Thanks for joining me, I’ll start with a little about myself.
Just over three years ago, I started my first ever journey up to what was to be my home for the course of my UG Degree — sunny Manchester.
In the months running up to the start of the Philosophy course, I did what any pre-undergrad student does: obsesses over the thought of having to make a whole new group of friends, the challenges of living alone, and frantically learnt how to cook a few decent meals. I was only just 18-years-old and had fears of leaving my awesome family and friends at home, but was optimistic for what opportunities the next few years would bring.
Like most new students, leaving the comfort of home and the structure of sixth form, I was petrified. So much so, that when my parents left me in that tiny prison-cell-looking accommodation, I felt so sick I had to take a very long nap. The weeks that followed were a big confusing mess of parties, meeting amazing people and burning a lot of food. The three years that followed weren’t much different. I’ve met people from all over the world, and spent late nights into early mornings participating in odd political debates more times than I care to recall. I rinsed the student Dominoes £1 pizza deal nearly every day. Midnight trips to McDonalds (almost every night). And it wouldn’t have been Manchester if I hadn’t spent half my time there in Warehouse Project, and the other half watching The Chase. Oh, and my house got burgled — only the once.
It was about the third week of my course that I realised: Philosophy would not take me anywhere career-wise. The call for Philosophers ended about a century ago. But I’d already missed the cut-off to change course and I liked the ambiguity of it, so I stuck it out.
The last year was tough, not only was it the final year of a ridiculously abstract degree, but the death of a close friend from home also threw a spanner in the works. There were some days I wanted to sack Uni off and move back home, but if nothing else, it showed me how much we can achieve even in the hardest of times. Nearly a year on, we’re all smashing life on behalf of our mate.
Anyway, three years, a 2:1 Honours degree and a whole lot of life experience later, I can confirm that yes, a chair is just a chair.
Manchester, you were great, but the days of completing assignments the day of the deadline are behind me, and I’m ready to do some real career-driven learning. Writing has always been a passion of mine, ever since I can remember — I blame my parents for making me spell “M-A-I-N-T-A-I-N” repeatedly when I was in Reception.
So now I’m a freelance journalist with a Philosophy Bachelors Degree, and I am currently reading for a Master of Arts in Multiplatform and Mobile Journalism. I’ve been writing on and off for a few years, throughout my undergraduate studies up to the present day, writing on a range of topics with a vested interest in reporting on responses to social challenges.
I briefly considered a role in politics, but writing has always been a love of mine. I am passionate about solutions journalism for a number of reasons, but the most compelling being that I believe there is something lacking in the way we conduct and consume mainstream journalism. I think reporting on responses to problems, rather than just the issues themselves, is a different and more useful way of tackling an existing story. It’s also a branch of reporting that boasts positivity in a time when all we seem to hear is bad news. It gives a voice to those who are actively trying to reshape broken or forgotten communities, lift social barriers and achieve equity for all. On this blog you will find a mix of articles and blog posts, I hope what you read inspires you to think about the current state of the world in a different way.
I currently write for Birmingham Eastside, an online newspaper for people living and working in Parkside and Millennium Point. This blog is a strange mixture of already-published articles, as well as some blog posts, essays… it’s just all of my work in one place, really. Enjoy.
Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton