A Q&A with the VP of the GSA society
Guildford School of Acting is one of the most highly regarded theatre schools in the UK. Discover how joining the GSA society has enriched university life for current VP, Odhran McNulty, and why he would recommend being a part of it.
Guildford School of Acting (GSA) prides itself on delivering world-class conservatoire training and nurturing the next generation of performing arts extraordinaires. The GSA society is made up of the vibrant community of performers, performance makers and creative practitioners studying at GSA. Take a glimpse into GSA society life from the society’s very own VP, Odhran McNulty. Discover Odhran’s highlights of being part of the GSA society and why he would recommend joining the society.
Why did you join the GSA society?
I joined the GSA society as an opportunity to become closer to my fellow students. GSA prides itself on being a community; this is one of the things I found so special about GSA when I first auditioned. I decided to run for VP of the society because I wanted to give back to this community and encourage this bond that we have created.
How has the GSA society enhanced your university experience?
The GSA society has enhanced my university experience as it has pushed me to create balance in my life. It has allowed me to focus on my training as an actor whilst juggling other responsibilities. Equally, it has encouraged collaborations with so many talented individuals within GSA, allowing them to teach me so much from a creative viewpoint.
Can you tell us a bit about the fundraisers and events you have been involved in with the society?
Our job on the society is to provide events that allow GSA students to blow off steam. Training can be mentally, physically and emotionally draining and so we aim to set up events that allow people to let loose and forget about the stresses the course can bring. This year we have hosted themed balls at Christmas and in spring, as well as many charity events that have supported arts related charities, including a 14km obstacle course that many GSA students enjoyed taking part in.
What have you learned from being a part of the GSA society?
The society has taught me so much about working in a team and bringing something to the table. The society works as a democracy and we vote for what we would like to see changed. This has taught me a considerable amount about compromise and being able to listen to other people’s opinions, and choosing what’s best for the GSA student body.
What are the best things about being involved with the GSA society?
One of the best things about being involved with the society is seeing the events come together successfully. Also, getting to meet so many people from different backgrounds. I really enjoy the social aspect of this role.
I have met so many talented, intelligent and caring people being in this role and it has allowed me to meet possible future colleagues and lifelong friends.
What has been your biggest highlight from the GSA society?
My biggest highlights of this year were planning the Christmas Cabaret and the Christmas Ball. These events were met with such excitement and dedication from all those involved that it was a real bonus to stand back and watch the GSA community come together and celebrate a successful first term. Also, Fresher’s week - getting to meet all of the new students coming in and offering them my advice from my previous year was a big highlight for me.
Do you have any advice for people who are considering joining the GSA society?
My advice to those considering joining the GSA society would be that it is a great way to achieve balance in your life. Time management is a massive part of our industry and developing this skill while training is definitely something that being part of the society allows.
Do you think you have changed since joining the GSA society?
I definitely think I have changed from joining the society. It has taught me a great deal about leadership, as well as compromise. The society has taught me a lot about being practical and efficient with the time that you’re given.
How has being a part of the society helped you grow personally?
Personally, I believe the society has helped me be more patient with myself and to understand that everything will happen in time. It’s taught me to be efficient with ideas and always push for a bigger goal. I’ve learnt to always use my time wisely but equally, to push myself to the best of your ability.
Would you recommend the GSA society to future students?
I would recommend the GSA society to future students. The society has allowed me to grow closer to people in my year, on my own course and across other courses. It has also taught me a lot about myself as a leader and as a colleague. Being part of the society is a great opportunity to support the GSA community and help it grow.