Feedback from schools
Emails received from teachers and students across the UK after the Shine School Media Awards 2023:
“Yesterday was magnificent, and such a lovely day for our pupils! To get a nomination for Nancy was a huge step forward, and Jamies award was huge for him and his Mum. A lovely prize and has spurred them on. Jamie wants to setup a podcast now!!”
Ben Dlugokecki, Osborne School
“I just wanted to say thank you for organising such a wonderful event. My students were absolutely inspired. The talks by Ms Merali, Ms Vanneck-Smith and Ms Clark were so fascinating; it was definitely a very memorable event.”
Teresa Long, Harrogate Ladies’ College
“I just wanted to pass on our thanks to you and the entire Shine team for a wonderful day yesterday. It is the second year we have entered the competition. Both days leave an incredibly strong mark on the memory and motivate us going forward. Meeting students and teachers from other schools who create podcasts, digital media, newspapers and magazines is incredibly inspiring. It makes us feel like we are part of something bigger.
“It is a privilege to meet experts and benefit from their advice. It’s a world we don’t normally have access to. The work experiences students have been offered are incredible and will make a real difference in their lives.
Emma Gallagher, King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls
“We have entered the Shine Awards for seven years and the motivation, aspiration and challenge that the competition gives our students is incredible.
“Our Sixth Form magazine is a flagship publication and we are so proud of the efforts that our Editorial team make each year – the magazine continues to go from strength to strength. Attending the magnificent Awards ceremony in London, hearing from experts within the field of journalism and publishing, is truly inspirational. I would advise any teacher to get involved and to get their students involved too. We will most definitely be entering next year…”
Tina McMillan, Tarporley High School
“The Shine School Media Awards were a great experience for our students.
“Not only did it give them validation and reward for their hard work, it also opened their eyes to new possibilities for where they could take the project. Seeing the great work of other schools and colleges and having the opportunity to talk to professionals and fellow students was both inspiring and practically useful.”
Dominic Webber, Hummersknott Academy
“Being part of Shine was a wonderful experience for our students.
“It gave them a tremendous sense of recognition; the support from the organisation was excellent; and the final event in London surpassed anything I have ever attended of this type. I can certainly recommend the process to anybody interested in promoting media work in their school or college.”
Chris Green, The Perse School
“I never knew about the Shine Awards until an art teacher sent me the link back in 2014. Since that day we have entered every year in what is a focal point for our Publications Committee. The awards day is a highlight for us as a group and we use this as an opportunity to celebrate all the outstanding efforts throughout the year.”
“Seeing and working with people like Anneliese reinforces the importance journalism and I have met and worked alongside people who I would never have thought possible before signing up to the Shine Awards. For my students to have the opportunity to meet with Bettine Pellant, Professor Simon Heffer, Liz Hunt and Michael Harrison (to name but a few) is incredible. For us to spend time with experts in the field on the awards day is also amazing.
“But for one email, that could have been deleted, we have had a wealth of experience bestowed upon us. So don’t hit delete, hit the enter button and see what a difference Shine can make to your school and publications team.”
Alan Williams, Altrincham Grammar School for Boys
“We wanted to say thank you again for a wonderful day yesterday. The workshops were so beneficial and the entire day was really well organised with many opportunities. It was lovely to meet you, we’re so grateful we could be a part of it all.”
Tara, Elena, Grace, Fynn, and Mehul, King Edward V1 Five Ways
“For us, the competition has provided inspiration for how we can take our podcast channel to the next level. We left the awards ceremony with lots of practical tips but also food for thought; it’s been a delight to be involved!”
Amaryllis Barton, King Edward VI Stratford-on-Avon
“I just wanted to email to say thank you for another wonderful day at the Shine Awards.
“It was an inspirational and eye opening experience for our students and one that I’m sure they’ll never forget.”
Rebecca Welch, Runshaw College
“I just wanted to thank you personally (and all the team at Shine!) for the amazing day that we had yesterday.
“Honestly, it was the best experience for the students and for me- we have all come into school buzzing (but exhausted!) today and on the way home on the train, Freyja and Lillie were making plans for next year’s entry 😊 Your speakers were impressive, as was the venue- such a wonderful opportunity for young people to get involved in. Everyone we spoke to was delightful: enthusiastic, passionate, engaging. We loved every minute!
“Hopefully see you again next year!”
Lisa Summers, Rushcliffe Spencer Academy
“Just wanted to say a massive thank-you to you and the team for putting on a truly fantastic event for the students.
“My two representatives thoroughly enjoyed themselves and loved meeting with the workshop leads, lunch haha and the speakers.”
Zoe Haynes, Stratford School Academy
“The Shine Awards were the incentive my school needed to put the structure in place to publish an award-winning magazine.
Without Shine, there would have been no magazine; no meetings with professional publishers exploring the process of how a magazine comes to life; no in-depth discussions about content; no platform for creative writing, satire and fashion shoots; no all-school vote for a name; no inspiration for graphics, and photography; no incentive to write business plans; no reason for students to ‘step up’ and call suppliers looking for sponsorship; no late nights with creative juices running; no bitten fingernails hoping it would all come together; no special ‘backs-against-the-wall’ bond built between Media, Business and English faculties; no visit to the printers; no celebration when visions of what might be became a reality; no accolades for a school in R.I; no growth in self-confidence, skill-sets and belief. No recognition where recognition can be transformative.
“The award was the catalyst for an invaluable process where leaders emerged and hidden talent was exposed. It helped students and teachers bond in the special way that is the dream when teachers start teaching. It helped students who had little self-belief grown and blossom in unexpected ways. It helped confident students learn how to share that confidence and work as a team. It helped teach the value of deadlines, personal responsibility and perseverance.
“It helped prepare students for life.”
Andy Rice, Teacher
“Working on The Galley magazine has taught me so much, from how to create a magazine to working effectively in a team. It was to my great surprise, after 5 years of work, when I was Highly Commended in the Most Outstanding Pupil category of the Shine School Media Awards.
“It was a great honour, and the trip to London was fantastic; being able to see all of the other publications was both inspiring and encouraging. I have no doubt that it made us work even harder this year!
“The workshops were also great, and the copyright one which I attended taught me lots which I was able to put into use this year.”
Tom Keely, Dollar Academy
Highly Commended, Most Outstanding Pupil
“I was extremely honoured to be recognised as one of the Highly Commended students in the Most Outstanding Pupil category.
“The whole journey the rest of the contributors and I went through, from editing the magazine, to travelling to Stationers’ Hall for the awards ceremony, was an incredibly rewarding end to a lot of hard work put in by all of those who helped make the magazine the success that it was. The whole process was also a fantastic opportunity to gain valuable experience for me personally.
“The design skills I had to learn in order to create this edition of the magazine have proved incredibly useful throughout the Art Foundation course I completed this year and will definitely be utilised even more as I undertake an Illustration degree and prepare for a career in the print industry.”
Tom Willis, St Olave’s Grammar School
Highly Commended Most Outstanding Pupil
“Winning Most Inspirational Teacher last year was a real honour and being part of the day was a great experience for both myself and my students.
“I think that the Shine Awards are a great showcase for the hard work being undertaken by both students and teachers alike. Stationers’ Hall was a great location and being able to engage with industry professionals provided a great opportunity to learn more about the publishing industry.
“The award has had a lasting impact and is something that I am asked about often by my colleagues and friends. I am thankful for the opportunity that Shine has given me to share my work and I hope that it has the same positive impact on this year’s winner.”
John Branney, DLD College
Most Inspirational Teacher
“A prestigious award, supported by many important companies within the field of publishing and journalism.
“When we saw the other entries, we were worried ours looked less professional or serious. Winning the award for Best Magazine was therefore a real surprise, but also brilliant validation for the students. They did it their way, and had great fun doing it. For esteemed judges to approve was amazing!”
Fiona Steward, Teacher at Colyton Grammar School
“For us, above anything else, it was a validation.
“We set up the magazine essentially by ourselves, and we liked what we had done, but we didn’t know if anyone else would like it, and by winning this national competition, it gave us a sense that what we were doing was a good thing.
“It gave us the motivation to keep at it.”
Jonathan Steward, Colyton Grammar School
“We never imagined we’d arrive at a glitzy awards ceremony in London having reached the final shortlist.
“A great experience — we’ve already registered for next year!”