With all the Media Anniversaries this year (URF 40, Badger 20, UniTV 5 years) I would like to take this opportunity to rebut some myths surrounding Student Media here at Sussex. As a member of UniTV and URF, these are concerns that are always brought up whenever I encourage people to join.
Student Media are only for Media students
This couldn’t be more further than the truth. In fact, I speak from experience (being also a non-media student), you’ll be very surprised but in fact, the majority of the people who are actively involved in the Student Media are actually from non-media studies. The majority of the execs for UniTV are from courses as varied as History to Physics to Computer Sciences. The manager of URF is not a media student, or a journalism student, she’s studying Neuroscience.
Your course doesn’t dictate your passion to join or interest to check out the work of the Student Media. Also, another perk that you get when you join as a non-media student, you get to have access in the Media School Edit and Sound Suites, or those restricted-access rooms in Falmer House. Aren’t you curious what’s behind those doors?
Student Media are not for amateurs
Again, this is simply a massive myth. Student Media is for everyone, even for complete beginners. For instance, UniTV every semester holds tutorials for its members for a variety of skills from filming to editing to presenting. You pick and choose what interests you. I love editing, but there is no way that I will ever be in front of the camera, I immediately freeze and my brain goes haywire – I forget how to function as a human let alone present.
I’ve seen members coming in as complete amateurs and by the end of the semester they get the skills and confidence, and even get to produce their own video to be featured on our Youtube page. It is a great opportunity to learn something so much fun and new.
There is also no pressure at all, you can just come and help around the crew during filming, shadow while someone’s is editing and picking up from that, pitch in ideas for upcoming project or just hang around.
Student Media are a big commitment
This will only be true if for instance you are one of the executives/producers but the projects are so short, even if you decide to commit to one it won’t take more than two weeks to be done.
But for new members, Student Media are very flexible, attendance tends to fluctuate throughout the year and people join in whenever they can and want. Even during the second semester new members are always welcomed and it’s very easy to join right in. You can always keep your involvement very light, but every little help goes a very long way so by just coming along during a filming session and helping the crew as a runner means a lot. And you also get to spent your afternoon doing something completely new and exciting.
Student Media are not for international students
I can say with confidence that this is very untrue! Most of the membership for UniTV for instance, are non-UK students. I know English language fluency may scare some but that shouldn’t and is not a barrier for editing a nice video or producing one. The fact that makes Student Media so exciting and interesting is because of their diverse membership and in turn, Student Media really utilizes that. There are a lot of projects about international stuff such as ‘recipes from around the world’ or ‘traditional dresses from around the world’. These ideas were all pitched in by international students.
You can’t join in half-way through the semester
Student Media always have their doors open to anyone to come in at anytime for as long as they want. Even now, you can join, it’s never too late and there are still so many fun upcoming projects to get on board. Contact the Media that interests you and attend at least one tester meeting of theirs to see if you like it.
Check out Sussex’s Student Media here:
The Badger – newspaper
Cypriot Anastasia Tsolaki is a second year Law LLB studying on campus at the University of Sussex.