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Archive for November, 2014

Livesonline – Brigita Leonaviciute

BSc (Hons) Psychology

Sunderland’s Christmas Lights Switch On

Friday, November 14th, 2014


I know it’s a bit early to talk about Christmas as there are 40 days left, but me and my friends, we went to see the Christmas lights switch-on in Sunderland last night and I would like to share this experience with you.


I want to confess, I’ve never seen so many people in Sunderland before. It feels EVERYONE living in this town came to see the concert and how the lights are switched on. Or maybe some people just came for shopping as the Bridges shopping centre had extended open hours… The first thing we did as soon as we got there – we went to Starbucks to get some Christmas special coffees. After that we just joined the crowd to watch the concert.  photo.php


It was a very different experience from the one in my country – Lithuania – because usually we have the snow and the weather is five times colder than here.  The Christmas lights switch-on usually takes place in December as well. So we didn’t have to freeze last night while waiting for a big moment, but on the other hand – coldness is part of  the experience.

The whole thing was quite quick as it took only a couple of hours. At the end of the concert Sunderland Mayor Councillor Stuart Porthouse gave a speech and STEPS star Faye Tozer joined him later to switch on the lights that were highlighted in a fireworks display.


Friday, November 14th, 2014



It has been ages since I posted a blog here and I want to apologise for that, but I was extremely busy with my final project. Do you know one of these moments when you can’t think about anything else than that particular thing?  So I was like that – everything was spinning around my final project presentation. Do you feel confused what I’m talking about?  Just continue reading and I’ll explain everything to you.


So, every third year magazine journalism student has to produce a final piece of work – a print or digital magazine, or a website – on  a subject of their choice.  You probably think: oh I have a great passion for fashion, so I can make a fashion magazine; or I love electric guitars and I can make a magazine about that; or I am the biggest football fan, so I am going to launch a new football website – easy! But everything isn’t as easy as it looks at first sight.


The final project consists of two parts – a pitch and an actual project. The pitch is a 15-minute presentation where you explain why the market is ready for this magazine/website.  All the third year journalism students were having their final project presentations last week.   It was a very stressful week for all of us, because this is the last chance to show the best skills we have in journalism.


You have no idea how many times a day I was changing my PowerPoint slides in order to make them perfect, not just visually, but also informatively. The giant Google was my best friend for the past couple of weeks and I forced my flat mates to watch me 10 times a day rehearsing the speech.  I felt very confident about my pitch as I started it pretty early and didn’t have to rush myself. However, the stress attacked me on the presentation day.  When I went to the class I was feeling hot and at the same time cold. I think this is because we don’t do many presentations in journalism (I can probably remember only one group presentation I’ve done in the first year).  Anyway, I think everything went pretty well and now I can start the production of my lifestyle, culture and travel magazine called Reality. I promise, I’m going to tell you more about this magazine next time and now you can take a sneak peek at my presentation video below.


Bridge xxx

Journalism Guide

Friday, November 14th, 2014



Hope you all are doing ok! I’ve received a message on Facebook asking about the difference between BA Journalism and magazine, sports, fashion and broadcast journalism. If you have recently visited our open days, you have been told the main differences between these subjects. However, if you haven’t had a chance to attend one of  the university’s open days yet – this blog post is just for you.


As you may notice University of Sunderland is providing various journalism spheres:  news journalism, fashion, sports, magazine and broadcast journalism. Although, all these courses have different specialisations, but there are some modules that are compulsory to all journalism students. Media law, public affairs, cultural and media studies as well as shorthand are the modules you won’t be able avoid no matter what journalism you’re doing.  Besides that, you can also combine new journalism with magazines or sports as you get to pick optional modules. One more amazing thing – master classes where you get a chance to meet people that are actually working in this industry. They always share their views and give very useful tips.


BA Journalism

BA journalism (or, as we call it, news journalism) is mostly specialised in news reporting.  If your dream is to work for the Guardian or Independent and cover daily news BA journalism is the right choice. You will be taught how to cover serious stories such as court trials to less serious stuff (the biggest hamburger in the world or a cat stuck in a tree).


Fashion Journalism

Fashion journalism is the right niche if you have a great passion for fashion and you want to learn everything about the fashion magazines industry. This course covers everything from trend reports, catwalks reviews and fashion features writing to fashion photography, styling and magazine design.  However, bear in mind that you will also have to learn how to write news and stories that are not fashion related.  But at the end of the day this is only for your own benefit – nobody can guarantee that your first job is going to be in a fashion publication – more is better than less.


Sports Journalism

Sports Journalism is a pretty obvious sphere as well. This course covers everything from writing match reports, sport related features, broadcasting sport events to the business of sport and media photography. However, as well as fashion journalism students have to do some not so fashionable modules, sports journalism students are not an exception and you will also be told how to write news and magazine features.


Magazine Journalism

If you prefer a bit more creative writing then magazine journalism is the right choice. You are going to be told not only how to write an article for a magazine, but also the main things about magazine business.  Modules include: magazine and online writing, multiplatform magazines, magazine design and production as well as general modules I’ve mentioned earlier.


Broadcast Journalism

If you are interested in becoming a radio or TV presenter then broadcast journalism is the right one. You will get told how to use radio and video equipment, write scripts for news and other programmes.  Moreover, you can broadcast your own shows, either specialising in TV, radio or online, or taking a multi-platform approach.


What if you are unsure which one ?



Murray Library – the Best Place to Study

Friday, November 14th, 2014



We all have a list of my favourites that includes beloved food, restaurants, places to go out, books and films, music and its artists and other stuff. When you come to university this list becomes a bit longer as you add another very important thing – the best place to study.

Murray library is officially my favourite place to study and probably if you ask other current students they will tell you the same, because there is no such other place like Murray library. I love spending time here, especially in a Design Suite. If I have to design a magazine this room is perfect because there are all the facilities we need – macs with a huge screen and software.


Murray library is located at the City Campus and close to town, and it’s open 24/7. I am trying to avoid spending nights in a library, but the amount of assignments we get and an aspiration to produce the best product you possibly can makes me sometimes to choose the library rather than sleep.  Once I actually slept here, as I was so tired of writing an essay that I decided to take a couple of hours’ nap on the sofa. But that was my one and only library nightlife experience so far.


One more great thing about Murray is that you can not only study here but also grab a cup of coffee with your friends at the Starbucks on the first floor opposite the entrance. When I come to study with my friends we always sit separately in order to avoid distracting each other and then have coffee breaks there.


I made a short video tour in case you are a current student that haven’t been in this library yet or maybe you are a potential student. So click  the Play button below and enjoy  a minute of Murray library experience.

Bridge xxx


Open Day!

Thursday, November 13th, 2014


Last Saturday I had a chance to attend our university’s open day and I can say- I’m looking forward to the next one! It was a pleasure to meet you guys. I hope my shared views about journalism, university itself and student life were helpful.  I enjoyed so much talking to potential students and their parents, but at the same time felt sad because I realized that this time next year, I’ll no longer be a student in this university…

Screen shot 2014-11-13 at 15.40.19

Open day has started at 9:30am and from the first minute St Peter’s Campus overflowed with people interested in studying at the University of Sunderland. From the potential students I got various questions – from what kind of modules we have to the best places to go out with friends in Sunderland and Newcastle – while their parents were more interested in stuff such as accommodation.  As I spent my first year living in the Forge student halls, I could tell all the pros and cons about it. However, I didn’t know much about other students’ accommodation which the university offers, so I promise to do a video tour around them some time in the near future.


One of the best things about attending open days is that you get to feel the place and see the university from the inside. Also, you can get more detailed information about a course you are interested in and you can actually talk to people who are involved in the course you want to do and ask things that aren’t written in the prospect book.

  • Name: Brigita Leonaviciute
  • Age: 22
  • Studying: Magazine Journalism BA (Hons)
  • Hometown: Kaunas, Lithuania
  • Ambitions: My biggest dream is to become a successful journalist. There is no better feeling than the excitement of interviewing people.

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