England stars visit Middlesex University

Tala Sweiss alongside England footballers Kelly Smith and Siobhan Chamberlain

By Tala Sweiss, BA Journalism and Communication student

What's better than putting the skills you've learnt in the classroom into practice for a real-life event?

That is exactly what I got to do yesterday morning when the FA visited Middlesex University. As designated news reporter on the day, my responsibilities revolved around the creation of a news package. The experience was definitely a challenge; however it was extremely worthwhile to be able to take my learning outside the classroom and into a live project.

The FA and Middlesex University came together to promote the women's international match against well-respected rivals, Germany. The clash will be the first time the women will play at the new Wembley stadium, and with a record 55,000 tickets having been sold it is an event highly anticipated by many.

I had the privilege of interviewing England women's international highest goal scorer Kelly Smith and goalkeeper Siohban Chamberlain. The prospect of doing so was nerve-wracking, however, I was lucky enough to be part of a reassuring TV production crew.

Being a news reporter wasn't easy, particularly when braving cold weather for three hours. I learnt that communication is vital, particularly as a journalist because you are often required to liaise with PRs and most definitely a TV crew. In order for a live project to run smoothly, it is essential that you learn to form a good rapport with your colleagues. It makes the experience much more enjoyable too.

Events like these not only allow well-known organisations to promote themselves, it also enables us students to take a hands-on approach to tasks. 

With the FA engaging with the local community, it provides an opportunity for students to fully understand all that future roles with employers entail. With job markets and employability figures regularly changing, it is essential to gain as much experience and exposure as a student as possible. You can only stand out if you allow yourself to be seen. 

Originally published on the Huffington Post website here: www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/tala-sweiss/england-women_b_6120640.html

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