Citizen students aim to make a difference

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Student Mia Cooper

From raising awareness of skin cancer in ethnic minority groups to the need to recycle mobile phones, students are aiming to make a difference by highlighting health, crime and environmental issues.

During the next few weeks, Media, Music and Performance students will research and bring attention to a range of issues as part of their Experiential Project in Media module, while adopting the University strategy Citizen Student approach.

They will work on real-world briefs – looking into and producing both digital and printed materials to place the spotlight on the pressing subjects.

Set by D&AD (Design and Art Direction), a global educational organisation promoting excellence in design and advertising, other subjects include knife crime which UK Government figures show to be on the rise.

They will also look at ways to encourage people to recycle and re-use old mobile phones, with increasing options now available, and with May being Skin Cancer Awareness Month, they will raise awareness of skin cancer in ethnic minority groups. Although minority groups are at a lower risk of developing skin cancer, when it occurs, they are often diagnosed at a later stage and, as a result, have a worse prognosis.

In the true spirit of the Citizen Student culture, the Experiential Project module encourages students to take control of the briefs, actively applying the skills and capacities they have developed – and to discover new abilities.

For the module, the students will be based at the COVID-secure Warrington site from Monday, April 19 for five weeks.

The module tutors, Dr Chris Hart and Dr Kate Sillitoe, Senior Lecturers in Advertising, said it was important to give students the opportunity to work on a ‘premium, purposeful, personalised’ experience of tackling real issues and problems.

Dr Hart said: “Modules such as Experiential Project in Media alongside vocationally oriented academic programmes such as Advertising, Photography, Radio and Media Studies provide concrete experiences for students to develop resilience and lifelong learning behaviours.

“And by working on social issues, with real-world briefs, producing messages that talk to their generation, students will see the impact their learning and application of their skills can have on the wider world.”

Digital Photography and Media Studies student Mia Cooper added: “The Experiential Project in Media module is beneficial in enabling students to work on the sorts of tasks we might look at as media professionals in the workplace, with specific requirements and time-frames, providing invaluable experience for our next steps in employment.

“With support from lecturers, the module requires students to not only create but encourages them to think about the task at hand and work with others to take responsibility to deliver high-quality work.

“I’m looking forward to being challenged creatively, not to just rely on what I know but to learn and develop over the duration of the course, and help raise awareness of important issues.”