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Former Media Makeup Student Reflects on her Time at South & City College Birmingham

Rafaela Mateus, otherwise known as Raffy, has not long graduated with a degree in makeup and hair from University College Birmingham (UCB), however, her journey to become qualified started with a Level 2 Beauty course at South & City College Birmingham’s Hall Green campus.

The college caught up with Raffy to share her experiences and reflect on her time at college.

What did you study with South & City College?

“I originally enrolled on a Level 2 Beauty course, and when I found out they also had a makeup course, I progressed onto Level 3 Media Makeup and Hair the following year. After that, I progressed again onto the Level 4 and 5 Specialist Hair & Media Makeup, a course that was run in conjunction with UCB. The final year of the degree was spent studying at UCB.”

What were the most memorable moments?

“The lessons were good and enjoyable, we did so much. The work experience was also good, it helped us so much to learn about the industry more. The absolute best trip was going to watch The Lion King in London. It was an absolutely unforgettable experience.”

Why did you choose South & City College for your studies?

“I had heard good things about the college when I was at school. I liked how many different courses were on offer. There is something for everyone.”

The last time we spoke to you, you wanted to work in TV and theatre, is this still the case now that you have finished university?

“Yes, I still want to work in the TV/film industry. I would love to be a key makeup artist in the future, which is a dream of mine. I love the makeup and special effects aspect of it as well as hair. How you can change and transform people into something completely different. I also enjoy and want to do more work in theatre too. I particularly want to get more work experience in fashion and editorial shoots.

I think as a good makeup artist, it’s important to be able to work in multiple areas and to have a portfolio that shows a bit of everything in the makeup industry.”

How did you find studying at university?

“University was amazing. I loved the experience, even though it was hard having to study from home. I was happy that my time at college prepared me really well for university, by giving me the skills and knowledge I needed to succeed.”

What is your dream job or project to work on?

“My dream job is to be a key makeup artist in the film and TV industry. To work with amazing directors, producers, and actors as well as other makeup artists. I would love to work on big projects such as the Marvel films franchise.

I would also love to work in big theatre productions in the West End and Broadway, to be part of amazing productions and to bring characters to life.”

Thank you so much for your time, Raffy, we look forward to continuing to follow your career and you achieving your dreams. We wish you every success.

Click here to view Raffy’s portfolio

If you are an ex-student of the college and want to share your experiences since leaving, contact our alumni team! It’s great to share your story and motivate others. To provide a testimonial or to see the achievements of our former students, visit the alumni page.