So yesterday I returned from my fairly epic teaching debut. Tasked with hosting two classes for the Voices of the World Journalism Workshops, I survived part one.
The theme I chose was Newsworthiness: what makes the news news, what’s the difference between news and information, how does the target audience affect the news priorities etc.
I think I even impressed myself. We arrived at the Velammal College of Engineering and Technology, and (perhaps thankfully) were met by a small class of five enthusiastic boys aged 18-19.
The lads, two called Vignesh, one godlike-named Siva Raman and his twin Vigneshwaran and the smiley Vinodh, were all amazing students. Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, they understood (almost) every word, and there were some lengthy words used.
Despite the fact they’re all studying for a Bachelors in Engineering, I’m impressed they've all taken on this extra-curriculum Journalism course. Both yesterday and today, they all come in during their holidays. I wonder how many students back in the UK would do this on their days off. They even requested extra classes too, got to love these guys.
They grasped the tasks with ease and simplicity and enjoyed the interactive nature of the session. I’m sure they had fun, which always encouraged me to learn more if I could enjoy doing it.
I wish I had more time with them actually, inside and outside the classroom. The thought of empowering the next generation is an incredibly moving one. “Ambition is critical” wrote the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas, and many things and people in ones life can inspire people to achieve great success. I’m not sure my 90 minutes of discussing journalism was really close enough.