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Student Showcase 2020
  • MA Magazine Journalism
  • Cardiff University
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This MA Magazine Journalism duo, Priyankaa Joshi from Bristol and Andrea Gaini from Florence, Italy, are the co-creators of Thrifty Eats magazine. The magazine with the goal to help people eat and cook in a planet-friendly way without breaking the bank.

What’s your specialism and why do you enjoy it?

Andrea: I specialise in Magazine Journalism, in particular Food and Fitness. I love everything about food, from cooking it to eating it, especially as since leaving Italy to live in Cardiff it allows me to feel connected to my family and my Italian traditions. Thus, when the opportunity came to specialise in Food Journalism I jumped straight in with Thrifty Eats. I’m also very interested in Fitness Journalism, something that I have become passionate about since last year when I ran the Cardiff Half Marathon.

Priyankaa: My specialism is Magazine Journalism, which I prefer to hard news as you can really delve into a topic or issue rather than just reporting ‘this is what happened’. It’s also so diverse, you could be writing a profile, a lifestyle piece or an investigative report. For me, I enjoy writing about food, travel and race. Putting a magazine together is incredibly creative, from coming up with the initial concept to taking photos and doing the design work – I love the process.

Journalism - Priyankaa & Andrea

Who inspires you?

Andrea: People. There are so many fascinating and talented people out there, especially in the Food industry. It’s incredible how much love and hard work goes into what they produce. I also look up to my Editor at Runner’s World, Rick Pearson, he’s a fantastic journalist who dedicates his spare time to helping younger journalists get their foot in the door.

Priyankaa: I wouldn’t say there is one particular person who inspires me, but I’m passionate about amplifying the voices and experiences of under-represented communities. Shining a light on issues which would otherwise be ignored really inspires me. My dissertation is about the impact of racism on mental health and wellbeing, something I feel isn’t spoken about enough.

What inspired your final project and what is it all about?

Andrea: Thrifty Eats was born from a simple chat on WhatsApp. I wanted to pitch a magazine about sustainability and seasonal eating, and Priyankaa had always been passionate about living life on a budget but still making sustainable choices. Those two concepts mixed together really well and Thrifty Eats came to life very quickly.

Priyankaa: We created Thrifty Eats – with the strapline ‘easy on the planet, easy on the pocket’. The goal is to help people eat and cook in a planet-friendly way without breaking the bank. There are already lots of magazines about food as well as about sustainability, but nothing specifically focuses on sustainable eating on a budget. There’s a definite gap in the market for this, and from our market research, we found that this is something that people would engage with, especially in the current climate where more consumers want to make planet-friendly choices.

Thrifty Eats Magazine by Priyankaa and Andrea

What have you enjoyed most throughout your course?

Andrea: I’ve definitely enjoyed how practical and hands-on the course was. From the very start, we were out interviewing people, writing articles and gathering possible ideas for magazine projects.

Priyankaa: Definitely how practical it was too! We were thrown in the deep end and learnt so much so quickly. I really enjoyed learning so many new skills – one of my favourites was getting to grips with podcasting. With our friend Pete, Andrea and I started our own food podcast called Dig In, have a listen.

What job role will you be looking for now that you’ve finished University?

Andrea: I’m hoping to find a job as a Staff Writer or Editorial Assistant at a magazine, reporting on the world. Lately, I have been particularly interested in working for B2B magazines.

Priyankaa: I’ve been very lucky to find some work for the Sunday Times Travel Magazine, overseeing their competitions and offers for their special 200th issue in August. I’ve also just started a new job as an editorial assistant at a Bristol-based content agency, The Content Emporium.

What are the biggest challenges you perceive going into industry?

Andrea: It’s such a competitive industry. There are so many talented journalists looking for jobs, especially with all the current redundancies. It’s also a very overwhelming environment, with the expectation to be really switched on and constantly consuming news.

Priyankaa: It’s a challenging time to enter into Magazine Journalism, as we know that magazine circulations are declining. I also think without by-lines in big publications, it’s difficult to convince editors they should choose you to write for them.

What advice would you give to students going into their first year in September?

Andrea: Get as much work experience as you can! Student media is great, but you also need experience in a professional environment. With COVID19 I realise this may be a little more difficult, so add Editors and Journalists on LinkedIn and ask them for career tips.

Priyankaa: I’d say grasp every opportunity! On a practical level, the MA Magazine Journalism course is very intense, so if you’re starting that make sure you are organised. Within that, make sure you allow time to relax and enjoy yourself too.

“Grasp every opportunity & get as much work experience as you can!”

Priyankaa and Andrea

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