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A passion for broadcast media technologies in Journalism

Colleague spotlight | Chian Gatewood

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Chian in the media suite

Chian Gatewood is a lecturer in media at Leeds Business School. She is also the TV and Radio Studio Manager, and a freelance videographer who has an interest in broadcast media, innovation and technology.  

Tell us a bit about you and what led to working with Leeds Business School

I was invited to deliver a lecture to a group of students about my retail career and to share my experiences of working for large international fashion businesses and running my own small vintage fashion business. I set the students a fashion retail sustainability project and they came back with innovative ideas for the sector. This is what made me want to work here at Leeds Beckett University. What I discovered on that day was that every student is unique and has a different viewpoint. It is the diversity of the student community that makes higher education such a vibrant and enjoyable sector to work in. I absolutely love engaging with the students to explore the issues of today and to support them in pursuing their own business passions. I am naturally an outgoing person and I love bringing together my 3 favourite things; my network of industry contacts, my research, and my teaching, all of which come together in delivering a great student experience.

What makes you passionate about your work around broadcast media / technology and why is it important? 

I’m passionate about innovation and technology, and allowing students to push those boundaries into broadcast industries. I want students to go away with endless skills, not just specific to their course. 

I currently teach on PR and journalism courses. The PR modules tend to be predominantly theory based, but I have started to offer practical workshops, such as podcasting and media training, which give them those added skills to go out and use. I teach students how to cope in a busy broadcast studio, using state-of-the-art equipment, mobile shooting, video editing, podcast production and sound design. These skills give them the flexibility to do a wide range of jobs. I also think it’s important to appreciate technology as it can apply in most fields. 

How is collaboration integral to your work, and what are one or two collaborations that have been most meaningful to you?

Collaboration is the key because it brings that added element of teamwork and brings different elements of expertise together, which adds to the student experience. The broadcast industry is competitive and the rapid changes in technology mean I’m constantly upskilling and learning, and most importantly, networking. Everyone has a specialism and when you combine those specialisms you achieve endless results.

Before the pandemic, me and my subject group worked with St Mary’s College for a student activity day, which gave them a day in the life of a TV journalist. This involved creating a live news bulletin. The energy and enthusiasm from the students and tutor were amazing, so much so they want to make it a regular occurrence. This was a great collaboration because it gave young adults a glimpse at where they could be, where they could go and what the university has to offer.

I’m also currently working with another senior lecturer on creating a new online TV channel called Beckett Now, for our BA Journalism students. This is a great opportunity for students to run their own TV channel and make content they’re interested in that’s not specific to the curriculum. This is how we get students to use their skills outside of the classroom and become the best at their craft.

I’m also a co-academic lead on an exciting research project which looks at coaching and networking in small- and medium-sized enterprises, and I’m currently in the pre-production stages of making a TV documentary to support this. So, as you can see, collaboration creates ideas, ideas create results. 

What achievements in this area have you been most proud of while working in Leeds Business School?

I won a Golden Robe award a few years ago for being an unsung hero and that is still a memorable achievement for me. The marble green, huge trophy isn’t the only thing to smile about, but it’s that feeling of appreciation and knowing I must be doing something correct. I’m also the module leader for a module called ‘Intro to broadcast media’, which I developed from scratch, and the feedback from the MA students is outstanding. The module is 80% practical, and involves lectures from industry-standard practitioners, so it’s a valuable learning experience. 

Golden robe award

Chian's Golden Robe award

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In Clearing
BA (Hons)

Journalism

Woman looking through camera in media facility

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