News & Press

IMG 0003Students attended an inspiring talk by blogger and digital media specialist Eric Stoller as part of Healthy Social Media Week at Uxbridge College.

Eric is the Student Affairs and Technology blogger for Inside Higher Ed and speaks at events, colleges and university about the use and impact of digital media, and how social media can be used in learning and engagement. He guided students on the impact of their ‘digital footprint’ on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and how to create a professional image to boost their employment potential on LinkedIn.

Healthy Social Media Week combined messages about how students can stay safe online and use social media responsibly, with how to support and improve their mental health. It also looked at the ways the two were linked and the impact social media and mobile phone use can have on their health.

Messages included education on:

* The risks of spending too much time on social media including anxiety and depression, lack of sleep, developing a negative body image, cyber-bullying and FOMO (fear of missing out)

* How to help control social media usage by using specialist features on iPhones and Android phones that monitor and limit phone use, and Apps such as Hold which generates prizes for users who reduce their phone use

* Kooth App which provides free anonymous online counselling and support for young people.

Students could also win an ‘Internet Safety badge’ by successfully completing the Safe Online Quiz.

Liam Plumridge, Course Team Leader for Employability, Progress and Review, said: “We know that young people are becoming increasingly anxious because of how they are using social media, from lack of sleep to ‘fear of missing out’ to developing a negative body image. Healthy Social Media Week is part of the college’s ongoing strategy to help students develop better habits - social media should be something students enjoy and use responsibly in balance with other activities and the college certainly wants to do everything possible to support them in this.”

Uxbridge College supports students to lead healthy lifestyles physically and mentally with a range of ongoing activities and support.

Hack viit to Uxbridge College creative artsStudents at Uxbridge College had plenty of questions to ask a local author when she was invited to talk to them about her job as a journalist.

The keen writers who are studying for a Diploma in Creative Media (Journalism and Creative Writing) – a brand new course at the college - were quizzing her on her book Tales from an Old Hack - memoir of a local reporter which was published by The Book Guild in September.

Among the topics were: deadlines - are they stressful? Is the editor all-powerful? How do you deal with people over sensitive issues, and how does it affect you? Can the job fit in with a home life? How do you write a column?

Barbara, a columnist on the Uxbridge Gazette, also talked about her collaboration with Phyllis Whitsell on the Sunday Times bestseller Finding Tipperary Mary.

Asked to read from her book, she let them choose a topic from a list of chapters. They chose Lunch with the Queen, which is proving to be the most popular with Barbara's talks so far.

She said: "Many thanks to the students and to Emma, their lecturer, for inviting me. They were a great bunch, very enthusiastic, and, thank goodness, clued up about the dangers of only taking news from social networks. I hope many of them go on to make successful careers in writing."

Emma Filtness, Media Lecturer, said: "It is important for our students to have the opportunity to meet professionals from the creative industries, to be able to ask questions and learn about the various careers open to them in future. By hearing Barbara talk about her career and read from her book, they were able to learn first-hand from a reporter and columnist with years of experience, and I'd like to thank Barbara for kindly giving her time and generously sharing her wisdom with my burgeoning writers."

* For more about the Diploma in Creative Media (Journalism and Creative Writing), please click here


Princes Trust 1 DSCN7551Prince’s Trust students from Uxbridge College put their all into making Horsenden Farm a better place during a week of volunteering.

The group, who are developing their employment, teamwork and community skills through their course, also held fundraising events at college to help fund the work, raising £213 with a raffle and competitions.

Horsenden Farm in Greenford is a working farm dating from the Iron Age to the 1930's which runs open days and apple days with events such as craft sales, archery, as well as gardening workshops, forest schools and volunteering opportunities.

Students carried out a number of tasks including:

Woodland management – tree care and conserving habitats for small creatures at the farm
Cutting and stacking small trees to create hedges
Clearing and stacking wood for campfire circles to be used by the farm’s forest schools
Cutting back hedges
Painting signs to place around the farm

Shenez Gordon, Prince’s Trust Assistant Team Leader, said: “The students did a fantastic job showing tremendous dedication and grit - and there were definitely some sore muscles at the end of it! They have a lot to be proud of, including raising more than £200 towards the project, as well as making such a success of working as a team in a new environment with a community responsibility.”

For more pictures see:


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