Performance students are praising the University of Wollongong for its support of student-driven productions.

Toni-Lea Porter was involved in last week’s student-led performance ‘Fire Island’. She said the university “is definitely supportive of its performance students, but like most degrees, as a student, it is up to you to make the most of it. Essentially, you will get out what you put in.”

Porter said the independent learning experience could help develop qualities for all areas of life.

“You have to regularly practice a high level of resilience, employ your creativity, work co-cooperatively with many different personality types, and remain calm and focused in very high-pressured environments,” she said.

“I think the regular practice and strengthening of these skills can only be beneficial and advantageous in any area of life, professional or otherwise.”

Head of School of the Arts, English and Media (TAEM), Professor Sarah Miller said the opportunity for student-led initiatives was extensive.

“It gives students the opportunity to engage in real world practices that they apply competitively and they have to think through he project both conceptually but also creatively and then they have to deal with all the logistics of that,” she said.

“It gives people the skills and the opportunity to take responsibility for their own work.”

Performance students use UOW spaces after hours to rehearse, and for public performances. Student and actor Elizabeth Payne said at least 12 hours a week is the minimum rehearsal time for a show in the lead-up to opening.

“The university is really accommodating and genuinely want to see our ideas come to life- it’s really cool,” she said.

Details on upcoming performances, including plot descriptions, cast lists, pricing, and locations can be found on the TAEM website.