Third-year students from the Journalism BA Honours course concluded their final project, working on the website Voice of London, with an awards ceremony on Friday.
For their final project, the students were given their own live news website for which they produced a variety of content in a range of genres from arts and entertainment, lifestyle, news, audio/visual and sports. They were tasked with promoting their articles on social media and used platforms to liveblog events such as parliamentary debates and protests across London.
Awards were given to the Best News Story on the site and Best News Story in each section, which the students themselves voted for in December, as well as awards given by the module’s tutors.
Drew Alexandra O’Keefe won the overall award for Best News Story with her articles ‘My mum broke the Enigma code: The secrecy of Bletchley’ and ‘The Bletchley girls: Remembering the brains behind the battle’.
Best Audio was awarded to Daniel Taylor for his weekly podcast ‘A Week in the News’, while Best Video went to Ashleigh Swan for ‘Inside London’s hidden arcades’, and Best Picture Gallery went to Neringa Ruseckaite for her coverage of ‘Thousands of candles light up gloomy October in Dalston’.
Best Infographic went to Catarina Nascimento Moreira, and Best Political Coverage went to Scott Mathew. Best Series Idea was awarded to Abigail Obina for her ‘Surviving London’ series on housing and employment, while Luca Staccini won the award for Best Use of Social Media for his work promoting articles on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The Extra Mile Award went to Alysia Georgiades, Hannah Wilson and Niamh Hutchings for their work throughout the semester.
The site editors, who were also given awards, included Tatiana Soloman, Niamh Hutchings, Emily Yarwood, Zubair Karmalkar, Jillian Keith, Drew O’Keefe and Hannah Wilson.
A new award presented this year was for Best Topical Examination, specifically looking into courageous women. This was a joint award won by Derrian Douglas for her article ‘She Said: Breaking the Harvey Weinstein story’ and Tia Jones for her piece ‘Push Out Prejudice Episode 1: The realities of stripping’.
Throughout the project the students were guided by their tutors David Gilbert, Steve Hill, David Spencer and Aasiya Lodhi. They were also joined by alumnus Rahul Joglekar, who was a reporter and producer at the BBC for over 10 years.
David Gilbert, Senior Lecturer on the Journalism BA Honours course, said about the awards: “We were really impressed with the students’ portfolios this year, not just because of the angles they chose but because of the range of treatments. We saw some dynamic video, some intelligent infographics, which engage with the audience, but also the scale of the stories tackled.
“We had a fantastic response to the terror attack in London. The group snapped into action, reporters were on the scene and we got audio from eye witnesses. We also had very good political coverage on election night. The website was kept up to date throughout the night and one of the students also did a very good job in tweeting out results and dramatic moments. All-in-all the coverage was really excellent.”