It’s Time to Get Personal

Hi everyone, how are we in week 5 already? Time does go fast when you are happy, but I have found that time can go considerably slow when you are feeling demotivated. You might be asking how do I know this? Well, I’m going to take you on a very, very quick journey (approximately 200 words) to speak about how I went from being very underwhelmed in my life to becoming a better and happier person.

An image that says think positive.

So, I have done counselling, which didn’t work, so I thought if that couldn’t help me, what will? I then proceeded to find a new job in a company that made me feel very welcomed. However, my pessimistic thinking always conditioned me to believe that a positive impact would be followed by a negative one. I began to hate this job, and because I was working from home, I felt isolated and lonely. I have never met any of my team in person so I felt my connection with them was not as strong as it could be. I found it difficult to communicate with anyone about my struggles and to be honest, if I did express my concerns no one would listen. I then decided something had to change. One day in the middle of May, I received a notification for a Student Intern role at Edge Hill. This was perfect for me; I could leave my current job, and I finally might enjoy myself.

Right! I only have about 100 words left, but I might be a bit cheeky and go over.

So, this next paragraph is a text message I wrote to my friend after I had my interview with Laura and Alison, so I apologise for the unnecessary slang.

“Lad, that interview went really well, yenno. I do think I could get the job, but you never know. I genuinely just want to be happy, lol.”

So, when I found this text message, it made me laugh. A possible explanation for the positive experiences during this internship is that I have made some good friends with my fellow interns (shoutout to the FoE interns and my Vlog-Blog Squad team). In addition, every time I see Laura, Leah or Sarah, you are always smiling and making sure that we all feel comfortable in our role, so thank you!

I would love to do this job after the internship because it allows me to unleash this creative side I didn’t even know I had, so Laura and Leah, if there is a job available soon, you know where I am…

A picture containing text saying good vibes only on an outdoor sign.

This internship has allowed me to grow as an individual, improve my current skills, and develop new skills I never thought would be possible. One thing I can definitely take away from this is that I am more sociable than I thought.

Thanks everyone,

By Reece Thomas (Student Intern)

Picture of Reece Thomas.

A Week in the Life of a Student Intern

Monday 

A cup of tea on a desk next to a laptop.

Today was the start of my third week of a 12-week internship. I woke up at 7:30 am to get ready for the day. I had some peanut butter on toast, with a glass of water for breakfast. Once the time struck 8:45 am I turned on my laptop ready to get started. I made a Gantt chart to help plan my time and on it the next allocated task was to make the documents for a module fully accessible by Wednesday. 

Helping others is my passion, therefore, making documents accessible so people with disabilities can read the contents of the documents clearly. Completing the Word documents and PowerPoints ensured that the process of making the documents was smooth sailing as they are the easiest type of documents to make 100% accessible. The templates sped up making the documents fully accessible because font styles and the layout were already set, putting me in a good mood.  

I also attended a UniSkills Webinar on academic resilience. Resilience is something I often struggle with, even though my grades are consistently in the 80s I still feel unconfident with my abilities. In the Webinar I got asked to score myself on how confident I felt about my resilience, I scored a 4. However, the result of the Webinar increased this score to 8 – I know right, double the score, wow! I would highly recommend attending, it made me feel like a better student. Overall, today was an amazing experience and I can’t wait to get back to it tomorrow. 

Tuesday 

Tuesday was yet another very enjoyable day. Andrew (my colleague) and I got most of the documents 100% accessible for one module in two working days, I am excited because we are prepared now ready for the meeting tomorrow. I am on the autistic spectrum, which means I find it challenging to communicate with others. However, my colleague was very welcoming from the start, which allowed me to feel a lot more comfortable. This made my confidence with communication skyrocket. Therefore, my communication skills have improved through this internship and we are only a few weeks in! 

I also attended a creating interactive video and media content training session. As a Computing student, I always love learning how to use new software and Web applications. Canva and Sparks, are online applications where you can create your very own interactive video presentations, from loads of templates. The most surprising tool is in Microsoft PowerPoint, where you can record your presentation slides with your webcam, I did not know you could do that! These training sessions are indeed very useful. 

A cup of tea on a desk next to a laptop on the web application Canva.

Finally, I attended a Careers workshop hosted by Claire, a Careers Advisor, to make the perfect CV. She was very welcoming and went through these useful guidelines: two pages max, relevant and other work experience, include your hobbies and most relevant information first, which all of you should take advantage of next time you make a CV. Overall, today was a fantastic, productive day and I’m looking forward to the meeting tomorrow. 

A cup of tea on a desk next to a laptop, watching the perfect CV Webinar.

Wednesday 

I woke up raring to face another day! Only one long PDF document had to be made accessible by adding and editing some tags and adding alt text to the images, we also created the learning episodes for the module, so students can have easy navigation of the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). Attending meetings is a little difficult for me, I often find it difficult to locate the right words to say I was a slightly nervous for the meeting.  

When the clock strikes 2, Andrew and I joined the meeting and started talking about how we have been getting on this week. I was very glad to hear my department are very happy with what we have accomplished over the past 2 days and were not expecting us to get most of the documents 100% accessible – hearing that I was doing an excellent job it raised my communication confidence a great deal. The only thing that needed attention were the lecture slides, the bullet point style needs to be changed, Ally was not showing it correctly.  I left the day with a huge smile on my face and tomorrow is another road to success, it can only get better from here! 

Thursday 

For me, Thursday is the most productive day of the week because I’m far enough into it, where I’m in the zone of my work and know what exactly I had to be getting on with. I took initiative and created a master slide template that works for all lecture slides to be viewed as intended on Ally. I showed my colleague and he was very pleased with the result, he tested the template, told me it worked. In addition, we will be able to race through the lecture slides. I felt glad that my solution would make our lives easier over the remaining 8 weeks of the internship. 

A cup of tea on a desk next to a laptop, viewing the Padlet and Wakelet training session.

I also had an interesting training session on the web application software Padlet and Wakelet. Padlet and Wakelet allow you to create walls and others can post on them. These are an exciting addition to the students learning as lecturers cause them to allow their students to participate in discussions, share ideas, reflect on their learning and more! I’m all about that! 

https://www.linkedin.com/learningOne of my favourite parts of the internship is being able to learn on my own time during working hours, I don’t have to be consistently working on creating learning episodes or working on accessibility. So, in the last hour of the day, I decided to make a start on the Communicating with Confidence course on LinkedIn Learning.

Friday 

It’s hard to believe a third of the internship will be completed by the end of today – time has really flown by. I spent the day making Word documents and PowerPoints accessible and completing the LinkedIn Learning course. This is a fantastic course – I would highly recommend it! It’s given me some useful strategies like breathing, using your hands to make yourself calmer to be a confident communicator.  

The Communicating with Confidence course on LinkedIn Learning

Reflecting is part of being a Student Intern, it’s really useful for seeing how much I have progressed over the week, for me, it’s my working speed. The work I produce is usually at a high standard, but my work pace is slow; my action plan is to use a stopwatch to time myself how long it takes to make all documents accessible. If I use that strategy, I’m sure my work speed will improve to make me a better employee in the future. 

By the end of the day, I left, with a smile on my face and looking forward to working with my fellow Student Interns next week – I can’t wait! Keep an eye out for Rachel’s blog coming out soon, you won’t want to miss it! 

By Simon Hackett-Evans (Student Intern) 

For me, for you, for others…

We have all heard the phrase ‘be kind’. It saturates social media, street art and conversations between friends and family- but what does it really mean? How can we truly ‘be kind’? For me this phrase is inherently subjective, and to achieve kindness one day can look entirely different to kindness the next, and it differs from person to person too. Within this post I would love to guide you to some small, effective ways that we can spread kindness, infect others with a smile and spread love.

For yourself:

I wholeheartedly believe that kindness to the self is imperative within life. In a world rooted in judgement, hate, and competition to be the ‘best’, we must strive to give ourselves a break from beauty standards on social media or becoming a mansion owner by 21 and love ourselves for being US! We are all perfect in our own ways, and I believe being kind, forgiving and patient to ourselves in life is crucial to happiness.

So here is a few things which will boost your kindness to YOU…

Take time for self-care; whether this is a facemask and takeaway night, going to the gym or enjoying a hobby, self-care is a must. Enjoy the mindfulness of joyous small moments like the smell of the early morning, your toast being the perfect golden brown or your favourite song coming on the radio. In addition, try to take a break from your phone screen (especially just before bed to help you get a deeper nights kip) and use the ‘app timer’ function on your smartphone to monitor and limit the time spent on social media apps… sometimes time slips away when we are engrossed in TikTok or browsing holiday photos on Facebook! Try to get outside, breathe in fresh air, go for a walk or a run around and enjoy the beautiful planet we have been blessed with… Kindness to your body is crucial too! Drink water, between three and four pints of water a day is the minimum our bodies need. Sleep- the recommended amount of sleep for the average adult is between 6 and 9 hours per night, so aim for this to allow your body time to reset, heal and prepare you for the next day! In addition to water, feeding your body with good food is important too- aim to get your five-a-day in, as well as eating foods high in dopamine (such as oily fish, nuts, seeds and dark chocolate) as these are a great way to keep your brain and body happy. Finally, one of the best forms of kindness to the self is dance! Having a boogie round your kitchen or bedroom, listening to your favourite music, and letting your body move releases serotonin and pumps us with energy- bonus points if you take your carefree dancing outside and soak up the summer sunrays simultaneously!

Image of a beach showing the sea, sand and sky.  A person in the background is about to surf and another is doing a handstand on the sand.

For friends and family:

Despite my hatred for chocolate/crisp companies writing ‘share bag’ on their snacks (as I know full well that I will be eating all of those buttons myself)- sharing a meal, a snack or just having a cup of tea with a friend/family member can be such a good tonic. Now that restrictions are easing, nipping for a coffee or even sitting in someone’s garden for a glass of something chilled can leave everyone feeling refreshed and beaming after spending time in good company. Although this may not seem an explicit act of kindness, sharing good company can turn someone’s hump-day into one looked fondly back on. Making memories and capturing them through your camera lens is heart warming and gives the opportunities to be kind to ourselves, and to have a laugh and enjoy good things with others also. I try to snap a couple of pictures too- nothing better than being able to look back and smile at days filled with positivity and happiness.

Some loved ones live further afield though- in this case I have the perfect way to put a smile on their face too… Our letterboxes are often filled with bank statements, bills, and flyers day-in day-out, send a card or letter to someone, just a short note to tell them that they are appreciated. This is something which undoubtedly puts a spring in my step! If you don’t want to write this on pen and paper, a simple text message or post on social media to express your appreciation of your loved ones is a small (but effective) way to be kind too…

A personal letter with 3 pink roses on top.

For strangers:

Kindness is not just limited to ourselves and those we love, although me looking after me and mine and you looking after you and yours is important, there are easy and effective ways to show kindness to others too. Whether this be making someone locally smile or helping a social cause across the other side of the globe, small acts of kindness go a long way…

Firstly, signing a petition is a quick and easy way to support social causes that you are personally passionate about, whether it be to reduce plastic waste in the ocean, helping achieving equal pay for all at work, or increasing government funding to support struggling communities- your signature projects kindness. Small donations via JustGiving pages or buying something from your local charity shop also spread kindness to strangers in need.

If charity shop-chic isn’t really your thing, you could be kind and make someone’s day by paying for the coffee of the person behind you when you are at Starbucks next, leave a small tip for staff next time you eat out or even just thank the bus driver on your way to work. Also, sharing positive messages through social media spreads kindness too- the media can often be quite negative and cause many people worry, so break this up on your timeline by sharing a positive affirmation or quote for your friends and followers to see.

A coffee cup.

I hope that this post has given you one or two ideas for ways you can be kind to yourself and be kind to others also. Remember, kindness comes from the heart and more often than not it is free! Treat yourself with the same amount of kindness that you would show others, and don’t forget that smiling is infectious… one mere smile from you could make the whole world smile!

Eleanor Rowell (Student Intern) – Social Sciences

Eleanor Rowell

Accessibility for All: 8 Ways to Make Your Social Media Content More Accessible.

Image of an iPhone screen displaying Instagram, Facebook and Twitter apps.

What is online accessibility and why is it important?

Online accessibility is the practice of making content available to as many people as possible. This means enabling those with disabilities to access content as effectively as those without disabilities.

With an estimated 53 million active social media users in the UK, we tend to take online access for granted. However, at least 1 in 5 people in the UK have a long-term illness, impairment or disability, and many more struggle with temporary disabilities that impact their online experience.

As of 23rd September 2018, accessibility regulations came into force for public sector bodies. However, just because it is mandatory for public bodies doesn’t mean we should not make it a normal part of our online activities. So, how can we start making our social media content more accessible?

Top Tips for Making your Social Media Content More Accessible.

Capitalise your hashtags.

Hashtags written entirely in lower or upper case are difficult to understand. Plus, screen readers will read hashtags as one word if individual words are not differentiated. Capitalise each word in your hashtags. For example, try writing #EdgeHillUniversity instead of #edgehilluniversity.

Add alt text to images.

Alt text describes the appearance and function of an image. This allows screen readers to identify and describe images, giving those with visual impairments, sensory processing difficulties and/or learning disabilities greater access to content. While sites may include image recognition technology that automatically generate alt text, the descriptions they produce are not always accurate. Therefore, it is worth taking the time edit auto generated alt text or to add alt text manually to ensure it is accurate and easy to understand. Keep it concise; 125 words max is a good limit to stick to. Most sites including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter provide options for adding alt text.

Be mindful when it comes to gifs.

Gifs are a fun way to express your feelings, but if they contain flashing content, they can induce seizures in those with photosensitive epilepsy. Avoid gifs containing flickers, flashes and/or blinks. Choose gifs with a pause option, or gifs that are set to stop after 5 seconds. And remember to add alt text that describes the gif’s content.

Provide captions for videos.

Captions are text versions of a video’s audio content. Captions are synchronised with the video’s content and enable those with impaired hearing to interact with videos. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tik Tok allow you to add auto generated captions to your video posts, stories and reels. Another way to increase accessibility is by providing a transcript or description of your video within your post caption.

You can download apps such as AutoCap and Voicella that enable you to add video captions manually. This is a good idea if you are using a feature that doesn’t enable editable auto captions.

Photo of closed captions being used for an Instagram story.
Testing closed captions in an Instagram story.

Limit your emoji use.

Emojis may look cute, but they aren’t always compatible with accessibility software. Text to speech and screenreaders typically generate descriptions for each emoji you use. For example, if you add five heart emojis in succession, this will be read as: “Heart heart heart heart heart”. So, try to avoid overdoing it. 2-3 emojis per post is good limit to stick to.

Image of iPhone screen displaying an emoji.

Avoid small fonts and custom fonts.


Customising with fun fonts and bold, italicised and/or underlined text may be a good way to make your online content stand out, but it’s not the easiest to read.Avoid ‘serif’ fonts, which are ornate fonts such as Garamond, Baskerville, Georgia and Courier New. It is best to stick to standard, ‘non serif’ fonts, such as Ariel, Calibri, Century Gothic, Helvetica and Verdana. You should also avoid using small font, which is tricky to read. For example, don’t cram a lot of tiny text into an Instagram story – simplify your message, or spread your text across a few posts to ensure readability.

Pay attention to colour contrast.

For most people, low colour contrast makes content difficult to understand, but it is especially difficult for those with visual impairments. Make sure there is sufficient contrast between foreground and background colours; for example, avoid using a pale font on a light background or deep font on dark background. You should also avoid colour combinations that make things indistinguishable to those who are colour-blind, such as green/red, blue/yellow and purple/dark blue. A common, colour-blind friendly combination is blue/orange.
Try familiarising yourself with accessible colour combinations with this handy Coloring for Colorblindness guide. You can also check out WebAim contrast checker.

Keep on top of new accessibility features.

Now that you know some of the basics, you’re ready to start making your social media content accessible. But don’t just rely on these pointers. Expand your understanding of accessibility and stay alert to any new features rolled out by the platforms you use.

For more information on digital accessibility, you can visit the UK Government guidance on accessible communications. If you would like to learn about writing with accessibility, please visit our Build Accessible student support guide.

By Laura Glancy (Student Intern)

Photograph of Laura Glancy

Student Intern – Medical School Blog

Hi,

My name is Safiyyah, I am a medical student and more importantly, a Digital Student Intern at Edge Hill University. I will be sharing the various roles the interns within the Medical school have undertaken and how these roles may differ from the ‘typical’ intern’s assignments.

Photograph of a skeleton

Within the first week of the student internship we were all given the initial training in regard to Blackboard and accessibility and a few pieces of software that we might be required to use, such as Panopto. It was highlighted that the majority of the interns would be working on making documents accessible within their department, this would most likely be the main project. It was clear this was not going to be the case within the Medical School through the project plans made available to us. The Medical School had been allocated three interns, two of which are Medical Students and the third is a Creative Writing Student. This aligned with the Medical School having three current projects. It was agreed upon that I was to undergo work on the Widening Access to Medicine project whilst my fellow interns undertook the Equality, Diversity, Inclusion project alongside the Postgraduate project. The allocation of projects seemed fitting as I had volunteered to help the WAM project previously and the EDI project required the skills of a creative writer.

Upon starting work on the WAM project during week 2, I was excited to get stuck in. As were we all! We all started with research tasks in our prospective projects where we would gather information regarding the topic we were given. So, for me, I was tasked with finding all the universities that had a widening access to medicine programme and make notes on the information they had available and what they offered within their programme. This research has deemed to be invaluable to me for the following tasks I was assigned. Following on from the research, the projects have involved the student interns identifying suitable candidates for clinical skills scenarios, creating scenarios that can be used in the future, filming a scenario for a summer school event taking place for a WAM event, and many more.

Photograph of someone recording a group a people.

Pivotally, we have enjoyed working within the Medical School as we have found it to be eye opening to think about the challenges that are involved in recruiting a diverse group of simulated patients and how we can overcome these challenges. We have enjoyed exploring the websites and finding areas in which EHU can improve whilst learning new terminology and becoming familiar with the simulation centre. We all agree that it is a nice feeling knowing that our work throughout this internship will have a positive impact on future students.

At the end of the day, the work all our Digital Student Interns are doing is invaluable as it will be of benefit for both current and future students. So keep up the good work guys!

By Safiyyah Mahmood (Student Intern)

Photograph of Safiyyah Mahmood

Overcoming Anxiety Limitations

Image highlighting a stressed individual with lots of thoughts going round her head.

My name is Amber Berry and I have anxiety. This sounds like a weird confession, or a secret coming out. The word anxiety itself I think is a word that scares a lot of people, purely because they don’t understand it. Or it’s the other end and they know exactly what it is and that’s exactly what scares them. I don’t think it has to be any of these things, it’s simply a small part of me. Not a part of who I am, but still its apart of my being. It’s a part of my being that brings struggles and I was scared that these struggles would affect my performance during the student internship. However, the internship has done something that I didn’t expect. It’s helped me improve. In this blog post, I’m hoping to detail how and that if anyone sees this who is interested in similar opportunities but is worried of being overwhelmed. I want to reassure you that it isn’t as immense or intimidating as it might seem.

Camera Lense

People. Now people are an interesting subject for me. I love them but new people…. I shrivel into a cocoon and want to hide from the world. It comes from a fear of judgement being afraid that myself is too much. Yet, there’s two things that’s slowly allowed me to start to eradicate this fear. Firstly, the people aren’t the people that we fear. Everyone I’ve met so far on this internship have been some of the most accepting, caring, and welcoming people. Everyone completely different but still helping each other. Also, with most of the interactions taking place online. I’ve been able to face my social fears from the comfort of my living room. As little as it might sound, being in a space that is familiar removes some of that facing the unknown which can be so daunting. I was talking to people in the space filled with memories with all the people I loved. In the place where the goofiest, real me wan usually on full display. Why should I let that change just because a camera is on? That made the biggest difference of all, because if people are being so kind and accepting of the real version of me, there was nothing to be afraid of.

Well, there’s one of the biggest obstacles taken care of but I know there’s more. I was scared that I might be too overwhelmed and that the work might feel like a tidal wave. It had happened before with university work at times and I didn’t want to push myself to hard. But the internship has taught me some valuable lessons on how to manage this stress. We use outlook calendar to view our meetings and see things clearly. I’ve figured not only having a routine but being able to see it visually and clearly helped immensely. It made me feel prepared and ready for the weeks. Moreover, I’ve been able to learn how to keep a work and life balance. Whereas at university I found it difficult to split my time between them. I now know when I need a break, what to do on said break, when I need to see some of my favourite humans and sometimes when I just need to be alone. It’s something that I wish I had known a long time ago, and it’s something I don’t think a lot of people think about.

I want this to be an encouragement, to everyone who worries their differences, or their fears will be obstacles. Even if they are, it won’t control your experience and there’s the possibility to accomplish things you’d never expect. Don’t let yourself be held back by anything, take control and remember that nothing defines you unless you allow it to.

By Amber Berry (Student Intern)

Amber Berry, Student Intern

How to prepare for an easy day

After 20 years, I am slowly starting to appreciate the importance of time. Sure, I am sometimes excellent at time management, but then I can be awful. For example, one day last week, I thought it would be a great idea to stay awake until 3:00 am and then be up, ready and prepared for 8:45 am. However, after that, it all went downhill.

Think about your past week. Did you wake up every morning prepared and fully awake? Don’t worry if you didn’t, but it highlights you might need to change your lifestyle. This Student Internship is a fantastic opportunity, but sometimes it can be overwhelming so let’s change our habits to be the best we can!

I am not sure if Headspace wants to give me a sponsorship deal because I am essentially promoting their app right now, but last week I found out that you can get Headspace for free if you have a student Spotify account. The app is a means of making your life better. For example, this week, I have used it every night, and I have even fallen asleep from some of the guided meditations.

Mindfulness

Don’t worry, I know what you are thinking right now, I know some of you don’t really ‘vibe’ with meditations, but there is also calming music and other activities to look at if you are interested. Nevertheless, I am essentially trying to convey meditation is an excellent means for this internship. If we are fully alert and prepared for our early starts, it will significantly impact our contribution to this internship. In fact, I’d even argue that everyone around you will benefit from it.

What if you completed this every weekday? It would become a part of your daily life and would feel less like a daily chore. YOU NEED TO DO THIS!

OK, I will stop shouting now… I might just be getting a bit carried away. Another way to prepare for work is to make sure you update the Microsoft Teams calendar. On Monday, I scheduled everything I had to complete this week. I promise you it will improve your time-management skills, and it just makes others aware that you might be busy, so they don’t bother you. One thing I dislike is people bothering me when I am really, really, really busy (I turn into a mini Hulk). So, for me, this just massively helps my concentration throughout the day. It allows me to have structure, and sequentially, I perform more effectively.

Picture of an a small alarm clock

At the end of the day, maybe ask yourself did you complete all your tasks? Did you feel calm? Did Reece’s advice work? If not, I guess my psychology degree was all for nothing… I am just joking. Just try your best, and you never know you may benefit from reading this blog.

By Reece Thomas (Student Intern)

Picture of Reece Thomas.

A Week in the Life of a Student Intern

Week 2

Monday

When I woke up on Monday morning, my first thought was, I start in my department today. At first, I was really nervous. I was so used to having forty other people with me, but this time it was different. Thankfully, we still had a big meeting with all of us first thing at 9am with the LTD team to ease us into the morning. After completing Phase 1, which was the induction and training week, Phase Two was going to be working in our allocated departments on a range of projects, whilst still gaining and enhancing our skills. Luckily, we aren’t fully leaving the LTD team yet as they are going to be giving us additional support and training over the next few weeks.

Next, we had a meeting with our new line manager and our key contact for the next eleven weeks, as I have been assigned to the Faculty of Education – My key contact is Sarah Wright. She assigned us our weekly tasks on Monday, including: reading lists, learning episodes and getting to grips with software’s such as Padlet, Adobe Spark and Google Sheets. I was really looking forward to learning about new software and gaining more experience working with a smaller cohort.

Photograph of workspace including laptop and Ipad.

Tuesday

Tuesday, Tuesday, Tuesday,  I had a great start to my Tuesday morning. As a team we had all met at 9am to discuss our plan for the day and to collaboratively work on an Adobe Spark poster, introducing us to the rest of the department. My part in this was making sure that the poster contained Alt Text so it was easily accessible. Learning how to make documents accessible is really important especially within a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). As part of my role within the internship, I will be able to assess and apply my knowledge of accessibility to Learning Modules so they are accessible for everyone.

Meeting everyday at nine with my team really is a great start to the day, it allows us to track our progress. The way to do this even more efficiently is that we decided to shift speaker every week, this allows us all to enhance our ability to lead a meeting. We also have someone designated as the minute taker, so if anyone is unsure on what to do next or wants to reflect on the meeting, they have a document containing all the information.

Tuesday was the day that we also met with the FoE social media team and discussed multiple ways to promote the faculty on social media. Using social media is really important for Educational settings as they can communicate and collaborate online with one another to create and celebrate opportunities. I found this super useful as I was able to transfer these ideas to another project some of the Student Interns are working on, which is to use Social Media to promote the work we are completing as well and to promote the Internship.

Wednesday

I think most people can agree that on a Wednesday, you either feel great because Friday is only two days away or you are left in a little bit of a hump, because Friday is still only two days away. I was super excited to hear Laura and Leah’s advice and feedback to collective ideas the Social Media Intern Team had come up with. However before I could get carried away with ideas, I had tasks to complete for my department. Wednesday’s task was to start on a learning episode. A learning episode is a structured way of learning, especially useful when it comes to teaching and learning online. A learning episode can contain different online tools to help students stay engaged with the content. An online tool that I used throughout the learning episode which I constructed were: Adobe Spark and Padlet. This task really helped me understand the amount of work and effort our lecturers put in to every session they deliver.

I was so excited by the time half one had rolled around, because not only could I get my hands on some more social media content, but I also decided to collaborate with two of my fellow Student Interns, Rachel and Simon on bringing you this blog every week. This was a big step for me because usually I like working alone, but one thing the internship has taught me already is that teamwork is efficient and really helpful especially when you have thirty-nine other people to help you out when you are a little stuck.

Thursday

By the time Thursday had come, I was already almost finished with the tasks that Sarah had set us. So, I decided to refresh my mind on all the training which had been provided for us by Laura, Leah and the rest of the LTD team. Luckily for us all of our meetings and training sessions are recorded. So, after I finished my tasks I refreshed my mind on Accessibility, how to use Panopto and how to make PDF’s accessible (which before this session was posing many questions for me).

This took me a couple of hours, but I still had a lot of my working day left. I jumped onto a meeting with the rest of my FoE team and asked where they needed help. After sorting out a few issues and finally being able to put a banner on Blackboard I was done. But it was not yet five o’clock…

I think one of the best things about this internship is that you do really learn on the job. Both Laura and Sarah had expressed the importance of enhancing and gaining skills. Therefore, for the last hour of my working day, I completed a few LinkedIn Learning courses surrounding topics such as how to lead a meeting and how to utilize my skills to their best abilities.

Friday

Finally it was Friday and the second week of my internship was almost over. After my daily meeting, the first thing I did was Admin. I made sure I had filled out my daily timetable. Once that was checked off, I moved onto my weekly reflection. As a student it is important to reflect on your work, this is echoed within the Internship. We are encouraged to write about what we have done, what we found hard and how we overcame those challenges. Within mine, I spoke of how at the start of this week I lacked experience working with spreadsheets, because they can be finicky. Yet, by the end of the week, I became more aware of how they worked and came to grips with it. I had also watched a few LinkedIn Learning courses to help with some tricky parts too.  

Screenshot of LinkedIn Learning course open on laptop.

At the end of the day, I was looking forward to my next week working with my department and excited to work further with my team.

By Sharnie Bowen (Student Intern)

Getting ready for a day as a Student Intern

I think we can all agree that getting ready for work when we’re online is strangely different. We get to sleep later, wonder if pyjamas are appropriate work attire and see the couch as an appropriate workstation.

Everyone has a slightly different routine, but I find we can learn tips and tricks from each other!

Watch the video below where I explain my morning routine for getting ready for Microsoft Teams calls, and maybe we can both gain some new tips and tricks!

By Amber Berry (Student Intern)