At uni, you learn stuff, get tested, then forget it. What actually stuck with me, as I embarked on the adventure of a placement year, was a professor who taught me the importance of goal setting, in particular state-of-being goals. He taught me that professional, status related, money-oriented goals never truly satisfy you. The satisfaction from these types of goals will quickly diminish and you are quickly fixated on the next big thing.

When I joined bbd, I set a few state-of-being goals which I wanted to achieve during my time.

  • Be happy
  • Leave feeling satisfied that I’d had an impact
  • Be confident pushing my comfort zone

I was initially worried that I would get lonely, moving back to Bournemouth, leaving my comfort blanket of friends behind, paired with the deadly combo of a long, cold winter. But in fact, I haven’t felt alone since starting bbd. This is because the people of bbd are always lifting each other up with kindness and love, always up for a laugh, always up for a pint. The people here have shown me how to give and receive kindness, and have demonstrated how small acts of gratitude go a long way. I leave with new skills, satisfied I have achieved the goals I set out to, and more.

Lauren said these 6 months would fly, and she was not wrong there. She also said bbd has a ‘work hard, play hard’ ethos, again- not wrong there- the social events here are like none other. To put my time here in a few words, it’s been epic, which is why this ending is bittersweet. Bbd has been my first love. Thank you for giving me the most ridiculous, random, fun jobs I will ever have. I’m going to miss the ‘wtf’ faces as people walk past and take a glance at my screen to see the random shit I am making.

Here’s a quick insight into a few of the tasks I did…

Quiz master
When Imi handed over this responsibility on my first week of being here, the pressure was on. I believe (I hope) that the quiz has evolved during my time. It now features a really weird collage caption quiz every wednesday (yes, I do have too much time). Lauren and Conor would be on the other side of the table managing 68 Aruba projects, and I’d be there mashing up photos of bbders, questioning if the texture of the baked beans looked good.

When David asked If I wanted to storyboard a recruitment video, my response was ‘What’s a storyboard?’. Anyway, I got stuck in, and had a blast, and I think the final animation is decent, if I dare say so myself, see here.

The Great British Make-Off
In my first few weeks I witnessed how so many people at bbd have a great sense of fashion. I thought it would be super cool to have some kind of bbd lookbook. Lauren and Connors’ response to this pitch was: ‘nice, but make it into an event’. A few months passed, and I finally got the call up to host my event: a fusion of Rupaul’s drag race and the Great British Bake Off: The Great British Make-off, a night of education and making fashion out of recycling. Following this I put (a few too) many hours into making a magazine ‘Making sustainability sexy’. Super grateful for this opportunity, I hope it inspires a few people to do good things for the planet.

Whilst I hate to leave, every ending is a new beginning. Change is uncomfortable, but greatness cannot be achieved without it.

Thank you bbd, for giving me the tools to grow. I hope I’ve had an impact, because you certainly have impacted my trajectory in great lengths. Not sure what the future holds for me, I guess graduating will be a good start.

Peace out,

Millie Aldridge
Placement student
Quiz Queen
Sustainable Goddess