, Head of Marketing and Communications at Creative Access; Cynthia Okoye, film, television, and publishing agent at Curtis Brown, London

Black Excellence in the Arts brings together guest speakers Chrystal Genesis, David Osei and Cynthia Okoye to discuss their own career pathways, to share information about the breadth of roles within their respective strands of the creative industries, and to reflect on the increasingly important role of culture in society. Students will have the opportunity to gain practical advice and learn directly from professionals working across some of the most exciting and fast-growing areas of the creative sector.   

About the Speakers (click to expand)

Photos of speakers

Chrystal Genesis runs Stance which is an award-winning arts, culture and current affairs podcast formed in 2017. Chrystal is a presenter, senior producer and arts & culture consultant from London now living in New York City. She runs and hosts Stance and has presented on BBC Podcast Radio Hour & BBC Front Row. She works as a Producer for Neon Hum Media. She produced the launch of HuffPost's weekly women's health podcast Am I Making You Uncomfortable?, and worked as the lead programmer creating courses, workshops and performance programmes for young people aged 15-30 at Southbank Centre and executive produced Southbank Centre’s youth podcast Violet Nights.

Cynthia Okoye joined Curtis Brown (whose roster ranges from novelists such as Margaret Atwood (The Handmaid's Tale) and the estate of Ian Fleming (James Bond) to screenwriters & directors like Mickey Down (HBO’s Industry), Shola Amoo (The Last Tree), Hossein Amini (Drive, Gangs Of New York, Star Wars) to actors including BAFTA nominee Paapa Essiedu (I May Destroy You, Gangs Of London), Stanley Tucci and Robert Pattinson). Having graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2008 with a degree in Law (LLB), Cynthia worked with agent Amanda Davis across her list of writers and directors in the theatre, film and television department before setting up her own. Cynthia’s mission is to find and represent unique filmmaking talent and enable them to build careers in the UK film and television industry, and beyond.

David Osei is Head of Marketing and Communications at Creative Access. He has experience of promoting educational, training, and employment opportunities to young people around the world for the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the UK Foreign Office, and most recently for the Mayor of London. Outside of work, he is an avid theatre-goer, loves travelling to learn about different cultures, and (sometimes) enjoys the rollercoaster that is supporting Spurs. 

Image from left to right: Chrystal Genesis; Cynthia Okoye, David Osei



Guest Speaker: Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, Chief Executive, UK Music



Guest Speaker: Christian Hewgill, BBC news, sport reporter, bulletin presenter and journalist, BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat 



Guest Speakers: Sarah Longthorne, Narrative Designer; Harriet Eden and Daniel Punch, Technical Art & Programme, from award-winning game developer Sumo Digital



Guest Speakers: Angela Mann and Ann-Marie Franey, Great Northern Events


Supported by the Office for Students, Lakeside Arts and the School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies in collaboration with the Department of Cultural, Media, and Visual Studies.