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Issue 478, 4 March 2002

School film gets down to earth

A film about studying at the University, made by youngsters at a Leeds inner city school, is to be sent to schools across the country and to colleges in America. "We are so impressed by the quality of the film, we are going to use it to promote our courses," said head of earth sciences Professor Bruce Yardley.

The eight-minute film made by pupils at John Smeaton Community High School in Seacroft will be used to help the school of earth sciences recruit more students. "It makes sense to have a promotional video made by the target audience – sixth formers – rather than imposing our idea of what prospective students want or need to know," explained Professor Yardley.

The video project has already encouraged seven of the twelve students involved to continue their own education: four are now studying at degree level and three more have applied to university.

Head of media studies at John Smeaton school, Andrew Hirschhorn: "Until we began the project, the students weren't considering higher education. Making the film fired them with enthusiasm for a career in the media, and made them realise that higher education – the best route into the industry – was also an option for them."

The film-makers got a real taste of student life, becoming regular visitors on campus with carte blanche to film in practical classes and arrange interviews with students and staff.

Produced on video or CD, the film Rock Solid will be made available to any school in the UK for students interested in earth sciences, or just wanting to get a glimpse of student life in Leeds.

See the press release.

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