Michelle Gooden-Jones from Al Jazeera English shared her experience and advice at the college’s Creative, Computing and Media End of Year Show.
Michelle, who has also reported for US media including NBC News, explained how she studied TV journalism at university and did an internship at Al Jazeera, aided by a friend’s mum who was a presenter and introduced her to an executive producer.
She said: “You need to study media or journalism, but you also do need to get yourself out there and telling stories. It’s also about connections as well, so network and make sure people know that you’re interested in working in the industry because then they’re more likely to help you.”
Al Jazeera’s main headquarters are in Doha, Qatar, with Al Jazeera English located at The Shard. The channel broadcasts to 80 million homes in 100 countries and its reporters come from all over the world.
Michelle admitted it can be harder for under-represented groups to find work in the industry but with the right mentors and determination it was possible to succeed.
“As long as you go in there and you’re confident in yourself and you have stories and you do the work, there’s nothing stopping any of you from achieving in news,” she said.
The End of Year Show celebrated the work created by students across the college’s Creative Media, Computing and Music courses, and saw this year’s best performing students presented with mini-Oscar statuettes and certificates of achievement.
Students on Music courses at CONEL will be able record and mix their own tracks in a new £30,000 recording studio at the college’s Tottenham Centre this September.
The studio is kitted out with leading industry-standard equipment and features a live recording area, control room, microphones, mixers, synthesizers and digital software.
CONEL runs Music Performance and Production courses from Level 1-3 led by lecturers who have many years’ experience working in the music industry.
Our teachers have worked for major music companies alongside top artistes, been influential on the club scene and recorded music for TV series.
Apply now to start composing and recording your own tracks on one of our music courses.
Creative Media Level 1 Diploma student Daniela-Elena Moise, 19, was presented with this year’s award for Best Photographer.
She said: “I’ve enjoyed everything about the course. I’ve taken photos, learnt how to do a promotion and make a documentary, and created layouts for magazines and leaflets. My teachers have been amazing, I’ve never had teachers like this. They’ve really helped me and have made it a lot of fun in class.”
The show featured showreels of students’ work during their studies featuring clips of film trailers, short films and music videos as well as video games, 2D and 3D animations and graphic design.
Toan Phan, Curriculum Manager Computing Creative and Media, inspired students at the show when he shared how he came to the UK as a Vietnamese refugee but later graduated from university despite being dyslexic, before working as a web designer and a teacher at CONEL.
IT Diploma students Mario Busato and Alex Gomeniuk spoke about a project they worked on with an actual client to design a website called Key London Walks providing information on walking tours around north London.
There was also an esports competition where students played computer games against each other with the chance to win a £30 Amazon voucher, which was won by Creative Media Production student Glen Miguel.
Students also posed for photos against a VIP backdrop with various props including a picture frame and silly disguises as a memento of their time at college.
Laila Hassanzadeh, Head of School for Computing, Creative and Media, said: “This academic year students have produced some amazing pieces of work, which has been reflected in their high achievement rates this year.
“The End of Year Show was a wonderful way to showcase their work and celebrate the successes of all our wonderful students.”
If you’re looking to get into the media or IT, CONEL’s courses will give you the knowhow to work in these fast-growing and exciting industries.