When I was asked by Dr Rebekka Kill to apply at Leeds Metropolitan University as a lecturer my heart was racing, this was a opportunity to share knowledge with students from someone who had no formal education. That’s right I don’t have a degree or college education, I have worked in the music and technology field but my learning is from experience. I was so nervous because I had never spoken to an audience or stood in front of a class before, it was nerve racking and when I got the job a new chapter was about to begin.
I am dyslexic and hidden it well over the years or so I thought, my wife was so supportive in my endeavours from music to writing stories but this was a challenge I was seriously worried about. “How the hell am I going to teach a class of second year students” well this is where Ken Robinson comes in, a very good friend Ilka was working at Penguin books and she gave me a copy of The Element to read and showed me his TED talk, if you haven’t seen it please watch the link below.
This book is so inspiring and for anyone who works or aspires to work in the field of music or the arts just go buy it. He interviews so many people who don’t exactly have a great education background but in their element they shine and have made careers from it, Richard Branson, Paul McCartney and Matt Groening (The Simpsons) to name a few of the interviewees share stories of how and why your element is essential. This book gave me confidence and the ability to go and challenge myself as a lecturer and for 3 years I worked at the University part time with a college Nicola and we wrote new parts to the module and showed students how to create events in the field of Nightclub entertainment management. We introduced them to promoters and club owners who in their element were successful and proactive, this made the module unique, spending time out of the class and in the field they desired to work in. I have since spoken to students in Glasgow about a career in music spanning 25 years with slides in the auditorium of the college, this was only possible due to to ‘being’ in my element.