During lockdown, a group of six Journalism BA Honours graduates from the Class of 2020 launched their own female-run online publication entitled ‘GenZennial’, the term given for someone born between 1991-2001 who identifies with both Millennial and Generation Z culture.

Cartoon depictions of female journalism graduates who run the GenZennial website
Credit: Jade Kirk Creative

The female-run online publication GenZennial is a collaborative effort between friends and recent graduates from the Journalism BA Honours course with international reach, exploring a range of topics from music to astrology. The team is made up of Hannah Wilson, Derrian Douglas, Ashleigh Swan, Ivana Finch, Ellie Dalton and Rusdeep Heera. 

The website is separated into sections of pop culture, lifestyle and good news. The good news section was a particularly important section for the creators, which collects positive news stories from across the world to provide readers with an escape from the negativity that often appears in the daily news cycle. The team hope to expand to explore more areas as they create further content and are also working on a podcast, with interviews with well-known influencers already lined up. 

The GenZennial website also includes a ‘GenZennial of the Month’ feature, where the team celebrates people for the work they do, the message they portray or their lasting impact on those around them. The first GenZennial of the month is actress, singer and model Naya Rivera, who recently passed away. Rivera was an easy choice for the team due to her extensive work for LGBTQ+ representation, particularly through her role on hit TV show Glee. Future ‘GenZennials of the month’ include a range of activists and small business owners, two of which are women of colour, who the team hope to further support through their platform.  

Talking about the platform, GenZennial team member Hannah Wilson said: “I’ve always wanted to work on a project like this and with us spending more time at home during lockdown, this seemed like the perfect time to start. My time on the course has really helped me to understand how to run a news website, particularly our Voice of London module, and we’ve already had some brilliant support from our lecturers. 

“We wanted to focus on the GenZennial generation because it is what we identify most with and we wanted to show that the stereotype of Millennials and Generation Z being lazy is just not true. I created the logo and the website, and it’s been really gratifying to see such a positive response.”

Derrian Douglas said: “Starting a business like this with my friends has been so rewarding, and I think the idea of a female-run publication is exactly what the industry is missing. As a group of six women, we have such high hopes for our publication and look forward to employing more women as our publication gains more popularity - we’ve already received some interest in writing for the site and handling our social media! The GenZennial generation gets such a bad reputation, and part of our mission is to prove how hardworking our generation is. We’re hungry for change and we’ve already proven we’ll do anything to achieve it.”

Ashleigh Swan added: “I’m really excited to be a part of something my friends and I created during lockdown. It feels so empowering to be able to write about whatever we want and creating a website from scratch has been a rewarding challenge! It’s only going to get better from here!” 

Find out more on the GenZennial website.

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