Front of House Assistant
The Science Museum

Front of House Assistant
The Science Museum

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Vanessa J

00:00:02 My name’s Vanessa J and I currently work at the Science Museum as front of house staff but I went to Drama College and I am an aspiring actor, as it were. I think I was about 13 years old when I decided that I wanted to be an actor. Can’t remember, there wasn’t a moment when I, it kind of hit me. I, it just became something that I, that I did but I really enjoyed and I would think about all the time.

00:00:29 Like, when I was at school I wasn’t, I wasn’t the best behaved and I would muck around. I was a bit of a, yeah, I was a bit of a troublemaker really. And when I started doing acting and started doing extra classes and, you know, doing drama groups it really gave me something to focus on. I grew up in a very, quite a small community and my mother used to take me to Aberdeen which is my nearest city and that was kind of 40 miles away and it just gave me, you know, I was in a new world there and I didn’t know anyone and these people didn’t go to school with me so they didn’t know what I was like.

00:01:06 And then I could just, I felt I could be myself more and I didn’t have to, you know, conform to what, you know, I was, people in my village were supposed to do. And by the time I was 16 I felt, I felt past school in a way. It’s probably quite an immature decision I think, but I decided I wanted to do acting and there was nothing more I could do at school. So, I went and did NC which is a national certificate in Scotland and then an HNC, which is a higher national certificate. That meant I had to leave home.

00:01:41 So, I left home when I was sixteen. I was completely not ready I think. It was, it was really hard. And then I went to live in this, in the student accommodation which was, it was like a little bed set. After a few months I started to, I think I just started to grow up I think, and just started to take responsibility for things and then I made a friend there and we moved in together and it was actually, it was amazing because it was, it felt like I was, now I was away from home and I was kind of living on my own and it was really fun.

00:02:18 And, yeah, I got a good mark after I finished in Dundee College and then I started auditioning for drama schools. It was the most nerve-wracking thing I think I’ve ever done, is auditioning for drama school. It was really hard. And you know, you’re putting yourself out there. You’re exposing yourself and, you know, sometimes, I mean, a lot of time you just get a letter saying thank you, but no, good luck for the rest of your life. You’re like, thanks. But Wells College were kind enough to offer me a place.

00:02:46 Drama school has its ups and its downs and it’s, it’s so intense because you are, you know, you’re given a lot of criticism but I learned so much. I mean, and I think I really changed as an actor and as a person from like, first year to third year. In ten years time I think I would like to be an actor as in acting is just my job and I don’t have to do anything to support myself. And, you know, I know it’s gonna be hard for me to get there but I, you know, small steps at a time hopefully and hopefully I’ll get somewhere.

00:03:24 It might not work out how I plan it in my head but, you know, along the way you meet people, you do different things. I’ve, I’ve had loads of weird jobs and unpleasant experiences, pleasant experiences, but it’s all part of life I think and I suppose now I’ve kind of grown up a bit. I ca-, I realize that, you know, things aren’t always going to go my way and, you know, it’s not gonna be fun all the time but you just have to take what you can from life I suppose. Each day at a time. ENDS


Vanessa works at The Science Museum, front of house, but her heart is in performing. From the age of 13 she has dreamt of becoming an actor and through hard work and study, gained her place at Wells Drama School. Having graduated she is now pursuing her dream one day at a time.

More information about Receptionists

average salary

The UK average salary is £28,758

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

11%  male 
89%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future Employment

Future employment?

? Receptionists receive and direct telephone calls and visitors to commercial, government and other establishments.
There are no formal academic entry requirements, although many employers expect entrants to possess GCSEs/S grades. There are a variety of relevant vocational qualifications available. NVQs/SVQs in Administration are available at Level 2 that encompass various aspects of reception work. Professional qualifications are also available.
  • Receives callers and clients and directs them to the appropriate person or department;
  • Records the details of enquiries and makes appointments and reservations;
  • Answers, screens and forwards or otherwise deals with telephone enquiries;
  • Supplies brochures, pamphlets and other information for clients;
  • Records details of visitors, issues security passes and informs visitors of any actions to be taken in case of an emergency;
  • Maintains reception area in good order.
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