Rich Sutherland


Why the University of Hull is ‘a melting pot of creative talent’

Rich Sutherland experienced the University of Hull first-hand when he studied History with Art History from 2000 to 2003.

Today, Rich is the Managing Director of sobananapenguin, a digital marketing agency in Hull.

Here, Rich shares his memories of life at Hull, how University provided the perfect springboard into his career in digital marketing, and how the city’s alumni network continues to flourish.

‘University played a significant role in helping me to get where I am today’

“I studied History with Art History at the University of Hull from 2000 to 2003, back when social media hadn’t truly launched and websites were just plain ugly.

Fast forward to the present and I’m the owner of a digital marketing agency called sobananapenguin, specialising in social media management and digital content.

Though my degree seems to have nothing in common with my career, it played a significant role in helping me to get where I am today.

The thing I loved most about studying History at Hull was being offered regular opportunities to form my own opinions and express them in a way that was unique and thought-provoking.

No lecturer wanted to read the same old facts repeated again and again without any personal insight, so it was crucial that each student employed analytical techniques and a level of innovation to deliver their points effectively.

I have to admit that my first few essays were pretty dull, but by the time I was writing my dissertation I’d adopted a brighter style that I continue to develop as a professional copywriter.

Despite leaving university almost twenty years ago, I still get to collaborate with fellow alumni thanks to my role as a marketing specialist.

There are multiple local theatre companies that I work with whose members are Drama graduates, such as Brick by Brick and The Roaring Girls, plus I’m often in contact with current students looking to gain experience in theatre production and the communications sector.

There really is so much talent in this city, and it’s fantastic to see that the university never stops being a melting pot of creative energy.

Though I love to travel and get away as much as possible, I’m proud to say that I still live very close to the campus.

Keeping up to date with student developments through social media never fails to inspire me, plus it’s exciting to know that I could soon be working with some fresh graduates when they enter their chosen industries.

That’s the beauty of marketing and PR – there are no limits to the types of projects you can get involved in, sharing interesting activity with the world and making a genuine difference to how a brand responds to the needs of its customers.

Rich Sutherland is the Managing Director of sobananapenguin, a digital marketing agency in Hull. If you’d like to have a chat about career advice or opportunities in the marketing sector, you can contact him through LinkedIn.

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