Review of the Student Journalist of the Year shortlist
Posted Friday 16 November 2012
This month Mind asked me to write a review of this years nominations for the Mind Student Journalist of the Year award. As a previous winner I was more than happy to oblige. Now before I start I must come clean and tell you that I know two of the nominees, both Oliver Perkins-Gibbons and Victoria Aitchison. However this is inconsequential because the standard of entries this year is very high. This category has varied types of media; two films, an article and a digital magazine.
Ashley Hammer: In and Out of Shadows
Ashley Hammer, from the London College of Communication submitted her final year project In and out of Shadows. A touching film that tells the story of a young boy who self harms. It is a truly powerful film with interviews from both the mother and son who are trying to wrestle with the issues they are going through.
This film gets to the heart of the issue, tackling both living with some one who self-harms and being some one who self-harms. It is a very personal story and Ashley’s access to the family really allows her to get to the crux of the issues in hand.
Ed Tarlton: Boys Don’t Cry: A Personal Perspective
Ed’s personal account of living with depression at University. His article is astute and impactful with great personal insight. “In 2008, after long periods of almost continual low mood, I was diagnosed as suffering from depression. This marked the start of a journey that would see me brush with self-harm and eventually leave me contemplating suicide.”
Ed studied at Nottingham University and his article takes us through his battle with depression and how he began to over come his depression. Through his experiences and connecting with the reader he educates them in how mental health is not the defining part of a person.
Oliver Perkins-Gibbons: The Hidden Cost of University
“Welcome to a world that goes unreported, a world where young people are taking their lives, a world where help isn’t always around the corner”.
Oli’s investigation focus’ on student suicide and what is done to prevent it at university. His films tells us the story of two students from different universities who have both suffered from mental illness. There are also interviews with an MP and mental health professionals. The film really gets to grips with the core issues facing students with mental health issues, and through diligent investigation uncovers the shocking statistic that over the last three years there has been a 15% increase in reported cases of mental health issues in universities.
Victoria Aitchison: You Must Be Mental
You must be mental is an online magazine that tackles the stigma of talking about mental health head on. “This project is all about scrapping the idea that refusing rehab is cool and instead works towards making the idea of talking about mental health fashionable."
Victoria who is a fashion journalist created the website for her final year project whilst studying at the London College of Fashion. It has a great mix of articles with interesting interviews with fashion designers and illustrators as well as articles discussing mental health. It is a really interesting website that also sign posts people to accessing support too. It is a different approach to discussing mental health which definitely breaks down the stigma around openly talking about the issues by sharing good human interest stories and experiences.
All in all this years entries are very strong and very varied. It shows just how important this issue is to the next generation of budding young journalists.
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The annual Mind Media Awards are on 19 November, recognising and celebrating those who have successfully challenged the myths and stereotypes that surround mental health problems.
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