Andy James, 2007 graduate

Goal! = Tor! Study German and you might be the next John Motson

Andy James, who graduated from Modern Languages at Exeter in 2007, talks about how a degree in languages gave him the chance to pursue a career in sports journalism.

"The University of Exeter immediately appealed to me with its green campus, friendly atmosphere and highly reputable German department. Once I began my studies, I quickly settled in and enjoyed the various and interesting modules on offer, as well as making plenty of lifelong friends.

The year abroad was my first taste of what doors studying German at Exeter could open. I spent the year as a teaching assistant in Nürnberg and despite a nerve-wracking first few days, I quickly integrated into the local culture, improved my language skills and enjoyed the  ‘Sommermärchen' that was the 2006 World Cup.

Always an avid football fan, I was keen to marry my hobby with the language skills I had garnered at Exeter and once I graduated in 2007, I set about finding a job which would allow me to do so. Following a healthy break over the summer, I came across an advertisement on the internet for a 'Praktikum' writing reviews of Bundesliga matches in Munich.

A month later I had arrived in the Bavarian capital and began writing statistical reports of Bundesliga matches as well as TV scripts for FC Bayern München. The company also provided German commentary for several radio stations, so I recorded a few demos, although it was nothing morethan a bit of fun.

Unbeknown to me, the company had sent my demo to a major TV rights holder who subsequently wanted to invite me for a test. I certainly didn't expect anything to come of it, but to my surprise I was selected to cover a number of international and European matches for various worldwide broadcasters over the coming season.

Since then, the commentary has continued and I have also begun covering Champions League matches on site across southern Germany for, as well as supplying content for the Bundesliga's own English-language website.

Being able to earn a living by combining my degree with one of my passions is a real blessing and I have studying German at Exeter to thank for the opportunity. I was lucky to end up doing what I do now, but I am certain that the same chance would never have arisen had my search been limited to English-speaking countries."

Find out more about studying German at Exeter

Date: 1 January 2009

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