The Falmouth women fighting for industry equality
08 March 2021
Five Falmouth students have won a bid to be a part of the BBC’s 50:50 Equality Project. 50:50 is committed to inspiring and supporting the BBC and organisations around the globe to consistently create journalism and media content that fairly represents our world.
Maxine Denton, Hattie Young, Star McFarlane, Nadia Leigh-Hewitson and Aleksha McLoughlin teamed up to create a pitch that was lauded by the BBC for its “professionalism and creative thinking.”
The team successfully pitched to create a five-part mini-series that promotes and feeds into the BBC’s Equality Project, by profiling five individuals who may have otherwise been overlooked in the newsgathering process because of disability, race or gender variance.
As the team explains, “the first four episodes will profile individuals who represent areas of diversity that the 50:50 Project champions: gender equality, equality for those with disabilities, equality for all ethnicities. The fifth episode will demonstrate how the 50:50 Project works in practice, by following a BBC reporter as they incorporate equal representation into their newsgathering.”
Reporter and art director Nadia spoke to us about the team’s progress. “So far we have filmed one of the episodes; the deadline is the end of March. Once recorded, the episodes will be published online on the BBC 50:50 website and will also be used across social media. Additionally, the series will be aired at a little festival the project is holding to promote diversity, which will occur in April.”
The students are extremely excited by the impact their work could have on the sector. As Nadia explains, “by producing intimate profiles, the series will illuminate the real lives of diverse groups in the UK and celebrate the work of 50:50 and its partners to give these groups fair representation.”
Kevin Bishop, lecturer in BA(Hons) Journalism, is extremely proud of his students. “The creativity and teamwork these students have shown has been outstanding. They have coordinated the project through Teams from their remote locations and worked tirelessly to get the final pitch up to industry standard. My phone didn’t stop pinging with every update for weeks!”
With more episodes and a festival screening in the offing, Kevin’s phone may be buzzing for weeks to come.