Backstage at The Lowry: Emma Shalliker, Human Resources Assistant

Emma Shalliker tells us how she started her career at The Lowry as a Casual Hospitality Assistant whilst studying Art & Design. And how the Salford Venue has supported her with training to become a qualified Human Resources Assistant.

I started at The Lowry in 2011 as a Casual Hospitality Assistant whilst studying Art & Design at college. My ‘home area’ was the Tower Coffee Shop but I also worked in the canteen, confectionery and eventually on the Tower bar. I loved gaining customer service skills, work experience and of course the money!

I originally wanted to go inEmma Shalliker - Backstage at The Lowryto fashion but I soon realised that the fashion industry wasn’t for me and swayed more towards mixed-media textiles. In the 2nd year of my course, I felt rushed into applying for university and didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do; I wasn’t ready, so I did another year at college (Art & Design Foundation Diploma) whilst I worked out what I wanted. It was then that I decided my creative work was more of a hobby; I wanted to go into Business and was interested by Human Resources (HR).

I spoke to Siobhan Ogden, HR Manager about doing a work placement internally at The Lowry over the summer. I felt this would help me go onto an HR degree with a better understanding and experience of the field. I loved my placement and felt I’d found the career path for me.
Around this time, an entry-level HR position became available. I went for the job and got it. This was an opportunity I couldn’t miss so I chose not to go to uni. I can study CIPD qualifications on the job, which I would get with a degree. I have built relationships with a diverse range of people and thrive working in a creative environment.

What’s your favourite part of the building?

My favourite part of the building would have to be the galleries! It’s great to be able to nip up on a lunch break.

What’s the best meal in the canteen?

My favourite meal in the canteen would probably be something like pork in apple sauce.

What’s show have you most enjoyed at The Lowry?

The best show I have seen here is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time which was brilliant and the sensory effects helped the audience to understand what it would be like to be on the autism spectrum.