Lecturers. Instead of wrongly looking at them as cold superiors trying to run away as soon as they hit the last slide, try putting yourself in their shoes. I’ll help you with that, as I sat down for a chat with my favourite journalism lecturer, Christine Challand, to get to know her better.
From someone as experienced and valued in the industry as her, you’d expect nothing but seriousness and formality, right? She works for the Sun and the Daily Mail while teaching at uni. Yet Christine’s honesty, humbleness and banter blew me away shocked since I first sat down for her lecture.
It’s hard to explain; there’s hardly a more grounded and positive person around and you can clearly see that in her teaching. I believe every lecturer from the University of Worcester has a specific aura that sets them apart and hers is definitely optimism.
She backed this up saying: ”I’m an eternal optimist. I’ll always look at the glass half full. Life is too short anyway.”
And she is. Her positive humour radiates right through. Knowing I could always count on it, I asked what advice does she have for freshers. ”Just drink a lot of water and don’t skip lectures. Also, if you realise, like many do in their second year, that you should’ve worked harder in your first year don’t get all scratchy and spiky. Just work twice as hard.”
She then got a little serious and stressed how important being hardworking is. ”Make the most out of these fantastic opportunities because before you know it you’re out of the revolving door, spat out on the city streets,” she said in a lower voice.
Another thing I like about Christine is how she can turn a seemingly boring lecture like Reporting Politics into an exciting one. She brings in prominent local politicians for interviews and somehow manages to turn the session into a fun chat instead of awkward questioning. Just last week, we had Worcester City Council leader, Adrian Greggson in. Amazing.
Because she constantly wears a smile on her face I asked what her biggest flaw is, curious to see whether she will frown for a moment. After bursting in laughter she explained: ” Ooooh, I procrastinate. Just like my students do. I will leave something until the last minute but will still meet my deadlines.”
She ends the questioning naming things she loves most in life. ‘‘Students. I just love the optimism. I also love walking my Labrador and spending holidays skiing with my son Tom… who spends quite a lot of time drinking with this gentleman,’‘ she giggles, pointing at one of my classmates.