London360: Series Four
Born in Nigeria to parents of a Russian/Ukrainian and Nigerian descent, this usually is a ‘shock factor’ for those who meet her for the first time, as they do not expect to hear how diverse her heritage is. Nor can they believe how she can effortlessly speak Russian as if it were her first language.
Hailing from South London Valentina is a true Londoner at heart, she has always been proud to represent the community she was raised in.
Valentina has always believed in the significance of applying yourself in further education and believes it is a great stepping-stone to kick-starting a professional career. By attending a London University in 2007, she graduated with a 2.1 degree in BA Marketing and Advertising Communications.
She went on to apply for further graduate schemes and internships working as an account executive and marketing assistant, at various advertising agencies and corporate organisations such as Marks and Spencer, Rainey Kelly, Direct Gov and iSpy Marketing. After a year has since graduating and interning she needed a change of direction, she instinctively knew that a career within Broadcast Journalism/Media was part of her next chapter.
At aged nine she was quoted saying “by the time she was an adult she would be the next ‘Oprah Winfrey’”- maybe a tad extreme and humorous at the time, but she has always been a fighter and immensely ambitious.
Valentina is a natural ‘chatterholic’ , a bubbly, charismatic, humorous and confident individual. When she meets new people for the first time they can’t help but gravitate towards her and enjoy being around her company.
At present, Valentina is aspiring to somehow find her place within the wonderful but competitive world of Media. Working for the Media Trust at London360 was a massive breakthrough in her career so far and one step further into her desired profession.
Valentina hopes to gain all the essential skills required to become the next budding Journalist. She knows that this is a massive opportunity to showcase her talent, network with industry professionals and to deliver her potential in order to take her to the next level. Valentina thoroughly enjoys listening to music and is often heard saying, “music is the autobiography to my life, and I crave, eat, breathe, sleep music”.
You may often find Valentina mingling at various music/media events and is without fail at every concert or festival known to man. Music is her passion.
Valentina loves to engage in any activity that challenges her mind she currently has a place for the London Marathon in 2013 running for the charity Shelter. She has started training and cannot wait to hold her medal!
So what does the future hold for Valentina?
You will just have to watch this space.
Follow her on Twitter at @Valenpresents
‘I have always wanted to make a contribution to my community’ says the young Londoner, ‘in school and cadets I had always been able to do this – through one of the many channels that they provide for you to get involved – but in the real world, without the direction from above that I had always been used to, I felt lost.’ This is what inspired Eliot to apply to the media trust. ‘Journalism allows you to discover, connect with and represent people who otherwise might remain voiceless in life.’
Academically, Eliot has always been a strong all rounder – having successfully studied politics, history, biology and chemistry at A-Level. However, his real passion is for politics and (as well as learning from his investigations as a journalist) he is hoping to further his knowledge of the subject by reading it at degree level next year.
His personal interests include listening intently to London’s urban music scene, watching his football team ‘the Gunners’ (Arsenal) and of course every 18 year olds’ past time of hanging out with friends and exploring all that London has to offer to someone with a teenager’s time and energy.
As the youngest member of the London360 team, Eliot has shown a commitment and passion to succeed that is quite contrary to the images of young people broadcast in today’s society. He firmly believes that London’s youth need to be supported not scorned, understood not underestimated and (most crucially) venerated not denigrated.
Follow him on Twitter @EliotGoward
At the tender age of 18, Kiran had already found herself in the shoes of an editor when she was asked to take on the role for youth publication, Live magazine. The editorial position allowed the young journalist to develop her skills and awareness of the media industry. She successfully managed to balance this huge role with the first year of her degree.
Since then, Kiran has also managed to bag an ‘online editor’ title as she took on the role for entertainment website, Desi-Box.com. This again enabled her to gain a greater insight into the depth of certain tasks required by the industry as well as provide her with wider knowledge of web specific skills.
Our new reporter has also interned at a number of highly reputable publications and publishing companies including the Metro, the National Magazine Company and IPC Media. The self-proclaimed media lover has also written for a number of newspapers including the Independent, the Eastern Eye and was also recently featured as the guest writer in Asian City newspaper. Her achievements, hard work and determination have not gone unnoticed as Kiran has been highlighted by a number of local media publications such as the Newham Recorder and the Newham Mag. The 21-year-old is clearly adaptable and this is something she believes every journalist should be, particularly today in our ever-evolving society.
Following her media role with the Olympic Broadcasting Services earlier this year, Kiran realised that a slight change of direction was required as her interests began to develop. While she is passionate about the written word, the young journalist is now hoping to work her way up within the broadcast industry until she is at the very top of her game, she won’t stop for anything less.
Soon after her Olympic stint, Kiran showed the world, literally, how much of a true Londoner she is when she acted as a London Ambassador during the Paralympic Games. This was even picked up by BBC World News as she appeared in a live interview to discuss the experience earlier this year.
If her head’s not hidden behind a newspaper or her laptop, you’ll find Kiran spends most of her spare time either at networking events, in the gym or with her loved ones.
So what exactly does this ambitious young woman with a passion for news and current affairs expect to get out of the London360 Reporting experience? “I hope to use this opportunity to fulfil the exact aims of London360: providing a voice to London’s hidden communities.” She adds: “I am most certainly a Londoner and this is the perfect opportunity to share my knowledge and passion for my city as well as the news and current affairs that audiences don’t tend to see on traditional news programmes.”
Describe Kiran in a quote? One she lives by includes ‘failure is never an option’. The words say it all.
He grew up in Broadstairs, Kent before moving to London to study Film Studies at Queen Mary University. After getting involved in student media and politics, winning an award for coverage of the tuition fees protests, he went on to study a Journalism MA at City University.
Since and during that, he has interned and worked at a number of organisations including the Press Association, Sky World News, PoliticsHome, Hardcash Productions and the Centre for Investigative Journalism. This enabled him to work on investigative projects such as Dispatches undercover exposure of the failings of the Atos disability assessments. He is also an opinionated writer/blogger and has contributed to websites LabourList, Liberal Conspiracy, MouthLondon and MoveYourMoneyUK and articles for print publications like Arab News, NUS Spotlight and the London Student. He also has a regular blog on the Huffington Post.
Alex’s heroes are journalists such as John Pilger, Nick Davies, James Cameron, Greg Palast, Robert Fisk and Paul Mason; campaigners like Pete Seeger, Sylvia Pankhurst, Meena Keshwar Kamal, Peter Tatchell, Noam Chomsky, Doreen Lawrence. This has fuelled his interest in politics, human rights, feminism, anti-racism, economics and inequality – he is a member of Amnesty International, Fawcett Society, Peace Pledge Union, CND, Liberty, Republic and Campaign Against the Arms Trade. All of this comes together in his desire to work as an independent video journalist and eventually cover stories of conflict and exploitation around the world – as well as maybe writing an opinionated column or two for the New Statesman or New Internationalist!
Alex is also a semi-professional musician, who plays traditional music, country, blues, mento and calypso in numerous venues around London.
For this angsty young upstart, working for London 360 is a chance to lend a voice to some of the most underexposed parts of London – a city where the most privileged and powerful in the UK sit side by side with the poorest and most disenfranchised. It is a city he loves and an opportunity to get to the heart and dig deep into its culture, societies and heritage is one he won’t waste.
With a Tibetan Chinese father and a Scottish mother, Nyima grew up in Cheltenham before leaving home at 18 to embark upon a round the world trip. At 19 she took up her place at the University of Nottingham, to study Management with Chinese Studies, but within a year she was off exploring the far corners of the world again whilst studying at the University of Nottingham’s China campus. Nyima returned to Nottingham to complete her final year of university before discovering that she had been successfully selected as a Chinese Government Scholarship Student to study Mandarin at Fudan University in Shanghai. She gladly accepted and spent an eye-opening year in the city soaking up the energy of the country and learning more about her cultural heritage. This year Nyima finally ended her tempestuous relationship with education by completing her postgraduate course at the London College of Fashion.
Although she may have lost her way along the road, Nyima’s passion has always been in broadcasting, first interviewing for a position at the BBC’s Kid’s TV project whilst still in primary school.
Nyima has a keen interest in writing and has recently been published in the Independent Blogs and a local newspaper as well as scripting viral advertising videos for a Chinese media company. This summer Nyima has been volunteering at her local hospital radio station and was an actor in the Olympic Opening Ceremony; an experience that has made her even more proud to be British.
Nyima is extremely interested in foreign affairs, politics, multiculturalism and is a champion of the British Chinese community. She is determined to use her position as a London360 reporter to uncover interesting community stories that remain untold in the mainstream media. Nyima is excited to use her platform at Media Trust to explore these issues further and deliver them to a wider audience.
Follow her @nyima_p