Fun start for freshers at JMU Journalism

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Annie Williams snaps the winning team outside the Cavern Club in Mathew Street during the treasure hunt. Pic © Annie Williams/Twitter

Annie Williams snaps one of the winning teams outside the Cavern Club in Mathew Street during the treasure hunt. Pic © Annie Williams/Twitter

It’s been an action-packed first few days for the new intake of journalism students at LJMU this week, involving quizzes, war photography and even a Twitter treasure hunt.

Induction is always a time of excitement and fresh ideas, and this year was no exception. The busy schedule kicked off for the newly-arrived first years with a video address from university chancellor Sir Brian Leveson in the Neoclassical splendour of St George’s Hall.

Then it was off for the official welcome from the journalism team, followed by the ever-popular media quiz and the chance to see the Oscar-winning film Spotlight, which highlighted the exposure by reporters at the Boston Globe of child abuse within the Catholic church.

Treasure hunts – where students are asked to travel round the city solving clues – are a staple of induction weeks, but this year the challenge for the budding journalists was to use Twitter to present their answers.

At each stage, the teams had to tweet in a photo to prove they’d reached the objective, and the hotly-fought battle ended in a tie between two of the groups, with the third coming in only minutes behind.

Rose McMillan of group 2 takes a picture of the Tate Liverpool. Pic © Rose McMillan/Twitter

Rose McMillan of group 2 takes a picture of the Tate Liverpool. Pic © Rose McMillan/Twitter

The day ended on a more sombre note, with a viewing of the exhibition Infidel by the late Liverpool-born photojournalist Tim Hetherington at the John Lennon Art and Design building. Students were impressed both by Tim’s eye for detail and the technique necessary to produce such stunning images from within a war zone.

Absent-minded members of the audience for Friday’s closing event of induction week – a panel of alumni guests – would be forgiven for thinking that Question Time presenter David Dimbleby had made a surprise visit to the city. But no, the session was actually hosted by lecturer Richard Rudin, who handled proceedings in an equally deft manner.

As usual, the graduates offered up a wealth of information and advice, peppered with anecdotes, and then it was all over for another year, with new friends made, new bars recommended and new alarm clocks set for 9am.

Programme leader Jackie Newton said: “It’s always great to see the new intake of eager freshers at the start of the new year. We look forward to getting to know them over the coming weeks, and developing their skills as journalists.

“Welcome to the Class of 2019 – we know you’re going to enjoy your time with us!”