THE UK’S NATIONAL STUDENT NEWSPAPER
VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
NO SITTING AFFAIR // HOT CHIP
INSIDE SPORT JENNY JONES PG30
CAMPUS LIFE CHESTER UNI PG13 LGBT SPECIAL BOY GEORGE PG14
HOT CHIP REVIEW Following the huge success of fourth studio album ‘One Life Stand’ and rave reviews of their recent UK tour, are nerds-turned pop stars Hot Chip officially the real deal? Full review page 28.
Around The World in 30 Raves…for 30k Is this the ‘Fest’ Job Ever?
Is Islam being demonised unfairly? Page 6
Canada thanks Brazil for rescuing students on SV Concordia Page 4
SUPPLEMENT PG18 MATHS & ACTUARIES ENTERTAINMENT GOOD SHOES PG29 INTERVIEW AMIR KHAN PG32
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14th-18th JUNE 2010 Fire up the trumpets and give the drummer a nudge. After more than four years of scouring the UK coastline in search of the perfect home, the mammoth hunt is over and the UK’s biggest student festival Beach Break Live is proud to present Pembrey Country Park, Carmarthenshire, South Wales as their brand spanking new home! After triumphing against all odds in 2009 after losing the license for their sellout festival site in Cornwall with just 6 days to go, BBL refused to be defeated and moved the entire festival to Kent. The BBL family has now moored on Welsh sands, unpacked their bags and are here to stay. Nestled behind the silky dunes of the award winning Cefn Sidan Sands beach, and flanked by 2,000 acres of stunning forestry, the breath taking new site has it all. The beach is recognized to be one of Europe’s most beautiful and boasts 8 glorious miles of pristine white sand set against the backdrop of the Gower Penisnsula. The search has finally ended and the BBL team has uncovered the most spectacular festival location on planet earth! Continued on page 7.
BEACH BREAK 2010 NEW LOCATION CONFIRMED WELCOME
View We’ve literally every kind of school you can imagine in the London Borough of Bexley. Rural, urban, large, small, primary, secondary, special needs, selective – whatever you want from a school, you’ll find it in our borough...
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Phew! What a couple of months it has been! We have features galore for you guys to get your teeth stuck into and with more student writers than ever before – we really are spoiling you this issue! Check out our interview with the head of FOSIS (The Federation of Student Islamic Societies) about how the image of Islam has changed in the UK over the last 10 years, especially given the fact that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was an Islamic Society President – gripping stuff! Music fans will no doubt happy with some great reviews and an exclusive interview with indie favourites Good Shoes. We also bring you news of two of the biggest student music festivals announcing outstanding line-ups. We have exclusive interviews with World Champion boxer Amir Khan and snowboarding superstar Jenny Jones for all you sports enthusiasts as well as all the usual BUCS updates. We also have the usual pages on gap year, with features this issue on maths and actuaries and the Sydney Mardi Gras celebrations. You would have to go a long, long way to find a newspaper morededicated to bringing UK students everything they need. Remember all this is also online at www.studenttimes.org where we also have brand new careers and music festival sections. With all the above and so much more, to get stuck and remember, if any of you guys think you could contribute to the national student newspaper then please drop us a line at email@example.com. Enjoy! firstname.lastname@example.org
and Ashleigh Elliot EDITOR – Charles Whitworth WRITER – Ben Martin INTERNATIONAL EDITOR – David Ruiz
Visit www.beachbreaklive .com for more info.
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Welcome to the new edition of Student Times!
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PEMBREY COUNTRY PARK, SOUTH WALES LINE UP TO BE ANNOUNCED SOON
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STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Win the ultimate American road trip
The competition prize includes: an exclusive 10 day North American adventure tour for 8, free return flights from London to Los Angeles courtesy of Continental Airlines, a super-stretch limo tour of Las Vegas and sunrise at the magnificent Grand Canyon” The winner and their 7 friends will depart on June 29th 2010, heading straight for Hollywood Los Angeles, where their action packed 10day tour will begin. From there, they will cruise north along California’s Pacific Coast Highway to America’s favourite city of San Francisco and the iconic Golden Gate Bridge.
Next, the group will head to the hills for six full days of camping in the heart of the North American wilderness, surrounded by the awesome scenery in some of America’s most spectacular national parks including Yosemite, Zion and the mighty Grand Canyon. The final stop of this incredible trip is in Las Vegas, for a cruise down the strip in a super-stretch for limo. To enter the competition, visit www.trekamerica.com/8mates/ . Upon entering, entrants will be sent a unique URL which can forwarded on to their friends. For everyone who enters via this unique
Around The World in 30 Raves…for 30k Is this the ‘Fest’ Job Ever? ST NIBS …AND FANCY A PAID INTERNSHIP? How many times do you get offered a paid internship? Not many! That’s why we’re offering you just that to help you get your first rung on the career ladder and get way ahead of the rest. Know your Facebook from your Twitter? Your forum from your blog? Then we want to hear from you! We’re looking for you web savvy students. We’ll offer you some invaluable experience on how to promote companies through digital marketing, and we’ll give you a nice wad of cash in return. If you like the sound of this visit facebook.com/bigyellow and become a fan to apply for this great opportunity.
Canada thanks Brazil for rescuing students on SV Concordia
URL, entrants will receive an extra entry into the competition, increasing their chances of winning the ultimate American road trip. A new Facebook application has been developed for entrants to create their own tour bus for the adventure of a lifetime! TrekAmerica specialises in small group adventure tours in North America for 18-38 year olds, running over 50 unique itineraries ranging from 3 days to nine weeks in length. For more information on TrekAmerica’s original adventures, see www.trekamerica.com or call 0845 330 6095.
Canada expressed Friday thanks to the “swift and heroic” rescue efforts by the Brazilian Navy and merchant vessel crews following the sinking of a Canadian ship several hundred kilometers off the coast of Rio de Janeiro. Prime Minister Stephen Harper said in a statement that the skill and compassion demonstrated by Brazilian rescuers is a tribute to their training, spirit and seamanship. “Their efforts are deeply appreciated by Canada,” Harper said, “We are deeply relieved that tragedy was averted and that members of the crew will soon be home safe and sound.” A Nova Scotia-based ship, the tall ship SV Concordia, which was carrying dozens of students when it sank off Brazil, but all 64 students aboard were rescued from four life-rafts by merchant vessels early Friday, officials say. The 48 students, eight teachers and eight crew had to abandon the ship and spent the night in life-rafts
equipped with blankets and some food. A Brazilian navy helicopter spotted the rafts and dropped medical supplies. The rescued people were expected to be moved to a Brazilian navy frigate and taken to Rio de Janeiro. The tall ship left Lunenburg last September carrying students in Grades 11 and 12 and firstyear university. Most are Canadian, with others coming from the United States, Mexico, Japan and other countries. The floating school had been expected in Montevideo, Uruguay, on Thursday. Built in 1992 in Poland, the Concordia meets “all of the international requirements for safety” and passed inspections by the U.S. and Canadian coast guards, the school’s website states. The Transportation Safety Board of Canada will assist their counterparts in Bermuda, where the Concordia is registered, in investigating the cause of the sinking.
If you think Rob da Bank is a criminal offence, a mosh pit is something you make compost in and Michael Eavis is that chap who presents the Antique Road Show, then perhaps stop reading now…If you are, however, a little more well informed, then you may be interested to know that applications open today for one of the most rock & roll jobs on the planet; a dream come true for any festival frequenting, gig going, sun loving, “last man standing”, “no desk job for me” type candidate. The role? Full Time International Globe Trotting Guide, Chaperone and Front Person for Trident’s Perpetual Festival Experience. From Creamfields in Buenos Aires to Bestival on the Isle of Wight, these are just a couple of the 30 global festivals the lucky candidate will visit over a 30week period as part of their full time role. Not all beer swilling and crowd surfing however, responsibilities will also include looking after weekly Perpetual Festival competition winners as part of an inspired sales promotion for Long Lasting Trident Gum which will be giving
away global festival tickets plus other festival inspired instant win prizes. As well as keeping a beady eye on the new weekly winners that join the Perpetual Festival, the candidate will also be expected to keep us poor souls back home updated on daily adventures. From tweets to blogs, photos and videos to celebrity interviews, they must bring to life their once in a lifetime musical expedition. And for this prestigious role, the right candidate can expect to receive a
cool £30,000 plus expenses. So, if you think you have what it takes to convince a panel of judges who include George Lamb, Rob da Bank (Bestival curator) and Steve Jenner founder of www. virtualfestivals.com that you are the person for the job, start the application process at www. tridentgum.co.uk today. From the applications received, 30 will be selected for interview, with the final 10 required to attend an assessment day in front of our panel of judges.
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STUDENT NEWS FROM AROUND THE UK
ST NIBS GRADUATES OFFERED CASH TO RETRAIN AS SOCIAL WORKERS Graduates in England will receive at least £15,000 to retrain as children’s social workers under a new government-funded scheme. The “Step Up to Social Work” programme has been developed in a bid to attract high-flyers into the profession. Candidates will be paid to study for a Masters degree. Councils in eight areas are taking part in the scheme. Recent high-profile cases where children have been let down have made it hard to recruit social workers. The scheme is open to graduates who have at least a 2:1 degree and experience of working with children
Revealed! Another student letting agency! Bournemouth Students have named a Letting Agency the worst in the area, according to a recent poll. St. Quintin and McConnell of Winton came last in the poll, organised by Bournemouth University Students’ Union. Using a system whereby two points were added for every tick, and one removed for every cross, St. Quintin and McConnell received a total score of negative 91, with brief comments such as “poor service” and “very bad”. In contrast, BU Lettings, the University-based letting service came out on top, with a total of 49 points. Anna Dodridge, the Students Advice and Representation Manager at SUBU, was keen to emphasise that the poll was designed to give a rough idea of student satisfaction. Dodridge said “you have to remember that they are much bigger and do more student lettings, so there will be more general opinion on them.” She added, “Though they definitely didn’t do very well.” A spokesperson from St. Quintin and McConnell agrees: “The method used for this survey makes the results somewhat defective. Logic indicates that we will have more comments, in general, as we are one of the largest agencies in Student Lettings. “What this article fails to demonstrate is that we came second best after BU Lettings within the ‘positive’ comments section. We do however take these comments very seriously and we have been keen to work with the Student Union to address any negative comments since before this survey was carried out, with a view to improving our services across the board in future.” One student, who wished to go unnamed for fear of a bad reference, was
and families. The programme has been created by the Children’s Workforce Development Council (CWDC), which receives most of its funding from the Department for Children, Schools and Families. Keith Brumfitt, the CWDC’s director of strategy, said: “This new scheme is a really positive step in ensuring that we attract the absolute best people to pursue a career in social work. “We want to remove potential barriers which may prevent skilled professionals from seeking to train as a social worker.”
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keen to voice their grievances with the company. “St. Quintin and McConnell work by pressurizing you into placing money on a house on the day you view without really giving you a chance to properly check things over. They take numerous groups of students out and let each view a house one at a time, once one group says they’ll take it, that’s it. “Once they’ve signed you up to a house they will charge anything up to £200 as a holding fee. The customer service seriously lacks. I’ve sent them letters and they’ve never replied. They get confused about who owes what money to them and they ring you up demanding money that you don’t owe.” Dodridge explained that even though St. Quintin and McConnell received a bad mark, letting services will always be pricey: “One of the cons of using a letting agent is that you will get charged for things. “Plus, they can charge what they want, there isn’t any legislation saying that certain charges are illegal, unless it goes against the terms of the contract.” Wishing to clarify, St. Quintin and McConnell say greater communication with students is needed: “Our aim will be to educate students that our systems and charges are perfectly fair in accordance with the housing market, in line with residential lettings and that students are not exploited. The £200 holding fee secures the property for the tenant, gives our landlord peace of mind and is part payment towards all costs.”
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STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Is Islam being demonised unfairly? Following Faisal Hanjra’s heartfelt reaction to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab’s status as an Islamic Society President, Charles Whitworth investigates how the image of Islam has been affected by such events. Whilst examining critically how and why the image of Islam has changed in Britain since events such as September 11th and Christmas Day, Whitworth conducted an interview with a representative of FOSIS. The response goes further to underline Hanjra’s concerns and reveals a worrying agenda that has been set out by the conservative press.
FOSIS: This Depends on the news item at hand. But for the majority of news items, the sects are blurred into one homogenous ‘draconian’ entity. Though, irrespective of whether the media made that distinction or not, the perception amongst the lay public will not be altered in the least. The ‘buzz’ or keyword remains Islam, and the shia-sunni differentiation is but a semantic.
CW: Do you believe that Muslims have been presented more negatively in the British Press since September 11 and the War in Iraq, if so – how? FOSIS: Certainly so, prior to these events the representation of Islam in the media was subjectincident specific and a lot more balanced. For example, the Afghan ‘Mujahideen’ against the USSR Invasion were projected as heroic freedom fighters, supported and hailed by the western world, Britain included. Nowadays, the terms ‘Jihad’ and ‘Mujahideen’ are always represented in a negative light. Occasional negative portrayal of Muslims and Islam was not unheard of, however. The Salman Rushdie fiasco comes to mind, for example. But since 9/11 and 7/7, media attack on Islam and Muslims has become almost daily routine.
CW: Do you feel that the British Print Press create or intensify a feeling of ‘Islamophobia’ amongst the British public, if so – how? FOSIS: There is no shadow of a doubt. Islam is almost on a daily basis highlighted and portrayed in a negative light. This media onslaught is feeding to the readership on a daily basis, and affecting change on people’s perception of Islam and Muslims. People’s worldviews and outlooks are manipulated and steered by what they read, and the constant bombardment of misinformation is creating psychological barriers between Muslims and others, as well as withdrawal among certain sections of the Muslim community. Consequences are segregation of communities, mutual mistrust and escalation of ‘Islamophobia’. The media largely clusters all the 1.2 billion Muslims around the world into a single ‘threatening’ block.
CW: Do you believe that the British Press differentiate between the two sects of Islam (ie. Shi’a and Sunni), or do you believe they have become homogenised? Basically, do you feel that the press presume one Muslim perspective?
CW: Do you feel that certain parts of the media portray Muslims or Islam in different ways? FOSIS: There is discrepancy
between different broadsheets and tabloids in the way which they reflect and represent Islam. Personally, I feel the Guardian and the Independent are more objective than other papers. The most recent example would be the row over the Archbishop of Canterbury’s comments on the integration of aspects of Sharia law into the mainstream British legal system. While papers like the Telegraph and Times were advocating victory for ‘Islamists’ in Britain, the former papers were more balanced in their telling and conveyed the realities as they were, away from personal biases and alignments. CW: Would you say that British Muslims are too quickly associated with the theme of terrorism? FOSIS: The whole Nation of Muslims, British included. Readily used terminology such as ‘Islamic Terrorism’ and ‘Violent Islamism’ obscure the image of the religion as a whole, and its followers by extension. Unfounded comments by officials that there are thousands of potential terrorists in the country, added to the regular raids and arrests on pretried Muslim ‘suspects’ as well as discriminatory stop-searches only heighten the intensity of the scrutiny. The irony is that there seems to yet be a clear definition of parameters within which an individual is rendered a suspect, extremist or terrorist. The judgment is apparently left to the security officials, which is unhelpful. It creates mistrust between the Police and the very community with which they need to engage most positively with in order to tackle the problem of violent extremism. CW: If you feel that the image of Islam has been misrepresented since the aforementioned events, how did coverage of the religion differ before 2001? FOSIS: Fundamentally, Islam wasn’t a topical issue that earned almost daily attention in the media prior to the tragic events. Also, when it did appear in the media it was usually part of a story on an incident that relates to the Islamic world, as opposed to Islam as a belief system and religion.
CW: Would you describe the British Print Press as xenophobic or culturally racist? Please explain... FOSIS: It would certainly be unjust to label the whole industry as institutionally racist and/or xenophobic. As Muslims being fair and balanced is central to our values, even if we’re not receiving that very treatment towards ourselves. There remains a good portion of objective and integral journalists within the media apparatus. Though, the voice of the bigot always overshadows the sound of reason and rationale. CW: Overall, what impact do you think September 11 and the War in Iraq has had on British Muslim identity? FOSIS: I think there can be no single conclusive answer to this particular question. The events had a number of different implications on different sections of the non-homogenous Muslim community. To illustrate, two opposite effects observed were that while for many the events created a psychology of fear and led them to withdraw and conceal their Islamic identity to avoid discrimination whereas others saw it a wakeup call and felt it time to reinforce both the Islamic and British aspects of their identity. That said, there is widespread concern that the Muslim Community has been singled out and is now pressurised to prove its British identity and affiliation. CW: Is there a message that FOSIS would like Student Times readers to be aware of with regard to this ‘Islamophobia’ that has been created? FOSIS: One point the media always seem to miss, is that Muslims are victims of terrorism as much as
everyone else. Muslims died in the WTC when it was attacked, as well as on 7/7. Furthermore, innocent Iraqi Muslims are victims of daily suicide attacks by terrorist groups in Iraq. More importantly, if terrorism implies the killing of innocent civilians, then surely the Israeli government and war machine are terrorists, as well as the US army for all the blood of innocent people they spilled in Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine, Vietnam, Hiroshima etc. The double standards in the terminology are sickening. There have been instances when only one Israeli life took all the well deserved attention of the media after being killed in a suicide attack, 1.5 million people were being starved in Gaza and deprived of all basic requirements of life due to the imposed Israeli embargo. Further, tens of thousands of innocent Palestinians were killed as a result of military raids by the Israelis on besieged Gaza. The Palestinians didn’t receive the attention the Israeli did on the news. It is such display of hypocrisy in the media that demonises Muslims and builds a barrier of mistrust between them and the media. As though the blood of Muslims is a different colour, hardly of value, or that their innocent lives taken are always reduced mere statistics for news bulletins. So, although the opinion of just one individual, it is clear to see the campaign of prejudice that has been constructed by certain areas of the media against the Muslim community. Although the atrocities demonstrated by radical Muslims cannot be ignored, should a whole community be demonised? If you have a strong opinion on this issue, why not send us your story?
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STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
BATH SPA UNIVERSITY: PGCE
Turn Your Talent To Teaching Developing teachers of the future continues to be a long standing ethos at Bath Spa University Teaching is an important and increasingly popular choice of career for graduates. It’s a career where you can inspire inquisitive minds by bringing your own knowledge and creativity to your subject. It offers job security and a structured career path along with a starting salary of at least £20k and a good pension scheme. All of these things are particularly important in the current economic climate. Bath Spa University has a long tradition of Initial Teacher Education dating back over 60 years. Created as Bath Teacher Training College in 1947, the University is now the largest provider of Initial Teacher Education in the area. Each year a diverse group of graduates are recruited to PGCE programmes in a range of subjects. These include art and design, design and technology, English, ICT, mathematics, music, modern languages, PE, RE and science. In addition there are a number of subject knowledge enhancement courses which are ideal for graduates whose degree is not fully relevant to the subject chosen to teach. They run prior to the PGCE programme and subjects include Physics, Science, Maths, ICT and D&T. Course length varies depending on the subject. You will receive generous funding while you’re on the programme, in the form of a tax-free bursary of up to £9,000, depending on the subject you teach. If this is a priority subject you may also be eligible to receive a ‘golden hello’ bonus of between £2,500 and £5,000 once you’ve completed your first year of teaching. Bath Spa have regular PGCE events for those wanting to find out more about becoming a teacher, and further information about these events, and the PGCE programmes on offer, can be found on their website.
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STUDENT NEWS FROM AROUND THE UK
Summerbreak in Newquay! The skies are grey and exams may be looming but fear not beach bums and party queens as Summer Break is back for a massive 6th year. Slap on some sunscreen, grab your bathers and get ready for a fun- packed week of sun-drenched beaches and outlandish all night parties with an eclectic line up the UKs coolest DJs, Live acts and TV icons as 9000 students flock to Newquay for some unforgettable post exam seaside shenanigans. Expect an unrivalled 4 days and nights of BBQ-ing, tent sharing, caravan hopping and none stop post exam partying and all for the super student friendly price of just £64 per person to camp and £94 per person for a caravan in the exclusive Summer Break holiday park. Take over the exclusive Summer Break private beach by day with it’s own fully- fledged adventure centre, the innuendo prone Lusty Glaze with cheap surf lessons, zip wires, cliff- hangers and more. If hair raising activities aren’t your
thing, why not chill out by the live stage and enjoy the games, giveaways, acoustic artists and DJ’s? By night, expect four nights of fancy dress at the wildest of club nights with a world class line up of top DJ’s and live acts as Summer Break is pleased to announce it’s biggest line up to date. Already confirmed is London rapper and one to watch Example, formerly signed to Mike Skinner’s ‘The Beats’ label. This boy is going from strength to strength and has recently revamped his sound, describing it as “Dysfunctional Electro-Pop.” If you like your bass lines with a bit more wobble, big bass dubstepper Caspa, drum and bass heavyweight Sub Focus and Radio 1’s Mistajam will also be on hand to ensure your blow out ends with a bang!
Also heading down to the beach will be London’s cult club night Club De Fromage. What better than dancing the night away to the finest vintage cheddar? Bring the silliness back and come dressed as anyone but yourself…. Not to be missed! And that’s not all… Trading in his school uniform for Speedos will be comedy genius and your host for the week, the BAFTA nominated Inbetweener’s very own James Buckley who will be on hand to lead you through the week’s adventures and tickle your comedy taste buds. So whether it’s raving, chilling or simply enjoying the amazing atmosphere and campsite banter, Summer Break 2010 has something for everyone. As if all that isn’t enough, Student Times can exclusively reveal that they have two tickets up for grabs! Simply answer the
Beach Break 2010 Continued from page 3 “We’ve been able to scour the UK’s coast line to find the perfect permanent home for the event,” says Ian Forshew, the event organiser. “Students asked for an event ‘As close to a beach as possible’, with ‘beautiful surroundings’, ‘hidden areas’,
‘stages on the sand’ and ‘good sound levels’. At Pembrey Country Park we can give them all that.” Growing from just 1000 students in it’s first year to 5000 in it’s second and 10000 in it’s third, 2010 will see a whopping 17,500 UK students flock to the
Welsh coast in their masses for three days of sun, sea, sand, surf and music. With it’s dazzling new site, a huge line up soon to be announced (past years have seen the likes of Dizzee Rascal, The Wombats, Friendly Fires, The Zutons, Mystery Jets, The Enemy) and a scramble for early bird
following question, e-mail it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org along with your University name and course studied and you could be raving on Newquay beach for free!
GIVEAWAY Q: By what other DJ name is Caspa sometimes known? A: Quiet Storm B: Quiet Thunder C: Quiet Caspa Send your answers to editor@studenttimes. org now to get yourself into the biggest student festival totally free!
tickets so furious it ground the ticketing system to a complete halt, the festival which grew from humble roots to being voted Best Small Festival and Best Promoter at the 2010 Virtual Festival Awards has now found the perfect home. Just a hop skip and a jump over sand dunes there will be all manner of aquatic and sand related tomfoolery from lying prostrate and doing absolutely nothing to kite boarding, land sailing and windsurfing. Think Thai style beach parties, sand castle building, BBQ’s, tentative toe paddling, Cafe Del Mar chill out action, cocktail supping and of course the obligatory British human lobster impression making! And as if that wasn’t exciting enough, Beach Break Live is proud to announce a whole load of hair- raising extras. On top of the 8 miles of white beach, and acres of forest the new site also boasts a 130m floodlit dry ski slope offering Snowboard or ski lessons and student friendly ‘cheap as chips’ board and boot hire, one of the biggest toboggan runs in Europe, the ‘Go Ape’ in the trees woodland adventure playground extravaganza, horse
riding, surfing, wind sports, Sphere Mania, coasteering and even more soon to be announced! Watch this space! Other handsome extras include some of 2009’s favourite venues, including the mighty Main Stage, the infamous party palace that is the Residential Dance Home, the Bass Busting Dance Tent, the Ridiculously Hot Tubs, the Camped Up Camp Fire and Chai Wallah’s to name a few. Of course we couldn’t forget the infamous Moustache Bar - where facial hair is not only recommended but essential! The Beach Break ethos is a fair approach to the local community and ticket holders. Whether it’s running buses from universities to reduce carbon emissions, or working with the local community, suppliers, businesses and charities, BBL works to contribute to the local surroundings and the people they share it with! Early bird tickets sold out in record time but full price tickets are now available for the student friendly price of £89 per person with affordable boutique camping options available to those who fancy ‘splashing out.’ See you on the sand and in the sun!
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Winners of the 2009 RTS Student Television Awards announced The winners of the 2009 RTS Student Television Awards have been announced. The ceremony was held last Friday at the The Barbican Centre, London and was hosted by comedian and presenter Tom Deacon and Chaired by Director of BBC North Peter Salmon. The Awards are designed to celebrate the achievements of students nationally – the Undergraduate and Postgraduate Awards were judged in four categories including Fiction, Entertainment, Factual and Animation. In the Undergraduate Fiction category, students from The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama – Louis Paxton, Stuart Ewan and team – received the award for their humorous zombie film with a twist, Choreomania. The University of Wales’ Joe Sharp and Lauren Muchan’s documentary, Letters to Angola took the prize for Factual, while Nick White & Team, from The Arts University College at Bournemouth were awarded the Animation prize for Lullaby, a computer animation
tackling the difficult and sensitive subject of child abuse. The Entertainment award went to the University of Lincoln’s Alex Holland and his team for comedy sketch show Best Friends that Love Each Over. The judges called it “an ambitious project that was hugely impressive and revealed massive potential in both the on and off screen talent”. In the Postgraduate categories, students from the National Film and Television School (NFTS) scooped a hat trick of Awards. Tom Green, Mahalia Rimmer and Purnima Phansalkar were honoured in the Fiction category for Brixton 85, about a young man’s actions which spark terror and violence in his local community. The judges described it as “Classy…a film which captured the era and took a big subject and made it its own with a very distinctive voice.” Mike O’Leary and team’s portrayal of a 10 year old boy’s journey into his own future, Not Safe for Work was victorious in the Entertainment category, while Philip Bacon, Mahalia
Rimmer and Mo Bazazi made it a fantastic three for the NFTS with Yellow Belly End which scooped the Animation prize. The judges called it a “thought-
provoking, truly original film that combined music, style and animation to create a world and mood of its own.” Jennifer Fearnley received
the award for best Postgraduate Factual for Stuck on the Edge, a film about a remarkable 100 year-old woman.
UK students discriminiated against in fight for university places Numbers of UK students that will be turned away “seriously underestimated” An economist and university vice chancellor has warned that UK students could be discriminated against in the fight for university places as the government imposes fines for overrecruitment. There is no limit to the number of students that universities can recruit from outside the European Union. However, the government has imposed a strict cap on the number of UK and other EU students that they can take on. Universities will be fined £3,700 per full-time student recruited over their set allowance. Professor David Green, Vice Chancellor of the University of Worcester, argues that this could leave up to 300,000 well qualified potential students out in the cold this year some 100,000 more than has been estimated by other university leaders. He said: We now have a situation where
a student from, say Turkey or Brazil, who is willing to pay the fee, can be accepted. However, a British student, who is also willing to pay, will be turned away. It will be illegal for us to take their money. We are a diverse university and take students from all over the world, and that will continue. However, we would not wish to see home students prevented from having the same opportunities as international.” Professor Green has called on the Government to scrap the fines that will force universities to turn away thousands of prospective students. Universities, like ourselves, that would be happy to take on additional students for no extra government funding during a period of national economic emergency, will be fined for doing so, he said. This is ridiculous when all we want to do is to give more people the opportunity to have a higher education.”
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Health and safety issues: voice care Did you know teachers/lecturers are at least eight times more likely to have voice problems than other workers? This means it is very important for education staff to consider voice care and take steps to prevent problems before they arise. ATL, the education union, takes this issue very seriously. As the education most focussed on support and CPD, we believe it is vital that all education professionals are taught how to use their voice correctly and offer the following Voice-saving techniques: Take a relaxed approach: A tight neck gives a tight larynx, which gives a tight sound that is as uncomfortable to listen to as it is to pro¬duce. So take a relaxed approach both physically and mentally. Take advantage of any staff breaks in the day, and schedule time in for rest and relaxation during the busy working week. Stand tall: This will improve breath support and give both you and the class the reassuring feeling that you are in control. Collapsed physical posture compresses the rib cage and the ability to inflate the lungs, generating tension.
ar? Qualifying this ye YOU SHOULD
ION UNION BEFORE YOU JOIN AN EDUCAT EXAMINE WHAT THEY DO FOR NQs very closely.
Breathe: Allow yourself to breathe deeply and easily before you have something important to say. Big breaths will help to generate volume and enable you to power the voice from lower down, away from the throat. Be focused on where you are sending the sound, to that it gets to the intended audience. Speak clearly and speak less: Over 60 per cent of what we say is interpreted with the help of consonants. Enunciate as clearly as you can and use word endings. Glottal stopping (over attacking on words starting with a vowel) is not a good way of commanding attention, as it brings your vocal folds forcefully together, causing painful inflammation. Clear speech and economical use of words will cut your teacher talking time and reduce strain. Early warning signs of problems: These may include breaks in the voice, unexpected changes of pitch, changes in vocal quality (eg hoarseness), sore throat, voice tires easily, regular loss of voice, and a sensation of a lump in the throat. To prevent problems avoid: • smoking, or cut down if you can • excessive consumption of alcohol, tea, coffee and fizzy drinks as they dehydrate you • medicated lozenges that kill pain; suck nonmedicated pastilles instead • a heavy or spicy meal last thing at night (can cause indigestion and acid reflux which inflames the vocal folds) • dairy products which can cause over production of mucous • talking above background noise • yelling in answer to someone when you are upset • talking in a whisper when your voice starts to go • clearing your throat unless you have to. Top tips for the end of a busy day • Voice rest – stop talking when you get home. • Steam the back of the throat to moisten and ease pain. • Gargle with cooled and boiled salty water to reduce pain and fight infection. • Hydrate by drinking lots of water (1.5 litres per day). If you have a voice problem: If a problem persists for more than 10 days, seek help from GP. Be persistent. The GP can refer you to an ear, nose and throat specialist, who will be able to direct you to a speech and language therapist as appropriate. Alternatively, con¬tact the Voice Care Network UK, who may be able to give you some support straight away.
ATL is the education union for newly qualifieds. We are the only member-led education union to offer a dedicated NQ newsletter and interactive website www.new2teaching.org.uk, discounted Masters opportunities through Edge Hill University and specialist summer seminars for when you first enter the classroom. Our NQ publications will help you create your CV, give you interview tips plus advice on how to meet the parents and manage classroom behaviour. And with our CPD initiatives, confidential legal support, 24 hour stress and crisis hotline, insurance cover, free training (including voice care) and opportunities for you to get involved in your union through the ATL Future group, you really can rely on ATL. With FREE membership for your first year of teaching and your second year half price, plus lots more discounts, you won’t find a better union for NQs.
Join ATL Today. 0845 057 7000* www.atl.org.uk/join Terms and conditions available online. *Local rates apply.
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Arabian gulf in peril The possibility of sudden environmental disasters through accidental oil spills or large scale toxic releases into the Arabian Gulf cannot be ignored, warns a recent study published in CIWEM’s Water and Environment Journal. The Arabian Gulf’s contained environment makes it a natural repository for pollutants. Now the Gulf’s marine ecosystem is under stress from the impacts of unprecedented coastal reclamation, oil exploration and tanker movement, industrial developments and desalination projects. More than one million barrels of oil are spilled into the Persian Gulf annually; up to 30 percent of sewage discharged into the sea is untreated; low levels of pollutants including pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organic phosphorous compounds have been found in marine organisms and biota; heavy metals such as mercury, copper and nickel are relatively high near the outfalls of desalination and power plants; and studies report elevated concentrations of cadmium, chromium, copper, arsenic, lead, nickel, vanadium, zinc and petroleum hydrocarbons
The Severn Barrage project is the largest single source of renewable energy available to the UK, with the estuary providing one of the world’s best opportunities to harness energy from tides. However, according to those preparing the SEA for a feasibility study, a compromise between capturing the power generation potential and minimising the environment effects must be achieved or it risks becoming a pipe-dream. A cross-government group, led by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, is undertaking a feasibility study to consider whether the Government could support a project that exploits the major energy generation potential of this tidal range, and if so, on
what terms. Converting the power of the Severn Estuary s tides would, in most cases, reduce the tidal range within the estuary and the scale of change could result in substantial loss of intertidal estuary habitats. Most of these habitats are protected under national and European law and support a range of similarly protected waterbirds. Tidal power options could also adversely affect the passage and survival within the Severn Estuary of a range of protected migratory fish species. There is also potential for other effects such as upon water quality, flood risk and land drainage, navigation, the local and regional community, land and seascape, and the historic environment.
OXFORD STUDENTS HIT OUT AT £15,000 SNOWDROP FIELD in the sediments, fish tissue and water column. As a result, the integrity of the Gulf terrestrial ecosystems faces various challenges such as loss of biodiversity of fauna and flora, soil degradation, sediment and nutrient loss, a sharp decline in plant life, invasive species and overgrazing. Persistent contaminants may also be
incorporated into the food chain, affecting human health. The study presents a systematic procedure on how to access acute and chronic impacts on marine ecosystems, introducing multi-criteria decision-making methodology useful to environmental agencies in developing a regulatory framework in the region.
While it might not seem like the most obvious of fundraising projects in a recession, one Oxford University college is pinning its hopes for the future on a field of snowdrops. A bizarre row has erupted at St Edmund Hall over the college’s decision to spend £15,000 of alumni donations on the winter-flowering plants. At a time when many of Oxford’s college bursars are predicting that government funding cuts will last a decade, St Edmund Hall is planning
to buy up to 20,000 snowdrops. College Principal Keith Gull instructed students to ask the college’s alumni for donations to the “snowdrop project” as part of a telephone fundraising campaign. The college, which dates back to the 1200s, is the alma mater of comedian Al Murray and Financial Times editor Lionel Barber. Gull says the spending is necessary to encourage more tourists to visit the college, which is known as Teddy Hall.
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Chester University Chester Student Union’s party animals enjoying themselves as only they know how, celebrating (or maybe commiserating) the very last night of Brannigans! After decades of dominating Chester’s student night every Wednesday, the time has come for something new – keep up to date at www.studentimes.org!
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“Miss, I just saw a lion in the playground!” OPPORTUNITIES FOR NQTs Traditional Chinese lion dancing was just one of the many events and activities enjoyed by pupils as part of the Essex Jiangsu Partnership educational and cultural exchange programme. We enjoy finding new ways to inspire our pupils, so we’re looking for the most talented, imaginative new teachers to join us. We like to inspire our staff too, so you’ll find we offer a variety of ways to enrich and support your career. Visit www.essexnqt-teachuk.co.uk to find out more about the experiences you can look forward to.
Experienced in Essex
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KEEPING YOU INFORMED WITH ALL THINGS LGBT.
by george Now here’s an artist who needs no introduction. We all know about his experiences with a capricious lover, we all know precisely how much he enjoys a nice cup of tea, and we all know where he’s been hanging his hat for the last couple of years. But what you might not know about the one and only Boy George is that he’s on his best form for bloody ages – as DS discovered when we met him for a frothy coffee earlier this week. By Nick Levine, Music Editor digitalspy.co.uk
“There’s a track called ‘Brand New’ which might be the next single, and I’ve also done a collaboration with Mark Ronson. It’s called ‘Tropic Of Cancer’ and it was written by Mark, Miike Snow and Carl from The Libertines.”
mazing Grace’ feels like your highest-profile single in years. How’s it all going? “Yes, I’ve done things on my own for the last few years and this is the first time in a while that I’ve actually worked with a label. But even though I’m still quite a highprofile artist, the best way for me to promote my work is through the internet and viral campaigns. I’ve had a couple of plays on Radio 1 – hallelujah! – but I can’t guarantee my records are going to get playlisted even if they’re really great records. I’ve made a number of records that I think deserved to be bigger hits but they always find a reason not to play them!”
Do chart positions and sales figures still matter to you? “It matters to the people selling my records, but it doesn’t really matter to me, though it does affect me indirectly of course. You can’t worry about that though – if record sales were the only reason for doing what I do, I’d have stopped ages ago! But the radio thing can be frustrating from an artistic point of view, because if you do something you think is really strong and it doesn’t get a
chance, it just feels unfair. I pay my taxes to the BBC so I’m entitled to some support haha!” What inspired the lyrics of ‘Amazing Grace’? “Well, for the last two years I’ve had to draw on a lot of amazing grace, so really it’s about that! I suppose the song is really about me taking responsibility for my life. I’ve always had a spiritual aspect to my life, but it’s always been slightly in the background. In the last couple of years I’ve embraced it more.” What’s prompted you to do that? “Well, when I was involved with the Hare Krishnas, I used to think I was a fake and didn’t really understand it it. Now I realise I don’t have to understand it. My spiritual ideas can be completely individual and don’t have to be part of a strict doctrine – call it my higher power if you like! I’ve been saying this a lot recently but I’ve really grown up in the last two years and the idea of saying that before would have been so retch-making! The idea of being grown-up always symbolised being boring, but now I realise it’s great and the other way is boring. It’s much better to be in charge of what
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you’re doing. I’m lucky to be doing what I love and I know that now. That’s the big shift.” Does this new-found positivity come across on your new album? “Definitely – it’s a dance album and it should be out in a couple of months. It’s all stuff I’ve done with a guy called Kinky Roland, who’s my main collaborator when I do dance music. Before I went to prison I was addicted to drugs, so I was doing work but it was never getting finished. When I came out of prison, I went through that work with Roland and we reworked some of it for this record. I haven’t named the album yet, but the tentative title is A Little Lower Than The Angels. We’ll see if that sticks!” Do you have plans for another single before the album comes out? “Possibly. There’s a track called ‘Brand New’ which might be the next single, and I’ve also done a collaboration with Mark Ronson. It’s called ‘Tropic Of Cancer’ and it was written by Mark, Miike Snow and Carl from The Libertines. I’m not usually comfortable singing on other people’s songs, but I really liked this one – it’s quite sexy and summery. It’s sort of like drunken ragga and it’s quite Culture Clubby actually – I think that’s what he was aiming for- but I haven’t heard the finished thing and I don’t know when it’s coming out yet.” There’s also a rumour that you might be doing something with Lady GaGa. Is there any truth to this?
“No, I don’t think so. She says a lot of nice things about me, which is very sweet, but nothing’s come up about doing anything. If I ever did anything with her, I’d want to do something on the piano, really stripped down, because for me that’s when she’s at her best. I went to her gig and the rest of it I’ve seen before, but it was so powerful when she did ‘Speechless’ and the crowd were singing along. It was just beautiful.” Adam Lambert’s also cited you as influence. Are you a fan? “I don’t know enough about him really. I know he said some quite mean things about Susan Boyle, which is always a bad idea as I’ve learned! If I ever meet him I’ll say, ‘Why don’t you keep that stuff to yourself!’ I watched him on American Idol though and he’s definitely got a great voice. I’ll be interested to see what he’s about.” What are your thoughts on Worried About The Boy, the drama the BBC are making about your Culture Club days? “I’m very excited. I went up to the set last week and met the actor who’s playing me. I thought he looked amazing - he’s a beautiful boy. I think it’s going to be good, but I’m sure there are going to be things in it that make me go, ‘Oh God!’” Will you find it hard to watch? “No, I’m looking forward to it because a lot of my friends from the time have worked on it. I’m not going to take it literally though because a lot of the stuff they’ve used is public domain and very often what’s in the papers isn’t anywhere near
the truth. I’ll just take it in the spirit it’s intended and I’m not going to get all precious about it. There won’t be any lawsuits flying around!” Do you feel comfortable being labelled “icon” or “legend”? “At this point in my life I’m quite comfortable with it, but I don’t wake up in the morning and go ‘Get the icon a coffee!’ Whenever anyone calls me an ‘icon’, I always say I’m an ‘eyesore’ or a ‘leg end’. But I’ve learnt as I’ve got older that it’s quite gracious to take compliments from people and not get petulant about it.”
“I suppose the song is really about me taking responsibility for my life. I’ve always had a spiritual aspect to my life, but it’s always been slightly in the background. In the last couple of years I’ve embraced it more.”
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Change your future and theirs If you feel that you could make a difference to people’s lives, as well as changing the course of your life for the better, then come to an Open day at the University of Wolverhampton’s school of education.
secondary PGCe Open evening
010 ay 2 19 M
anyone interested in becoming a teacher in a priority secondary subject is welcome to attend our upcoming Open evening on Wednesday 19 May, 5.30pm-8.00pm MX Building, City Campus, Wolverhampton. for more information or to register visit: www.wlv.ac.uk/openevening
Open days Our Open days showcase all the school of education has to offer including Undergraduate, PGCe and Masters courses. Our next Open days take place on 12 June and 21 august. for more information visit: www.wlv.ac.uk/opendays tel:01902 518412. e-mail: email@example.com
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Colour and pride... ...bring Sydney alive at the 2010 Mardi Gras
er Interested in a care s? le in Media Sa Why not get some experience while at r University and sell fo rg .o es www.studenttim mmission Excellent rates of co and expenses. Email rg firstname.lastname@example.org
he Mardi Gras spirit was still alive and well in the streets of Sydney, long after the final float passed last night, with this year’s Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade drawing a massive crowd of enthusiastic supporters who were treated to an explosion of queer colour. Balmy weather saw groups picnicking on the pavements of Darlinghurst from early afternoon yesterday and the Parade route packed to capacity by the time the dykes on bikes kicked off the 33rd outing of this uniquely Sydney event. Resplendent in almost nothing the transsexual fashion icon and muse Amanda Lepore was the perfect maidenhead for the Mardi Gras ship. Outrageous, larger-than-life and utterly individual, this year’s Chief of Parade was the first of almost 10,000 participants in this year’s march. The history of the world theme brought out gay & lesbian Sydney’s creative best, from the spectacular “Remembering Genius” lead float to incredible individual costume creations, from Queen Victoria to Frieda Kahlo. It was a Parade which saw lots of big choreographed marching groups, with mass arrays of George Michaels, Egyptians, zombies and surf lifesavers. Meanwhile a stunning “pink carpet” lined the streets thanks to a new, innovative lighting system that made the route sparkle more than ever. “Tonight saw a hugely creative parade delight a massive crowd of Sydneysiders and visitors,” said
“The Parade was at its exuberant best this year. There’s a whole new generation of enthusiastic creative parade groups.”
NMG CEO Michael Rolik, “but as always we want to let the dust settle and know that people got home safe and sound before calling it a success.” “I would like say a big thank you to all those who turned out to watch. It is enormously heartening to see our gay pride event so eagerly supported by the broader community.” “The Parade was at its exuberant best this year. There’s a whole new generation of enthusiastic creative parade groups that give us great hope for the future. If you want a great example of community participation and volunteerism in Australia, look no further than Mardi Gras.” “I spoke with many visitors from overseas and the message was clear. Mardi Gras is the best gay pride event in the world and a great reason to visit Sydney.” Last night’s Parade kicked off one of the biggest week’s in the history of the Mardi Gras Festival with Spencer Tunick’s mass nude installations on Monday, John Waters at Sydney Opera House and the uniquely picturesque Drag Races on Bondi Beach . The season ends next Saturday with the Mardi Gras Party finally ending intense speculation about which major stars will come out to serenade gay Sydney. Last year over 21,000 visitors came specifically to Sydney for Mardi Gras, according to figures from Events New South Wales, generating almost $30m for the New South Wales economy.
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London. Business. Masters. MSc in Actuarial Science MSc in Actuarial Management Cass is one of the world’s leading academic centres in the actuarial and insurance fields. Gaining an Actuarial Profession accredited Masters qualification with us can lead to exemption from many of your professional exams.
• The MSc in Actuarial Science offers exemptions in Subjects CT1 to CT8 • The MSc in Actuarial Management offers exemptions in Subjects CA1 and CA3, some of the Specialist Technical subjects as well as the Core Technical subjects CT2, 4, 5, 6 and 8 • Elective modules give students exposure to topics in wider fields, such as insurance, finance, investment and IT
• Both courses are available on either a full-time basis (over one year) or a part-time basis (over two years) • Part-time students are required to attend lectures for one day per week over 20 weeks per year, which fits in well with the study leave package offered by most actuarial employers.
Why not come and find out more? We hold information sessions all year round. Contact us on +44 (0)20 7040 8468 or visit our website to find out more.
MATHS & ACTUARIES
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“In a world of risk, opportunities can only be seized by those who are prepared. Actuaries combine a deep knowledge of financial systems, with a broad understanding of business and the world around them, allowing them to interpret and understand risk in a holistic way.”
Actuaries – The Risk Experts Imagine a career that uses maths to model the world and predict the probability and impact of future events – where it’s your job to calculate risk in order to discover the opportunity. This is the career of an actuary.
t’s a career that offers a challenging and well paid future, where your influence and decisions can affect thousands of people. Actuaries have the rare ability to undertake several roles at the same time – problem solver, business analyst, consultant and financial risk assessor. It’s a career where maths finds real life applications, but which also offers breadth of opportunity across corporate sectors and business roles. In a world of risk, opportunities can only be seized by those who are prepared. Actuaries combine a deep knowledge of financial systems, with a broad understanding of business and the world around them, allowing them to interpret and understand risk in a holistic way. Actuaries are therefore uniquely placed to ensure that companies are strategically positioned to react to economic circumstances and to plan for whatever the future may hold. When you join the actuarial profession, you join a highly respected group of individuals whose decisions affect the lives of thousands of people. The majority of actuaries work in the financial services sector, particularly in the areas of insurance and pensions. Actuaries can also be found in the corporate and public sector and many actuaries work as consultants, with close client contact from an early stage in their career. Actuaries also have the opportunity to pursue particular areas of interest such as climate change, genetics, energy supply or enterprise risk management. Working abroad is also an option since the UK actuarial qualifications
are recognized and respected overseas. The variety and choice of rewarding opportunities available mean that it’s a stable profession, with very few actuaries unemployed or feeling the need to leave the actuarial world.
Undergraduate study Becoming an actuary begins with achieving a good degree. It can be any subject, although many actuaries study actuarial science, business subjects, maths or science. You will not only need skills in maths – the minimum entrance requirement is a grade B at A-level or equivalent in maths, but you will also need to be a good communicator and it helps to have a broad range of business interests. You will also need to be able to think logically and have strong problem solving skills. As an actuary you will be dealing with real life problems rather than theoretical ones, therefore it is important that you are curious, have sound judgment and are able to think logically and creatively.
Postgraduate Study A number of UK universities offer postgraduate actuarial qualifications accredited by the Actuarial Profession. There are both full and part-time courses available and universities will normally seek applications from students with strong mathematical skills. The courses are aimed at highly motivated and intellectually able graduates who are prepared for the intensive workload.
MATHS & ACTUARIES
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
“With life expectancy rising and the “baby boomer” generation of post world war II babies retiring, the importance of pensions has become headline news. Actuaries will be at the heart of finding solutions.”
Joining the Profession Most new students enter the profession by joining a company as an actuarial trainee or risk analyst. The first step on the journey to joining the profession is therefore to choose the area you are most interested in working in and applying for suitable posts. Student actuaries take the exams at their own pace through correspondence courses run by specialist providers and supplemented by tutorials. Employers often provide support in the shape of mentoring, coaching, study leave and meeting the costs of learning materials. Subjects studied include statistical modeling, economics and financial actuarial maths. Exemptions from some of the exams may be awarded to students who have studied to an appropriate standard in a relevant degree, or have studied actuarial science at postgraduate level. Qualification typically takes three to six years.
Life Insurance The life insurance industry is not only well established – it has been around since the earliest civilisations. It’s therefore not surprising that today it has evolved into a complex business dealing with increasingly sophisticated products. Actuaries working in this area design and price products, provide expert advice on investment, planning and marketing products, as well as providing advice on wider business issues such as strategic risk measurement. Actuaries in life insurance must understand demographic data to gain a picture of the future. While they can’t make precise predictions, their job is to help prepare for likely outcomes. Since LT_108839_PUB121 Finance flyer FINAL:Layout 1
life insurance money is invested and many life insurance policies have an investment component, the actuary must have a deep understanding of the entire spectrum of investments. In line with the demand for increasingly sophisticated analysis, actuaries are applying techniques such as option pricing theory in order to value minimum benefit guarantees and sophisticated modelling of the range and distribution of possible outcomes reflecting varying investment and other conditions. Complex techniques can be most easily explained in complex language, but another key skill of the actuary is to translate technical information into terms that can be easily understood by their non-technical colleagues and clients.
General Insurance All forms of insurance which are not ‘life insurance’ are referred to as general insurance. This ranges from the well-known high street names in personal insurance who insure our homes and cars, to commercial or business insurance and the London market, where Lloyds is one of the best known names. The work of actuaries in general insurance impacts every area of the business. They are responsible for making sure their companies are solvent, competitive and innovative. Actuaries are involved in designing new insurance policies as well as setting the premiums to be charged to ensure the company is collecting sufficient funds to cover losses through claims. Since insurance extends to airports, ships and large and even famous buildings and landmarks, actuaries must quantify the risks of natural disasters. Using catastrophe modelling,
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MSc in Finance, Investment and Risk (subject to approval) Recent global economic events have resulted from a number of regulatory, political, ethical and other factors, all interacting in a complex way. The financial markets will recover and employers will once again start to recruit; the graduates of this programme will be in a strong position to secure new and exciting positions in the financial world. Why the MSc in Finance Investment and Risk? This unique programme is offered by the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Actuarial Science and provides the essential knowledge base in quantitative finance, investment analysis and portfolio management with financial risk analysis playing an important role. The recent crisis in the financial sector has highlighted the importance of understanding and managing risk as an integral part of the body of knowledge required for finance, investment and insurance industries. This flexible qualification opens up your career opportunities in investment banks, financial and management consultancies, auditing firms, risk management departments of financial institutions and government departments. The programme has an international perspective and aims to offer academic rigour combined with practical application and vocational orientation.
MSc in Finance, Investment and Risk (subject to approval) School of Mathematics, Statistics and Actuarial Science
Course content Core modules • • • • •
Corporate Finance Investment Analysis Financial Reporting and Analysis Quantitative Methods for Finance Financial Risk Management
In addition you can select from a range of optional modules which focus on specific areas of finance, investment, risk, insurance, business strategy and ethics.
Learning enhancement and links with industry As part of the programme you will benefit from talks by professional guest speakers from the investment
and banking industry. Stock market and business games and competitions are offered to enhance learning and provide practical training. For those studying the Chartered Financial Analyst® (CFA®) programme Levels I and II, we provide a range of special training sessions. These sessions are taught by professional tutors with industry experience. The programme is currently seeking accreditation from relevant professional bodies such as the Securities & Investment Institute (SII).
Entry requirements A good degree in a relevant subject, such as accounting, finance, economics, business, engineering or other sciences. Graduates in degrees without mathematical content, may be advised to attend a preparatory course in mathematics and statistics prior to the start of the programme in September.
Programme staff The course director is Loba Van der Bijl, who trained at the London School of Economics later specialising in finance before joining industry. In addition, the programme draws on specialisations within the School in areas of finance, mathematics, statistics and actuarial science. The School has an excellent research reputation (RAE 2008) and many members of staff are professionally qualified with practitioner experience.
Further information Please contact the programme director: E: email@example.com www.kent.ac.uk/ims
MATHS & ACTUARIES
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risk analysts will assess the potential hazards from storms, earthquakes, forest fires and flood. Insurance is a highly competitive business and actuaries are constantly making commercial decisions, which nevertheless must have a sound theoretical basis.
The pensions industry is responsible for £billions of funds collected from individuals throughout their working lives and provided as pensions in retirement. Pension funds represent the major source of long term capital invested in the markets. Actuaries in pensions industry must understand and quantify the future, calculating contributions, future liabilities and the investments required to bridge the two. Actuaries may work in-house in company pension schemes, for third party pensions companies, in pensions consultancies or even as advisers to the government or for the regulator, the Financial Services Authority. With life expectancy rising and the “baby boomer” generation of post world war II babies retiring, the importance of pensions has become headline news. Actuaries will be at the heart of finding solutions to ensure a comfortable life for tomorrow’s retirees - there has never been a more interesting and challenging time to be involved in the pensions industry.
to board level strategic decision making, risk will have an increased emphasis in years to come. Actuaries may be found in retail banking, investment banking and in the asset management industry, working in a range of areas from credit or market risk to specialist areas of investments. Credit risk ranges from assessing the credit worthiness of individuals and companies to the most complex areas of credit derivatives in the bond markets, where complex structured products are created, modelled and priced using sophisticated actuarial modelling techniques. In investment banking, market risk analysts ensure that the balance between risk and reward is always kept in check. Traders react swiftly to market moves and the risk managers independently monitor their trades to ensure they are able to make strong returns without taking excessive risks.
The Actuarial Profession If you want to find out more about becoming an actuary, visit the Actuarial Profession’s website at: www.actuaries.org.uk/careers You’ll find profiles of actuaries, details of actuarial employers, and companies offering work placements and graduate opportunities. You can also find out more on facebook or at www.be-an-actuary.co.uk
Recent events in banking have highlighted the need for improvements in risk management throughout the industry, opening opportunities for actuaries to apply their unique skills. From operational areas,
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Calculate your success. Study Maths at Southampton “Southampton is a leading centre for mathematics in the UK offering a wide range of degree programmes. We attract high quality students who go on to very successful careers. We are especially well known for the quality of our actuarial science degrees which offer students the ability to obtain exemptions from the Institute of Actuaries”. Prof James Vickers, Head of School. Programmes available at the School of Mathematics:
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BSc Maths with Actuarial Science* BSc Maths with Finance BSc Maths with Management Science MSc Actuarial Science* MSc Operational Research with Finance
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MATHS & ACTUARIES
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
The Future for Actuaries Despite a significant increase in numbers over the past ten years, actuaries working in the UK are busier than ever. The major traditional users of actuarial advice – life insurance companies and final salary pension schemes – are demanding more sophisticated analysis to cope with changes in the regulatory environment and pressure on their financial position resulting from low interest rates, increasing longevity and the return of volatility to financial markets.
t’s a career that offers a challenging and well paid future, where your influence and decisions can affect thousands of people. Actuaries have the rare ability to undertake several roles at the same time – problem solver, business analyst, consultant and financial risk assessor. It’s a career where maths finds real life applications, but which also offers breadth of opportunity across corporate sectors and business roles. In response to these changes, actuaries have continued to expand the range of techniques they are able to bring to bear in analysing complex longterm liabilities. In life insurance these techniques include the use of option pricing theory to value minimum benefit guarantees and sophisticated modelling of the range and distribution of possible outcomes reflecting varying investment and other conditions. Some of these techniques have been in use for many years in a limited way, but they now form part of the actuary’s regular toolkit. There has been dramatic growth in the number of actuaries working in general insurance over the past 20 years. General insurance actuaries have also developed new techniques, including the use of complex multivariate analysis to calculate premium rates based on a comprehensive range of risk factors. In addition, they have built models to evaluate the potential insured losses arising from natural catastrophes such as hurricanes and earthquakes. In pension schemes, actuaries are seeking to use these same techniques to manage the risks to scheme members and their employers. Actuaries now have an impressive array of methods at their disposal for analysing, measuring and managing financial risks. Many of these methods have been developed in the context of traditional areas of actuarial activity, but their potential application is much wider. Around the world an increasing number of actuaries are working in new areas, such as climate change, genetics, energy supply and major infrastructure projects. This trend is expected to continue. Within the financial sector, the involvement of actuaries in both retail and investment banking is likely to continue to grow.
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More generally, it is clear that the modern actuarial skill set equips actuaries to play a key role in risk management throughout the financial sector and beyond, particularly in areas where a long-term perspective is important. Internationally, actuarial professional bodies are cooperating to promote the involvement of actuaries in risk management, which is now a high profile activity in all areas of business. This will be an important initiative in the years ahead. This activity will be supported by changes to education and training, to ensure that actuaries working in this area have all the knowledge they need. Other changes are likely to be made to education methods and syllabuses to equip actuaries for the challenges they are likely to face in the future, as well as those that are around today. An increasing proportion of training is expected to take place face to face in a university environment, although self-study will remain available as an alternative for the foreseeable future. In recent years there has been increasing convergence of actuarial education systems around the world, largely as a result of the efforts of international actuarial bodies such as the International Actuarial Association and the Groupe Consultatif (which covers the EU). While some major differences remain at a detailed level, many countries now adhere to the same minimum core syllabus. This has improved the portability of actuarial qualifications and many actuaries now qualify in one country and end up working in another. UK actuarial qualifications continue to enjoy a high reputation throughout the world and the job prospects of internationally-minded UK actuaries are excellent. Until recently, attaining Fellowship of the Institute or Faculty of Actuaries has been the primary goal of most actuarial trainees. However, the Associateship qualification now covers all
the major actuarial techniques and concepts and is a self-contained qualification that may be particularly suitable for those intending to work outside mainstream actuarial areas, with the benefit of a significantly shorter time commitment. One of the key challenges facing actuaries is how to communicate the results of our work to users of our advice. Insurance company directors and pension fund trustees need adequate information and understanding to enable them to take informed decisions on key financial issues, but they themselves are in many cases not experts on actuarial matters. As the investigations we carry out become more complex, the challenge of explaining our findings in a comprehensible form becomes greater. As a result, actuaries now need to put more effort into bridging the ‘understanding gap’ referred to by Sir Derek Morris in his review of the UK Actuarial Profession. Much of our work relates to the quantification of the potential cost of uncertain future events. While a single figure answer may often be required for regulatory or reporting purposes, it is important that actuaries also provide information on the uncertainty surrounding their calculations in their advice to employers or clients. This all adds to the communication challenge and the need for actuaries to be articulate and fully in touch with the business world. There is an important and exciting role for actuaries in the future, in financial risk management and beyond. The only thing we can be truly certain of is that the demands on actuaries will become more diverse and more dynamic. To that end, the Profession has recently resolved that ‘support for members throughout their careers’ should be the cornerstone of our strategy for the future. By doing so, we can ensure that actuaries are well placed to take advantage of the opportunities that await them.
“In recent years there has been increasing convergence of actuarial education systems around the world, largely as a result of the efforts of international actuarial bodies such as the International Actuarial Association and the Groupe Consultatif (which covers the EU).”
Are you looking to
Find out about the closest thing to a sure thing in your career as an actuary Want to work for the consultancy named “Actuarial Consultancy of the Year” and “Investment Consultancy of the Year” by the UK Pensions Awards? For more info and an application form please visit:
Now recruiting for summer internship trainees for our London and Winchester offices within our Pensions, Insurance and Investment consultancies.
Summer internship opportunities with
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Logica increasing its number of graduate it job vacancies Logica, the Anglo-Dutch company, may have more graduate IT jobs in London on offer this year as they look to double the number of European graduates they employ. They are recruiting more graduates in the near future in anticipation of an upsurge in public sector outsourcing work. With the migration of some government functions to online services - tax returns and tax discs for vehicles, for example – the increase in outsourcing IT work has been substantial. Logica itself grew its outsourcing orders by 21 percent last year and Britain alone provided the company with £750 million revenue – an increase of 6 percent on the 2008. Well over
half of that revenue is driven by the UK’s public sector. As well as providing more potential London IT opportunities for graduates, there could also be further IT job vacancies all around the UK as Logica has its Head Office in Reading and bases in other major cities – such as Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff, Edinburgh and Aberdeen. Last year, across Europe, Logica provided 500 graduates with jobs in their IT services business. In 2010, they expect that figure to rise to around 1,000 graduate vacancies in the IT industry. It is forecast that around 100 of those graduate positions will be based in the
ST NIBS INTERNATIONAL JOBS LURE BRITISH GRADUATES
es una revista y pagina web para todos los estudiantes que desean estudiar en el extranjero, ofrecemos ayuda y consejos sobre cómo estudiar en el extranjero y educación internacional. Facilitamos a los estudiantes información específica del país y todo tipo de perfiles de colegios y cursos de las universidades También proporcionamos información sobre todos los aspectos de vivir y estudiar en un país extranjero. Ofrecemos información importante como: visas, salud, trabajo y derechos legales. También cubrimos noticias, cultura, viajes y prensa. Visitanos en
Student Media and Marketing T 01206 546 777 E email@example.com www.studentmediaandmarketing.com
International jobs are on the radar of today’s graduates, as the battle for work in the UK intensifies. A study conducted by studentgems.com found that 34 per cent of people who have recently finished or are close to finishing their studies are looking at jobs abroad because employment in the UK has been difficult to secure. Out of the 1,000 people questioned for the research, 21 per cent of final-year university students said they were considering undertaking a Masters degree, while two-thirds indicated they will try to secure work before looking at further studies.
According to a studentgems.com blog, one survey respondent said: “My preferred choice would be to secure a graduate role in the UK but if I can’t find what I am looking for then I will definitely be job hunting in Europe.” Recent research published by the Association of Graduate Recruiters suggested that the drop in the number of vacancies for university leavers last year was much smaller than initial estimates had indicated. Prospects for the year ahead looked okay too, with the group predicting a stable 2010 for the graduate jobs market.
SANTANDER EXPANDS UK GRADUATE SCHEME; BANK WILL TAKE ON 230 ENTRANTS THIS YEAR Santander has announced an expansion of its graduate scheme, increasing its UK intake threefold to around 230 entrants. The bank, whose UK business was formed from the takeovers of Abbey, Bradford and Bingley and Alliance & Leicester, took on fewer than 70 graduates in 2009 but has upped its search for future leaders as it anticipates the upturn. Santander is also expanding the reach of the scheme, so it now covers corporate banking as well as existing areas such as finance, branches, telephone distribution, audit and HR. Simon Lloyd, HR director, Santander said: “The
uplift in the number of graduates we are taking on demonstrates the strength of the Santander approach to banking. We see our investment in graduates as an important step on the road to becoming the best commercial bank in the UK.” Two entry routes are available to the new intake of graduates: an accelerated entry, which allows graduates to immediately enter the workforce within a specific role; or a more traditional programme that sees them experience a variety of roles across a specific business area over a three-year period. Internships and summer placements will also be launched later this year.
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Lattitude Global Volunteering: A not for profit youth development charity China has turned my life around. It was amazing and I have made lifelong friends. My Lattitude experience was certainly the most enjoyable 6 months of my life! Tom, China When you take a gap year with Lattitude you are making a difference. Your volunteering directly benefits the communities and institutions you are working with; the children you are teaching, the adults you are befriending and caring for, the parents, the hosts you are staying with, the teachers and yourself. Our volunteering placements last from 3 to 12 months for a reason. We want you to be completely integrated into the culture, life and experiences of the country you are volunteering in, to be adopted by your host family and to not want to come home. Only a longer placement can deliver this level of cultural immersion and enjoyment and spark your passion for a new country. You’ll be amazed by how you change during your placement and by how much you will come to love the country and the people. You’ll mature and develop skills you didn’t know you possessed, be able to adapt to any situation, be more resilient, independent and responsible and perhaps re-evaluate your future plans and change the direction of your life, all while you have the time of your life.
Where can you go? Instead of feeling like a tourist on the outskirts of the culture I got to truly experience Brazilian life. Every time I listen to Brazilian music, look through my photos or remember my time there I miss it, and I think that is proof of time well spent. Maeve, Brazil Wherever you choose to go you can be sure of one thing: your experience will change your life. America (North, Central, South): Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Ecuador and Mexico Africa: Ghana, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania Asia: China, India, Japan, Vietnam Australasia: Australia, Fiji, New Zealand, Vanuatu Our placements vary from developed to developing countries, from city centre to remote bush, from comfortable furnished flats to native accommodation and from working as an assistant to being the expert.
What can you do? Volunteering is the best job ever because you get a great sense of achievement and it is so rewarding. The community and the children respect you because they know you are volunteering and they so appreciate
the work you do even more. Vanuatu made my dreams all the more possible because it gave me the strength to believe in myself. Laurence, Vanuatu We offer three broad types of placement: Education, Community and Environment In our educational placements you could be teaching English, other academic subjects, sports, art, drama or music, running after school activities with nursery, primary or secondary school children. You could be working at a summer camp for able bodied children or children with disabilities or you could be leading outward bound activities such as kayaking, archery or climbing. In Community placements you could provide care, support and assistance to orphans, patients, or care home residents. You could work within a community helping with construction and maintenance, farming and animal husbandry, working with children and teaching English to adults. We have placements in Japan where you would provide medical assistance within a Red Cross hospital working alongside medical practitioners. Our environmental projects allow you to provide practical support and assistance to protect, conserve and restore the environment and range from scrub clearance and tree planting to wildlife surveys and habitat restoration for threatened native species. We have built up relationships with hosts over many years and make sure our programmes are designed to deliver maximum benefit. All our placements are rewarding, fulfiling and fun!
Why should you volunteer with Lattitude? The memories I have brought back of the people I met, the things I saw and the things I did are just overwhelming. I can’t tell you how jealous I’d be of myself if I had passed up this opportunity. Joe, Tanzania You might not realise it but simply speaking English to a non-native speaker on a regular basis will improve their education and career prospects and thus benefit their family and community. Volunteering will also benefit you, developing skills that will stand you in good stead for your career and broadening your horizons and understanding of other cultures. Lattitude Global Volunteering is a educational development charity. We want to make international volunteering accessible to all. We help young people from developing countries to volunteer as well as young people from developed countries. We offer bursaries to deserving candidates who would not otherwise be able to afford to go and we make sure our placements deliver value for the children of the communities and institutions that our volunteers work in. When you volunteer with Lattitude you can be sure of three things: 1. We will match you to a placement that really needs your skills and where you
can have the most benefit as part of a larger, ongoing programme. We do not offer ”voluntourism” placements. Your efforts are both needed and appreciated and you will be able to make a difference while you are at your placement. You need not ever worry about arriving at your placement and having nothing to do! 2. We will support you throughout the application process, during your placement and after your return. We have relationships with Embassies, High Commissions and British Councils in the countries to which we send volunteers. We also have dedicated local representatives in each country who work with hosts and volunteers to make sure both get the most benefit from the placement and to resolve any local difficulties that occur. 3. You will have a truly amazing time! The placement at Loreto has taught me more about life and myself than I ever imagined. The memories of this trip will last forever. I have had the time of my life! Fran, India
Gap Year LIFESTYLE & HEALTH
LOOKING FOR A GOOD WAY TO SPEND YOUR GAP YEAR. DON’T FRET, STUDENT TIMES IS HERE TO HELP.
ew Year ew Gap
• CONSIDERATION: What exactly do you want to get from your gap year? If you love climbing then you probably don’t want to go to somewhere flat like Holland and if you hate water then Australia probably isn’t for you! • INVESTIGATION: Once you have decided on the nature of your gap year you need to do some serious investigating. This guide will point you in the right direction but you need to take the bull by the horns and check
out the cheapest and best ways of getting around and seeing everything your chosen destination has to offer. • ORGANISATION: Don’t leave things until the last minute. Get everything booked well in advance. This will ensure you get where you need to go, when you need to go there - not to mention the money you will save. Get your route engrained into your brain so that you can get on with enjoying your experience. • DO THINGS PROPERLY: Keep in touch with your family as much as you can, you are there to have fun and see the world but your parents may worry if you go off the radar! Stay safe and respect the local customs of the country you are in – you don’t want to be stuck in a foreign jail for misbehaving as they will not be as forgiving as the authorities over here. This may also bring an abrupt end to your travels. • R EFLECTION: You will inevitably learn a lot about life from your gap year. You will see new cultures that should help you to put your own life in perspective – use these to your advantage. So, where to go? Many students choose the more glamorous destinations, which is fine but remember that these will be a lot more expensive.
Taking a Year Off’ by Val Butcher ‘Whatever your motivation or stage of life, Taking a Year Off will help you weigh up the pros and cons, look at all your options and plan how to make the most of the chance of a lifetime.’ ISBN 0-85660-552-2
• £150-£170: This will get you up to £1000 if your luggage is lost and up to £5 million in medical fees. You will not however, be covered if your flights are changed or cancelled.
‘Worldwide Volunteering’ compiled by Roger Potter ‘WorldWide Volunteering’s database of 350000 volunteering opportunities in 215 countries (including the UK) enables people to search through placements offered by over 1100 organisations and produce a tailored list to suit their own requirements.’ ISBN 1-85703-910-6
• £170-£260: For an extra £100 you can get up to £2000 if your luggage is lost and £10 million in medical fees. For the bit of extra cash you will also receive up to £5000 if your flights are cancelled.
So, it’s 2010 and that means that thousands of students nationwide are considering their gap year. With a big wide world out there and hundreds of countries to consider, all offering different things, it can be a bit of a minefield. Take some time to read the Student Times guide to your Gap Year in 2010… n a list of interests, it’s a pretty sure bet that ‘travel’ is likely to be about as close to the top as it gets for most students. A gap year is quite possibly the only chance that any of us get to go globe-trotting, but deciding where to go and how to get there is a pretty overwhelming process. Spending hours on a cramped plane looking down from 35000 feet (if you‘re lucky enough to have a window seat) doesn’t exactly tick the box marked ‘seeing the world’, even if your final destination is somewhere as awe inspiring as Australia. First of all, follow these 5 simple steps to work out exactly what kind of Gap Year is right for you. This is a whole year of your life and is probably the only chance you will have to embark on this exciting challenge before you enter the real world – so make sure you make the right choices!
your luggage, are robbed or fall ill whilst in a foreign country then your insurance policy is essential. Student Times have kindly done some research for you, you will need to tailor your policy to your particular trip but you should be paying something in the region of;
According to a recent survey, the most popular gap year destinations are: 1. Australia 2. New Zealand 3. Thailand 4. South America 5. USA 6. India 7. South Africa 8. Eastern Europe 9. Western Europe 10. Malaysia It’s not hard to notice that the more popular destinations are on the other side of the world from Britain, with most travellers wanting to get as far away from home as possible. Remember that Europe also has a great deal of cultures to offer and may not break the bank as much. Depending on your personality, a third world country may be a better choice if you want to try and make a difference with your year out. This is very important decision however because once you are there, you are there for a long time. If you decide that this may be for you there are a number of charities you can contact and you may be able to get sponsorship to fund your trip.
Insurance is an absolutely vital part of your gap year arrangements. If you lose
You will have to contact the insurance companies to get exact figures but these are the rough prices for an eighteen to twenty-five year old travelling worldwide for up to twelve months. Comparison web-sites can be very handy for this as you can state your exact requirements but it may be conducive to contact the companies direct for a lower quote. Get your insurance sorted as soon as you have decided where you are going and when, don’t leave anything to chance!
As part of our commitment to making sure your gap year is one to remember, we have kindly compiled a list of handy books you may want to read before you set off on your adventure. ‘Taking a Gap Year’ by Susan Griffith ‘The most comprehensive guide to taking a year out. This book aims to canvass the possibilities comprehensively and covers a wealth of both mainstream and obscure options.’ ISBN 1-85458-294-1 Also by this author: ‘Work your way around the world’ ISBN 1-85458-329-8 ‘The Gap Year Book’ published by Lonely Planet ‘Packed with essential advice on saving and raising money, what to pack, keeping in touch and staying safe, the inside track on when and where to go and numerous ideas about what to do..’ ISBN 1-74059-666-8 ‘Gap Travel Guide’ published by Merricks Media) ‘The ultimate guide to time out.’ ISBN 190504927-7 ‘Before You Go’ by Tom Griffiths ‘It has literally helped thousands of young first time travellers get started and off on their travels’. ISBN 1-90401201-9
‘Planning Your Gap Year’ by Nick Vandome ‘Hundreds of Opportunities for Employment, Study, Volunteer Work and Independent Travel’ ISBN 1-85703879-7 Finally, there is only so much anyone can tell you about where to go on your gap year as it is totally personal, but below are the five most popular round the world trips. Good luck and enjoy! n
Four of the most popular round the world trips (starting in the UK) according to the Mintel Gap Year Travel Report: 1. London-Nairobi (overland to Johannesburg) Sydney-Auckland (overland to Christchurch) FijiLos Angeles-Miami-London 2. London-Cape Town (overland to Johannesburg) SingaporeVietnam-Perth (overland to Sydney-Christchurch (overland to Auckland) Fiji-Cook islands-TahitiLos Angeles (overland to New York) - London 3. London- Nairobi (overland to Dar Es Salaam) Bombay-Kuala Lumpur-Brisbane-Auckland-FijiLos Angeles-London 4. London-Cairo-Kathmandu (overland to Delhi) Hanoi (overland to Singapore) AustraliaNew Zealand-Tonga-Samoa-Los Angeles-Mexico-Fort LauderdaleKingston-London
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PARIS ON A PINCH
“The Louvre, one of the world’s largest museums and the most visited museum in the world, is perhaps the central landmark of Paris. Nearly 35,000 objects from prehistory to the 19th century are exhibited making The Louvre an absolutely essential destination.”
Postcard from Paris
Paris: Cool Culture & Cuisine
When you think of Paris, I imagine you think of romantic walks on the Seine or freezing your ‘proverbials’ off going up the Eiffel Tower. I certainly did, but as I discovered, the ‘City of Love’ has so much more to offer – especially to those on a tight budget.
hether you’re looking to soak up some culture or enjoy some top quality food and drink, Paris has it all and at a price that you will find surprisingly affordable. Student Times have outlined two of the most interesting locations and tell you where to go for an affordable but buzzing night out. The Louvre, one of the world’s largest museums and the most visited museum in the world, is perhaps the central landmark of Paris. Nearly 35,000 objects from prehistory to the 19th century are exhibited making The Louvre an absolutely essential destination. With the trademark glass pyramid greeting you before you even enter the building, the scene is immediately set for a breathtaking cultural experience. As with any Parisian exhibition, the museum is free to any E.U citizen under the age of 25. Visitors can see a range of articles from Roman and Greek statues to the Venus de Milo and of course, the Mona Lisa. Set out in colour coded areas according to theme, one could spend all day admiring the wonders the museum has to offer and for a modest €5, you can tour the building with the aid of a
multimedia guide that explains every last object in detail. Situated on the River Seine and just of the Champs Elysees, The Louvre is in an ideal spot for tourists and is well sign posted around the city. The Arc De Triomphe, a monument that stands in the centre of the Place Charles de Gaulle is also known as the ‘Place de l’Étoile’. The triumphal arch honours those who fought for France, particularly during the Napoleonic Wars. The view from below is again quite breathtaking but is nothing compared to the view once you reach the top. Before you embark on your journey up the Arc, make sure you are prepared for the ascent up the narrow spiral staircase – I would recommend a few cans of Red Bull beforehand as I (a keen sportsman) was absolutely shattered after my 264 foot climb. The endurance test is well worth it. From the top of the Arc De Triomphe you can see the majority of central Paris with many of the large avenues (including the Champs Elysees) leading from the monument in star-like fashion. It was a joy to behold, even on a wet, grey and windy November afternoon. Be careful when approaching the
famous arch, however, as cars hurtle around the roundabout the monument is situated on in chaotic fashion. The Arc De Triomphe is at the western end of the Champs-Élysées, so again in an easily reachable part of the city. Once you have soaked up all the art and history Paris has to offer, no doubt you will be ready for some relaxation in the form of great food and drink. Look no further than the Latin Quarter in the city’s Saint-Michel region. Although it is Paris’ own version of the west-end, the quality of food, drink and atmosphere are far superior. With ‘happy hours’ that run from 3pm-7pm, during which you can buy an ice cold pint of Heineken or large glass of fine wine for just €3, in a party atmosphere without the loutish behaviour you are no doubt used to in Britain, you
can unwind and soak up the vibe with out demolishing your student loan. Once you have drunk enough beer or wine to work up a real hunger, you can then make your way to one of the many typically French restaurants offering three courses for just €15. The food is far better than anything you would get in the UK for half the price and the deal often includes a free glass of the house wine. Not too keen on French cuisine? The Latin Quarter also has restaurants offering Indian, Thai, Chinese, Greek, Turkish and Italian food at similar prices. If, after your day of sightseeing and evening of copious drinking and eating, you are still not ready for bed then you can always make your way to the Notre Dame Cathedral – just minutes from the Latin Quarter.
“If art, history, architecture, some of the worlds finest wine and cuisine and saving money are what you are looking for during your gap year, then Paris is definitely for you. Flights are as cheap as £20 from major British terminals to Paris Charles de Gaulle if you book in advance.”
Words by Charles Whitworth Possibly the most famous church in the world, entry is obviously free and the architecture is breathtaking to say the least. Services are held throughout the day and evening which showcase the incredible acoustics with in the building and, if appropriately religious, could provide the ultimate worship experience. All of the above really skims the surface of what is available in France’s amazing capital city but gives you a feel for the atmosphere. With loads of other museums, churches and exhibitions available, a culture-curious tourist could spend weeks exploring the city. The Eiffel Tower is the only landmark that requires payment regardless of age with a fee of €8 to go half way up or €15 to ascend the full way. It is definitely worth the money, giving you the chance to go even higher than the Arc De Triomphe and get the best possible view of an amazing city. If art, history, architecture, some of the worlds finest wine and cuisine and saving money are what you are looking for during your gap year, then Paris is definitely for you. Flights are as cheap as £20 from major British terminals to Paris Charles de Gaulle if you book in advance, so what’s stopping you!
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Hot Chip: One Life Stand Words: Charles Whitworth wo years on from ‘Made In The Dark’, ‘Hot Chip’ have again failed to disappoint with an (as promised) slightly calmer but just as anthemic fourth album. The album opener ‘Thieves In The Night’ sets the pace with a typically pulsy albeit lengthy tune that is sure to become as ‘Hot Chip’ as ‘Ready For The Floor’ or ‘Over And Over’. The album is crammed with moments to cherish, which look sure to be a real treat for any fans lucky enough to be seeing them on their now underway UK tour. ‘Hand Me Down Your Love’ and ‘Take It In’ are also tailor made for fans looking for that synth-rave vibe that Hot Chip have perfected again and again. The title track, ‘One Life Stand’ epitomises the album’s ability to fuse jumpy beats with some rather
poignant lyrics – making you want to dance around whilst swooning “I only wanna be your one life stand, Tell me, do you stand by your man?” perhaps explaining why the band continue to appeal to both the indie fan and the raver. There is the odd moment of mediocrity, with the rather dreary ‘Brothers’ cringingly musing about pissed up Xbox sessions or ‘I Feel Better’ which never really gets going but an album of this nature can surely not have you jumping round from start to finish? Goddard, Taylor and Co have again shown that whether crafted on their MacBooks or in the studio, their knack for putting out Electro-Pop classics has gone nowhere. With five members of such contrasting tastes and talents, the band defies logic by failing to clash and although they are still to produce the perfect album – very few do and there is no rush for the nerd-turned-popstars. n
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REVIEWS AND ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
Good Shoes for Indie Words: Charles Whitworth Photo: Hannah Gould Following the exciting news of Good Shoes’ latest material, Student Times can bring you an eagerly anticipated and totally exclusive interview. Charles Whitworth caught up with guitarist Steve Leach as he prepares for the band’s forthcoming UK tour.
ince Good Shoes’ 2007 debut album ‘Think Before You Speak’, indie music has taken a seriously electronic trajectory. You would, as a result, be forgiven for presuming that a band that made such an impact three years ago would reflect this in their new material. Good Shoes’ latest instalment ‘No Hope, No Future’ is in fact pure indie as the Morden quartet refuse to be dissuaded from their favourite genre – much to the delight of old school indie-rock fans alike. “I think a lot of bands have gone down this road to make their stuff a bit more accessible, it’s far easier to polish up a more ‘electroey’ tune,” says Steve. This is not to say that he dislikes the more electric route that indie has taken of late, it simply doesn’t suit the band’s raw and gritty style. “I think electro-indie is a great thing as it has opened a lot of doors and it is of course just as easy to play a load of rubbish on a guitar as it is on a keyboard.” Indeed, Steve has become somewhat of a fan of electro-indie pioneers, ‘Mystery Jets’, who make no secret of their electronic influence. The Eel Pie Islanders even persuaded international DJ Erol Alkan to produce their second album and the word on the street is that he has agreed to oversee the third album as well. “Yeah, I have to admit I am definitely a fan! They are really getting ahead now and their fan-base is rapidly growing – they’re pretty amazing.” When asked for an example of why Mystery Jets are worthy of such praise, Steve told me we should look no further than the fourth track of their second album, ‘Twenty One’. “Flakes is just an absolutely amazing song really. It’s so simple and hasn’t been over produced at all, Erol Alkan
has obviously been a great help and helped them to get to some really unexpected places.” Although Good Shoes decided against going down the electro route, Steve believes that bands have to adapt to the market to survive in a dogeat-dog industry. “We have played with loads of bands that have been great fun. Two that come to mind are Le Shark and, believe it or not, The Noisettes!” “They are such a good example of a band that have completely changed the way they go about music, they were almost a metal band originally. Now they are really flashy and rocky – sometimes in music you have to reinvent yourself or die,” he continued. Good Shoes’ success as one of the brightest indie bands of recent years has taken them to some great places. Not least of which being Malmo, Sweden where the band recorded their latest material. “Although going to Malmo was an industry decision, we needed to get away. We’re not like a lot of the more mainstream bands; we had less than £20,000 to produce the album,” “There were far too many distractions in London, so going to Sweden was a good idea and we got to work with some legendary producers.” continued Steve, who is more than
“There were far too many distractions in London, so going to Sweden was a good idea and we got to work with some legendary producers.”
happy and no longer under any illusions about the status of Good Shoes. “I know now that the music comes first, we will probably never make huge amounts of money because of the kind of band we are but the music is far more important.” Like many bands, Good Shoes have endured the small matter of personnel change but have come out the other side unscathed. Joel Cox unfortunately left the band before the new album was recorded with Will Church stepping up to the challenge. Steve was keen to state however that it is business as usual. “It’s all the same as before, Will was a fan of the band and has the same ideas as us so there will certainly be no change, not for the worse anyway!” As you guys know, we at Student Times are dedicated to getting you all the information you need as you embark on your chosen career paths, so what advice does Steve have for budding musicians? “Work hard and practice makes perfect really. Record companies and producers believe in originality and if you believe in what you’re doing then people latch on to that.” “If your heart and soul is in your music then you will probably get noticed, so that is invaluable really,” continued Steve as I concluded my interview to let him prepare for what is bound to be an arduous summer. Good Shoes are brothers Rhys and Tom Jones, Steve Leach and Will Church and are sure to have you tapping your heels to their spiky guitar pop this summer. Look out for them at ‘Truck’ as well as a range of other festivals this summer. Remember you can keep tabs on all the festivals worth knowing about in the Student Times Festival section! Student Times will also be at the Good Shoes concert in Manchester this April, so see you there and look out for our review online. n
Pure Gold Shearwater - The Golden Archipelago Words: Ben Martin
ear, dubiousness and scorn are emotions usually reserved for side projects. They are rarely taken seriously (see Josh Homme in Eagles of Death Metal) and are usually no more than a vanity project; a tool for a frustrated ego to try and work outside the constraints of their current project. So when Okkervil River members Jonathan Meiburg and Will Sheff started their Shearwater project in 2001, people were, naturally, dubious. Luckily, anything and everything that this band produces makes OR look like a poor Bright Eyes cover band (which they most certainly are not). Shearwater emote a kind of beauty which wraps both the heart and the brain in silk, and a sustained listen to any of their releases will always end in the listener feeling moved, elated, and emotionally drained. I first heard of the band around the release of 2008’s “Rook”, and was instantly captivated by Meiburg’s yearning vocal on tracks like “Leviathan, Bound”. In fact, for me, all “The Golden Archipelago” had to achieve was matching that benchmark and it would be a resounding success of an album. Fortunately, it has surpassed it. Not for such a long time have I been so captivated by the instrumentation and structure of songs. Your selective hearing will be completely out of whack, as each channel on this collection of madrigals to island life works in such perfect synchronicity; it makes you wonder why anyone else is bothering to make music. From start to finish, “The Golden Archipelago” draws the listener in with its subtle complexities. The stomping beat of “Black Eyes”, the noise experimentations of “Corridors”, the ominous sound-scaping in “Uniforms”. All embellished with Meinburg’s operatic range, reminiscent of avant-rock genius Scott Walker. “The Golden Archipelago” is not a selection of a band’s best songs; it is a single piece in its own right. More like a symphony with 11 distinct movements, each one as thrilling, heartbreaking and epic as the last. It deserves both your attention and love. Shearwater deserve your money. n “The Golden Archipelago” is out now on all major formats.
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Jenny Jones As the UK’s greatest snowboarding export, Jenny Jones has bossed proceedings on the world stage for the past four years, amassing countless podium places across both hemispheres and attracting core and mainstream media plaudits in the process.
QUICKIES Hometown: Bristol School: the riding high school Bristol College & subjects studied: Filton college media, theatre and communications University & subjects studied: haven’t been….. yet (it’s never too late) Best lifetime achievements: winning gold at the X games, getting a snowboard film part, being able to snowboard for a living, staying fit and healthy. What makes you laugh: Frankie Boyle, who’s line is it anyway, my mates stacking in the powder, random adventures on a night out.
Girl Powder Such achievements are no small feat for a UK rider, and much of Jenny’s success is down to her fierce competitiveness – not that you’d know it from her charming, fun-loving disposition. She spends much of her time travelling the world competing in the Swatch TTR circuit, as well as finding time to film for the world’s leading film production companies and represent her many sponsors at numerous media engagements. And as if all that on-snow success wasn’t enough, Jenny’s good looks and charm mean she has crossover appeal to spare, something summed up by her appearance at a respectable 58th in Loaded magazine’s 100 Hottest Women feature. Student Times’s very own Ski boy “Paul Cocciadiferro” managed to have a Q&A with Jenny when she was bouncing around the world from Colorado to London then back out to BC Canada. When did you discover your passion for snowboarding and do you remember your first lesson? My first lesson was on dry-slope for half hour, I didn’t learn a lot but I knew that I wanted to continue. I spent a week
“I just enjoyed the sport so much I wanted to go riding everyday and progress more hit bigger jumps try different tricks.” snowboarding on a college trip to France and this is when I really had more of a chance to get to grips with the sport. I found the whole experience brilliant and couldn’t wait to finish college so I could take a gap year and spent my winter snowboarding for four months in the French alps. As most of our readers are in education at the moment and discovering what they want to do with their lives, and how to do it. Was becoming a world-class snowboarder, your ambition, career choice, or just decision of the heart regardless of the consequences? I never had the ambition to be a pro snowboarder when I was younger as I had never done the
Favourite party trick done by you: drunken caterpillar Favourite party trick done by someone else: I was quite impressed when a friend of ours managed to fit 22 pennies in his foreskin.
expensive sport to start would sport and only started my first you say that the equipment used season on snow when I was 18. has to be expensive brand names I think I just enjoyed the sport or is the cheaper equipment just so much I wanted to go riding as good to start the adventure everyday and progress Just for fun, I reeled off a more, few quick fire questions on? hit bigger jumps for Amir before he try left:different If your just beginning it doesn’t tricks and from this I started matter too much on the brand to path making 1. lay Whoa is yourtowards all-time hero? name or even if its second hand. a living from something I love. However, it is important to get the IMuhammed had to take Alisome chances for right size and flexion otherwise sure as I could not study and you can make it a lot harder work snowboard fullfavourite time. I choose 2. What is your book? to for yourself than it may need to give snowboarding my best shot be. I would recommend asking the and put my university on the back The Holy Quran guys at TSA as they usually know burner however this could have not worked out and there were 3. What is the best movie you haveno seen? their stuff and give good advice. guarantee. With a some Burton boards Scarface topping £1500 do you think I believe you did a lot of that anyone really needs such gymnastics throughout 4. What computer game areyour you hooked on at the expensive kit to make them ride education moment? do you think this gave better (a beginner wouldn’t you more confidence when you benefit and a pro would be just started boarding? Fight Night Round 4 as good on a custom?) I think gymnastics has helped Who knows? I am not that with strength, special awareness 5. What is your favourite meal? technical when it comes to my and agility which all benefited my gear I just know that it does what snowboarding. Steak and chips I want it to do. However, I have had contest days where my base Were any courses that youWanderers 6. Whothere is your favourite ever Bolton has been way faster than others didn’t player?do that you felt would and this has sometimes been the have benefited your current only thing making the difference career? Mmm, not sure. Either Jay Jay Okocha, Kevin Davbetween landing a run or not and Business management, sports ies or El-Hadji Diouf therefore making a podium finish psychology, PR… I am sure there and not. So although I am not sure are others. 7. Your favourite musical act? you need to spend over a grand As snowboarding can be quite an P-Diddy
and a half I do think there are benefits to certain equipment. I highly recommend Salomon. Do you service your own board? Any tips? I tend not to sharpen my edges as I ride rails and boxes and do not fancy catching my edges. Try to put your hot wax on slowly with the iron this way the wax goes into the base and doesn’t just sit on the top. So actually hydrates the base and should last longer. You started on dry slope, how does it compare to the various snow domes popping up around the country and are the dry slopes any good for beginners? If a dry-slope is all you’ve got then just get on that and give it a go I am sure most would have fun. However the snow domes are a little closer to real snow and may help to set you up a bit better when you eventually get to the mountains. Who puts the pressure on to make you want to get bigger air and push the limits, sponsors or is it all self-driven? Me.
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OLYMPIC FINALIST KWAKYE TO ATTEND 2010 BUCS CHAMPIONSHIPS
After winning an X Games gold, is an Olympic gold the only way to top this? Not really as my discipline which is slopestyle is not in the Olympics, If my event was ever to come into the Olympics and I was still at a high level of riding I would for sure give it ago but I am pretty happy with my career so far and not too worried about the Olympics. Probably the most ask question but as powder is the Holy Grail for all boarders where have you found the best conditions and does that include any of Europe? Japan has fantastic powder it just keeps falling. I have had some great powder days in whistler, Fernie and smaller resorts in BC. In Europe I think the region of Alberg gets some great snowfall, Tignes and one of my favourites is Avoriaz. I think its sometimes luck of the draw when you get the powder you just have to be ready for when it does come. Before you do a jump or hit a kicker do you spend time weighing up the landing and how to approach it? If I haven’t been in a park before I will check through the take offs and landings before hitting anything and then I will watch a few other people dropping in to the jump. This helps to judge the correct speed by watching there set up turns and how much they pop off the lip. If so what happened when you tried to jump the river in the stance film? it was clearly either cold water or rocks? (nice to see you opted for both). Hahahhaa. There was a snow landing that we had built but I don’t think it is very obvious on the video. So it was kind of a bomb drop landing and if I had enough speed it might have been okay. However I spent time doing test runs, hiking up and around the corner and getting pull ins along the snow track we had made and salted. I think we had spent so long setting it up and it looked
“Try to remember to approach the jump with a flat base and a straight line take off.” such a good shot and fun to make that I convinced myself I had enough speed. When I clearly did not. Dickhead. You live and you learn though, hey. You once mentioned the ‘lush as grass’ floaty feeling you get from a backside 180 so what mostly drives your obsession with snowboarding, going as fast as possible or getting tricky in the park? Tricks in the park, if it was a case of speed I would be a downhill racer ha. I just enjoy learning new tricks and get a real feeling of achievement when I land a new trick whether it’s off a park kicker or a powder jump or a cliff drop. I think being able to constantly challenge yourself and raise your heart rate now and again is a good thing. How long was it before you pulled your first backside 180 and is it the best trick to start on for us mere mortals? I can’t really remember when I first tried it but it’s a lovely feeling for sure. I would say try whichever direction feels most comfortable backside or front side. Make sure you can ride switch and with a flat base before you try it off a park kicker as you need to be confident you can ride away fakie. What are the best tricks for anyone newish to boarding out there and what advice would you give for pulling them off without looking like an out of control deflating balloon! I think learning some simple grabs are the best tricks to learn first. Indy which is grabbing with your back hand in between your two feet, tail grab using your back
arm to grab the back / tail of your board. Just a few bits of advice. Try to remember to approach the jump with a flat base and a straight line take off, make sure your shoulders and hips are inline and your knees are bent with your weight centered. When you take off try to suck your knees up and stay centered, when you come to land think about bending your knees and keeping your base flat. What’s getting you excited about 2010 in your life and on the piste? I am going on a trip to Rettlack in BC Canada catboarding which sounds great fun, riding powder and building jumps. I am looking forward to competing in the rest of the dew tour, x games in aspen and competing in the first ever European X Games. Also have some other fun trips planned throughout the year and hope for soft snow and sunshine days. Hopefully going to make it back to Laax for the British snowboard champs 2010 and enjoy some parties.
BUCS is thrilled to announce that Nike Athlete and British Olympic sprinter, Jeanette Kwakye, will be making an appearance at the 2010 BUCS Championships. Kwakye, the only European to make the 100m final in Beijing 2008, will be trackside at the BUCS athletics event at the English Institute of Sport Sheffield on Saturday 13 March. Nike is once again supporting the Championships this year, Bridget Elliot spokesperson for Nike UK said: “At Nike, serving the athlete has always been at the forefront of everything we do. Be it through providing innovative, technical products or supporting development and profile-raising. “We recognise the significance of participation in sport at all levels, from grassroots through to the pinnacle of international competition, and the universities with BUCS in particular, play a fundamental part in nurturing this performance and development.” When asked if she thought multi-sport events like the BUCS Championships help athletes prepare for other events, Kwakye said: “If you’re an athlete at any level, any type of competition is preparation for the next. So I
believe something as big as the BUCS Championships, for a person who is really wanting to push themselves forward, it’s a fantastic stepping-stone.” For the third year running the BUCS Championships, 10 – 14 March, is being hosted by Sheffield and the surrounding Yorkshire region, with 6,000 elite student athletes competing across 26 sports and utilising many of the first-class sporting facilities in the area. A further example of Nike’s commitment can be seen in the Nike Selects university ambassador programme which brings together inspirational young women who are passionate about sport and dedicated to introducing others into sport. Nike also has a new campaign known as Rock Victorious that celebrates the euphoric feeling of victory that only comes as a result of hard training and the company will have representatives and the Nike Selects team at the Championships on the lookout for ‘Rock Victorious’ moments, rewarding participants in a variety of ways. The BUCS Championships is also supported by Yorkshire Forward, the Regional Development Agency for Yorkshire and the Humber.
ST Letter’s Dear Editor,
I have just finished my studies at Loughborough University and now looking for a job. I have not been too adamant as I am still not sure in what field I want to go into. The reason in why I am writing this email to you is that when looking at Job vacancies and Employers websites, I observed something and it really did bother me. I am not sure if it has been mentioned in the Lifestyle Students section in times and if it has not, I personally think it should. When going through an application process, it immediately asks if the Graduate has received a 2:1, as I am heading towards a 2:1, this was not applicable to me. So I just carried on and clicked yes. Then it hit me, what about those students who have achieved a 2:2 at a great University like LSE or UCL. 6th form and college students spend so much time and effort getting into top universities, when they do, they are simply outdone by students who have a first class honours degree at a University that is very low in the league tables. Its these students who get the job just because of gaining a first class honours degree. There is a huge difference between higher league University than a lower league University. Not only is the work more intense, you have to attend more lectures. I personally have experienced this. When I was studying at Loughborough University, I had
to go 5 times a week to University, while my friend who was studying the same course had less coursework, less modules and only went to University a few days a week. Nearly every job application I have looked at does not ask what University did you attend first, they simply ask what did you achieve first regardless of the course you studied or the Institution you attended. I think this is really important for employers to know. A 2:2 student at a top class University could be equivalent to a 1:1 student at a lower leagued University. I hope what I am saying is making sense and pray that employers acknowledge this situation and look at in more detail. Maybe a system that shows what modules you undertook, what league your university was in not only generally but specific to your field, what course you studied and then what you achieved, hopefully that would give employers a better insight about the graduate and see if they are a suitable candidate for their job advertised. If this has already been mentioned then forgive me but if it has not, I think it is very important for employers to be aware about this. Thank you for your time in reading this email. Kind Regards,
Fatimah Zahra Sacranie
STUDENT TIMES AND BUCS BRING YOU THE SPORTS NEWS FROM AROUND THE UK
STUDENT TIMES VOLUME 6 ISSUE 3
Amir Khan has become somewhat of a national hero since his heroics at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. In the six years that have followed, he has become World Champion, set up a series of local charities and is now preparing for the biggest fight of his life under the stewardship of legendary Oscar De La Hoya. Charles Whitworth took some time out with Bolton’s favourite son.
King of the Ring! Exclusive Interview With World Boxing Champion Amir Khan. Amir Khan has become somewhat of a national hero since his heroics at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. In the six years that have followed, he has become World Champion, set up a series of local charities and is now preparing for the biggest fight of his life under the stewardship of legendary Oscar De La Hoya. Charles Whitworth took some time out with Bolton’s favourite son at the Skills North West Event at the Bolton Arena. Amir Khan was born and raised in Bolton, a city that he naturally holds very dear to his heart. For that reason, as well as preparing for 23 professional fights he has put a great deal back into the local and international communities. So, what message does he have for the youth of today, particularly those looking to emulate his own achievements? “Just keep working hard towards your goals and dreams, eventually you will break through. Never give up!” Khan has done precisely that, participating in his first bout 12 years ago and never looking back. “I had my very first bout when I was 11, I’ve always dreamt of becoming a world champion and I believed one day it will happen as long as I kept working hard and stayed focused. All the hard work paid off.” Khan has been heavily involved in raising funds for the Tsunami and Kashmir disasters and become a symbol for the British Muslim community. This is the case to such an extent that he has been labelled “a standard-bearer among the Muslim community in combating terrorism” and “the single most important role model for a multinational British society”. On a local level, the 23 year-old has also opened a gym for young Bolton lads (and ladies) wishing to break through at the top level – the ‘Gloves Community Centre’. “You have to put something back into the community, it is very important. You can’t forget your roots and you have to remember that you were once a kid and know how hard it can get at times.” Khan told me, as if his
community work was almost obligatory. A rich vein of sporting excellence runs through the Khan family tree. Sajid Mahmood, the explosive Lancashire and England allrounder, is Khan’s first cousin and Haroon, his younger brother, is also a boxer. So is sporting prowess genetic or is it purely down to grit and determination? Khan believes it to be a mix but you need the right parental guidance. “You have to be dedicated and work very hard; I think the parents play a big part in it too. If they get you into some kind of sport when you are young, you get a head start and if you enjoy it you will stick to it. Eventually you will make a career out of it if you have the ability.” Khan’s all-time hero is, as with many boxers, Muhammed Ali. Prince Naseem has also had a big influence on his career, however, being from the same weight division. “Prince Naseem was fantastic to watch, I learnt a lot from him and he is a very good friend of mine as well. He comes to all the fights, he is very inspiring as he has achieved what I want to achieve,” Winning the Silver medal at the 2004 Olympics in Athens at the age of just 17 was the first high point of Khan’s then fledgling boxing career. The aftermath of which brought him to his first life changing decision, stay amateur and get that Gold medal that he so nearly got at the first time of asking, or turn professional and conquer the world? “Yes it was a very hard decision as I wanted the Gold medal. But to wait four more years was the question - as I knew I could do it. I’m very happy I turned professional as I was young and I have gained a lot of experience.” “I have become a world champion and recognised on the world stage. If I went to Beijing and then turned professional then I probably would have become world champion when I was 27 or 28 - towards the end of my career. I’m happy I made the right choice.” Khan’s first real “knockdown” came against Rashid Drilzane in December 2006 under controversial circumstances, with
the ring having more to do with his fall than any punch thrown. Many sportsmen have been known to let their emotions take control in such situations, but Khan’s now trademark professionalism shone through. “It wasn’t really a knock down as I slipped when my foot got caught on the ropes. They classed it as a knock down so I just had to get on with it and keep my mind focused on the job.” The debacle led a small contingent of analysts to question Khan’s ability, the champion has had the last laugh however, with his career going from strength to strength ever since. 2010 has already been an eventful one in the Khan camp as manager Frank Warren was deemed surplus to requirements. Khan joined Oscar De La Hoya’s ‘Golden Boy Promotions’ on January 17th, but as he explains, this was not an easy decision but was in the end a natural one. “Oscar de la Hoya is a legend; he’s one to look up to when it comes to what you can achieve. To have a guy like him guiding my career is brilliant as he knows what I expect and want from a boxer’s point of view. Frank did a fantastic job for me, but it was time for me to move on.” Time was unfortunately of the essence as I concluded my interview, as Amir was a celebrity guest at the Skills North West exhibition but there was no way I was letting him go without asking him about the big fight. Khan faces undoubtedly the toughest fight of his career when he takes on Paulie Malignally at Madison Square Garden on 15th May. “To fight at Madison Square Garden, the Mecca of boxing is unbelievable. The world will be watching me against a great boxer in Malignaggi - who has had his share of big fights. There is going to be a lot of pressure on me, as it will be my first time boxing in America on the big stage. But I can’t wait and will be ready! Amir Khan is surely an inspiration to the youth of today, proving that no matter what your background, it is possible to succeed at any level. Be sure to give Amir your full support on May 15th!
QUICKIES Just for fun, I reeled off a few quick fire questions for Amir before he left: 1. Who is your all-time hero? Muhammed Ali 2. What is your favourite book? The Holy Quran 3. What is the best movie you have seen? Scarface 4. What computer game are you hooked on at the moment? Fight Night Round 4 5. What is your favourite meal? Steak and chips 6. Who is your favourite ever Bolton Wanderers player? Mmm, not sure. Either Jay Jay Okocha, Kevin Davies or El-Hadji Diouf 7. Your favourite musical act? P-Diddy 8. What is the best City you have ever visited? Los Angeles 9. Rocky I, II, III, IV, V or Balboa? Rocky III 10. Best boxing match you have ever seen? Muhammed Ali Vs Joe Frazier
Published on May 12, 2010
Published on May 12, 2010
This issue includes, Amir Khan Interview, Boy George Interview, Good Shoes Interview, Hot Chip Review and all the UK's latest student News a...