Revealed: the front runners in magazine cover prize showdown

These are the gorgeous glossies making a splash in the clash of the covers contest for journalism students at De Montfort University, Leicester.
Six striking designs have made the shortlist in the university’s annual cover prize competition, which is being judged this year by Joe Brewin, deputy editor of FourFourTwo, the world’s biggest football magazine.
Students on DMU’s Journalism degree create print and digital magazines in a final-year project which puts the writing and design skills they have gained during their studies to the test. Each year, the best covers go head to head for a cash prize.
The page-ones to watch in this year’s crop are:

MMXX, a defiantly upbeat magazine showcasing inspiring stories amid the gloom of lockdown, created by Khrista Davis, Mary De-Wind, Beatriz Ferreira, Luke Pawley and Rean Rehman.

Horizon, a contemporary lifestyle magazine telling tales of hope and trauma created by Maryia Lall, Claudia Montague, Temba Ncube, Sonia Raju and Millie Steptoe, which includes a powerful story of a survivor of so-called conversion therapy.

Escape, a socially-aware health and wellbeing magazine with a keen interest in environmental and mental health issues, created by Matthew Childs, Izzi Rix and Abbie Wilkinson, and featuring an in-depth report on women with endometriosis and their long struggles to get diagnosed.

Blood.Sweat.Tears, a modern sports magazine with a focus on football, wrestling, boxing, basketball and tennis, created by Samuel Gill, Adam Rear, Harry Shellard, Oliver Taylor and James Wynn.

Spotlight, an entertainment/culture magazine aimed at Gen Z and millennials created by Savannah Duncan, Samuel Hornsby, Salma Ouaguira Abir and Khadisha Thomas, which boasts an interview with the I May Destroy You star Weruche Opia.

Rivo, an arts and culture magazine created by Rhys Bailey, Victoria Kingsley, Isatou Ndure and Omar Qavi, featuring an in-depth interview with Sex Education star Rakhee Thakrar.

The winning magazine is due to be announced next month, with a £200 prize up for grabs. Journalism programme leader Brian Dodds said: “Each year, I’m struck by the impressively high standard of the magazines produced by our talented students at DMU and this is yet another very strong shortlist of contenders. Well done to them all.”

This poll is no longer accepting votes

Vote for your favourite cover

De Montfort University student reflects on fantastic trip to New York City

By Chantelle Roberts


Twenty-year-old, third year student from Brigstock, working at reception in De Montfort University

A grateful student has praised organisers of the #DMUglobal trip to New York for giving him an experience he normally could not have afforded.

#DMUglobal, an international experience programme for De Montfort University students, took 1,000 third year students to the Big Apple at the start of January 2017.

Jack Porter, a 20-year-old third year student studying English Literature at De Montfort University, says his trip to New York lasted for five days.

Informed through the #DMUglobal email system, Jack discovered the opportunity to be sent to New York with his peers.

DMU offered to pay a hefty £800 off students’ travel and hospitality costs, giving many students the chance of a lifetime to travel to another part of the world.

Whilst the third year exclusive trip gave students a chance to explore New York in their free time, each group went on tailor-made activities specific to the course they are studying while at university.

Through the English course, Jack and fellow students visited the Tenement museum, the public library and the United Nations Headquarters.

A grateful Jack said: “Funding by DMU was a big help, they organised buses to and from the airport and I feel I have been given the chance to go somewhere I wouldn’t have normally been able to afford.”

Jack who also works for the Students’ Union, explained the next trip organised by #DMUglobal will be to Paris and he recommended any students interested should check out the information via

DMU journalism graduate racks up 1.3 MILLION views with viral video


A De Montfort University graduate has become an internet sensation by sprinting 100m while juggling a football.

Football freestyler Matt Wolstenholme filmed himself doing kick-ups while running along an athletics track and the video has more than 1.3 million views.

The clip of the 34-year-old Londoner went viral when it was shared by popular Facebook page The Sport Bible. Watch here.

Matt, who graduated with a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism in 2004, also holds a Guinness World Record for the longest distance juggling a football. He did kick-ups for 20km, which took him five hours.

He said: “It’s strange to think that more than a million people have watched a clip of me kicking a ball around for 100m. I’m really chuffed by the reaction – the comments and feedback have been great.”

One of the thousands of Facebook comments read: “Hope it is an Olympic sport in the future.”

Another said: “Your turn Usain Bolt!”

Matt has featured on national television and performed his skills around the world. For more about his exploits, visit his website.

Read all about it! Journalism students win awards

2016 - Journalism awards

They think it’s all over…it is now! The Journalism Class of 2016

Trainee journalists have been awarded for their reporting skills at a celebration ceremony to mark the end of their De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) degree course.

Alison Martin, deputy news editor of the Leicester Mercury, joined Gary Sherrard, Head of Communications at Leicester Tigers and Pete Wardman of BBC Radio Leicester to hand out prizes to the students, who will officially graduate in July.Tutors at the NCTJ-accredited Leicester Centre for Journalism organized the event to recognize the talent and hard work shown by single and joint honours students throughout the three-year course.

Beth Smith won the Leicester Mercury District Reporter of the Year award after impressing tutors with her ability to dig out stories from around the city.

2016 - Journalism awards

District Reporter Award: Beth Smith (left) with Leicester Mercury Deputy News Editor Alison Martin

She said: “I am so honoured, I really did not expect this! The course has been amazing, we have all enjoyed it so much.”

Alison – who is a former DMU graduate herself – had words of advice for the young reporters: “Journalism is all about eyes and ears, spotting stories and talking to people. It really does make such a difference if you are finding the stories – it’s such a better buzz then if writing a press release and waiting for emails. Always be on the lookout and always be thinking about the best angle, it’s the way to stand out to future employers.”

Best Arts and Ents reporter was Sam Chambers. The award was presented by tutor Andy Plaice, a regular reviewer for national magazines and websites, and who is writing a book on theatre criticism.

2016 - Journalism awards

Arts & Ents Award: Sam Chambers (left) with lecturer Andy Plaice

Sam said: “My passion is music and I did a feature on a local band, Casino Empire who are now Arcades. I never thought I would like theatre but I’ve found a new appreciation for drama on this course. Criticism is difficult to do properly and Andy’s been brilliant.”

Mark Charlton, Head of Public Engagement at DMU and a former night editor on the Leicester Mercury, presented the Square Mile Community Reporter Award to Tim Ince.

2016 - Journalism awards

Community Reporter Award: Tim Ince (left) with Mark Charlton, Head of Public Engagement at DMU

Tim got involved with Square Mile as a way of finding out stories and discovered a love of community projects. He said: “I’ve been doing mentoring work, been to India with Square Mile India and working on canal clean up.”

He added: “I’ve had some unbelievable opportunities – the Square Mile have good stuff going on all the time. Working with the Square Mile I was able to give a voice to people who might not get written about.”

2016 - Journalism awards

Sports Reporter Award: Ben Clarke (right) and Gary Sherrard, Head of Communications at Leicester Tigers

Ben Clarke was presented with a certificate and a signed rugby ball by Leicester Tigers Head of Communications, Gary Sherrard, after winning best sports reporter.

Ben has been working in the Tigers media team, interviewing players, working with the national press and writing match reports.

He said: “It’s been an great opportunity for us, we got to do so much and it gave us a real knowledge of what goes on in a press office where you’re dealing with national and international press every week. It’s great for the CV.”

Amina Osman won the BBC broadcast reporter prize, presented by BBC Radio Leicester’s Pete Wardman.

2016 - Journalism awards

Best Picture Memories: from left are DSU VP Adam Redfern, Paige Caldeira, Cherelle Cawthorne and DMU media press officer Sian Brewis

Former Journalism graduate Adam Redfern, who is now DSU Vice-President Media and Communications and Sian Brewis of DMU media office presented Paige Caldeira and Cherelle Cawthorne with prizes after they won a #DMUmemories photo competition.

DMU’s Leicester Centre for Journalism has set up Facebook and LinkedIn groups has been set up to let the students keep in touch and post up jobs and opportunities.

Surprising political views revealed at European debate event


‘A surprising number’ of students, staff and members of the public came together yesterday to share their opinions on the significance of the upcoming EU referendum, the implications of a potential Brexit and the future of European integration.

The Great British European Debate yesterday was organised by De Montfort University’s Jean Monnet Centre and the DMU Policy Commission.

The event was held as a part of the Festival of Ideas, which was set up to engage students, members of staff and the general public and to act as a showcase for work completed across the whole university campus.

Head of the department of politics Alasdair Blair, who chaired the event said: “The fact that so many people from the local area attended is in my opinion, a sign of significance of the issues the country is currently facing.europe map

“I was also surprised to discover that the general trend was that the majority of people present were very much pro-European.”

The session was also attended by a range of DMU academics and important figures in the local area, including mayors of Leicester and the surrounding counties and allowed everyone present to air their frustrations and to gain further understanding on the upcoming referendum.

Mr Blair continued: “The event was highly successful in the sense that over 100 people, including students and members of the public attended and this was very rewarding for everyone involved in it’s organisation.”

The event was also a part of 100 ideas for Europe, which was set up last year by staff on the university’s Policy Commission and was created to set out 100 ideas to change Leicester and make a difference to both local and wider communities across the country.

If you have any questions regarding this event or would like any further information, please contact Alasdair Blair on 0116 257 7209 or send an email to