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Oliver Reeves

Oliver graduated in 2020 with a BA in Linguistics. During his studies, he developed an idea for his own startup platform, Compiled. Oliver also works as a Senior Web Developer at The Verve Group.

About Oliver

Current occupation: Senior Web Developer at The Verve Group and Founder of Compiled

Current location: Darlington, UK

Degree studied: Linguistics BA

Oliver Reeves outside 10 Downing Street

About Oliver’s Career

Describe your current role:  

I'm a Senior Web Developer at The Verve Group, a financial services company which is changing the face of finance. I’m part of a team building innovative technology which will act as a one-stop-shop for financial advice firms. 

I'm also the founder of Compiled, which is a software-as-a-service startup currently being used by the UK government. I started Compiled alongside my studies at Newcastle University.  I'm grateful to have been supported by the University’s START UP service. 

The university also really helped me outside of my degree: I worked part-time as a Student Leader on campus, and the START UP service supported me when starting Compiled.


How did you get into this job after studying Linguistics at Newcastle? 

I've always had an interest in both natural and programming languages. After my first year at Newcastle, I was able to specialise and choose modules with a focus on Computational Linguistics. I learnt Python as part of my degree. My dissertation analysed the spread of information content in 1.3 million German Twitter ‘tweets’. 

Studying Linguistics at Newcastle University

How has studying Linguistics at Newcastle helped you in your career? 

When I was a student, I often heard about the benefits of the ‘transferable skills’ acquired during a Linguistics degree. With the benefit of hindsight, I feel that I really understand what was meant by that. I didn’t just learn some fantastic domain-specific knowledge - I also learnt how to write about complex topics clearly and concisely. In my current role, I feel this really helps when writing any technical documentation or explaining technical problems to stakeholders with a non-technical background. 

What advice would you give to a student interested in studying Linguistics?  

Go for it! To be completely honest, I had no concrete idea of what I wanted to study before stumbling across Linguistics. It was a great foundation for my career, where there was plenty of opportunity to specialise (quite a few of my friends are speech therapists, for example). It also provided transferable skills if you wanted to keep your options open.

What was the best thing about studying Linguistics at Newcastle? 

I really don’t think any city can rival Newcastle for student life. I made some life-long friends and memories. The lecturers were extremely knowledgeable, helpful, and always up for a laugh - a group of my mates and I once turned up to a lecture in Santa costumes and handed out candy canes - no questions asked! The university also really helped me outside of my degree: I worked part-time as a Student Leader on campus, and the START UP service supported me when starting Compiled. 

Oliver Reeves as a student holding a sign with his name and the Newcastle Uni logo