Aug 2012 – present
Communications Officer at Abertay University
- My most recent stories include this one about the miniature beating human hearts that are being grown in a lab at Abertay; this one about the revelation that being bilingual does not, in fact, make you smarter; and this one about OAPs improving their health using high intensity training.
- Other stories include this one about our soil scientists, who have been using 3D printing technology to find out what is going on in the hidden world beneath our feet. I gave this story to the BBC, but it also appeared on STV, in The Scotsman, The Courier, and across the science and technology press.
- I also wrote this story about our forensic scientists who have developed a technique to recover fingerprints from foods. It appeared in The Independent, The Huffington Post, and on BBC Online among others.
- I also gained mass coverage with this story about Nurse Maule’s suitcase. It appeared in the Daily Mail, The Guardian, on Reporting Scotland and BBC Online, and even made it across the pond to appear in the US edition of The Huffington Post.
Nov 2010 – Aug 2012
Freelance Journalist and PR Officer
- Highlights included working to raise the profile of Scottish Rowing during, and after, the London Olympics; raising awareness of adaptive rowing – the event for people with a disability; and promoting the Scottish Rowing Awards.
- I also worked with the optician Ian Jordan to promote the treatment he has developed for face-blindness – a condition where people have an impaired ability to recognise faces. I gained coverage on Reporting Scotland, STV News and Good Morning Scotland, as well as online and across national and local print.
- My story about a book signed by John Logie Baird which raised £1440 at auction for Oxfam gained coverage across the UK, notably on Channel 4 News, STV News and on Radio 4.
- The meeting I set up between Oxfam and Blipfoto led to a collaboration between the two organisations for the launch of GROW, Oxfam’s biggest ever campaign. Members of the Blipfoto community were asked to hold a “blip-nic” in support of the campaign, which is about the ‘broken’ food system, and the results of their endeavours were made into this beautiful online collage.
- Other clients included The North Glasgow Community Food Initiative, Castle Semple Rowing Club, and I worked on a variety of projects at Carlos Alba Media.
Nov 2007 – Nov 2010
Media Assistant at Oxfam Scotland
- I used the media to promote all aspects of Oxfam’s work, coming up with innovative ways to publicise campaigns, events and emergency appeals.
- For example, I came up with a media stunt to promote the Robin Hood Tax campaign. My idea involved one of Oxfam’s campaigners dressing up as Robin Hood, riding down Buchanan Street in Glasgow on a horse, flanked by Friar Tuck and Maid Marion who distributed gold chocolate coins to passers by. The coins were branded with the Robin Hood Tax logo and website, and the merry men and women who were handing them out used the opportunity to talk to members of the public about the campaign.
- The stunt gained coverage in The Sun, The Herald, The Press & Journal, The Metro and The Courier & Advertiser, both in print and online. We also publicised the event and shared the coverage we achieved on our social networks.
Jun – Sep 2008
Research Assistant at The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
- I was a member of the team working on the WHO Growth Charts Project that was commissioned by The Department of Health to create the new growth charts that all parents, health visitors, midwives etc. now use to monitor the growth of their children from birth to age four.
- The research has been written up in a paper entitled “Designing the new UK-WHO growth charts: implications for health staff use and understanding of growth charts and growth monitoring”. It has been published in the journal Maternal and Child Nutrition, and I am one of the co-authors.
- Further information about the project can be found by clicking here.
May 2006 – Nov 2007
Campaigns Assistant at Oxfam Scotland
- I planned events, contacted activists, campaigned at festivals and was project manager for Oxfam’s participation in the Big Tent Festival 2007. In addition, I helped organise the special screening of Black Gold that Oxfam held for supporters, political journalists and politicians at the Filmhouse in Edinburgh.
- I was also involved in co-ordinating the Trade Justice Movement’s Global Day of Action at the German Consulate in Edinburgh, in preparations for the launch of the Scottish Fairtrade Forum, and in the launch of GCAP Scotland.
Jan – Aug 2004
Peer Educator at Students Partnership Worldwide
- I worked as a Peer Educator on a Health Education Programme in rural South Africa for the charity Students Partnership Worldwide. I lived in a Xhosa village and worked in partnership with a local Xhosa girl called Lwandisa, who remains a good friend. Together we tried to raise awareness in her community about issues like HIV and AIDS, Gender and Sexuality, and Culture and Stereotypes.
- We conducted engaging and imaginative workshops in the primary school, organised an event with guest speakers to coincide with World Youth Day, and took part in community activities to try and build community spirit. You can see some pictures from my time there by clicking here and here.
Other media experience