C U At Cardiff University – By Ashley Smith

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We started our day with a trip to Cardiff University to hear from a guest speaker. Angela Graham is a documentary film maker with over thirty years of experience, making programs for Channel 4, BBC, S4C, and ITV. Angela talked about how since 24% of people in Wales speak Welsh, it puts any kind of communication in a unique position. Since about a quarter of the population speaks a language other than English, businesses have to be able to accommodate both. Angela specifically talked about the significance of the TV broadcast stations and how there are some that cater specifically to this section of the population, with all of their programming being in Welsh. As she elaborated on the meaning behind the word Welsh, she got into the history of the word and how it came to be. A point that I thought was interesting was that the English word Welsh translated as ” foreigner, while the Welsh word translated to “companions.” This small detail gave us quite a bit of insight into the Welsh people, as Angela explained that they have not always had the most money or been recognized for the most achievements, but that they are a people who care deeply about the arts and their people.

Angela presented the idea of communication as a way to bridge the gap between different people, and that good communicators are able to identify what people need and how best to portray it to them so they are receptive and are able to be constructive. The best communicator is the person you want on your team, who you are happy to work with, who brings out the best in you and your team and is able to create the best work. Angela then challenged us all to think about the kind of communicators we were, and stressed the importance of effective communication no matter what kind of job you end up in. She then went into how her passion for documentary film making helps her connect people and ideas, how she is able to concur the task of communicating ideas “from I to you to us,” as she put it. To finish up the lecture, she left us with a line of inspiration from one of her favorite poets: “Creu gwir fel gwydr o ffwrnais awen.” Creating truth like glass from the furnace of inspiration.

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