Millie Smith – Founder & Editor In Chief
It feels surreal to be writing my first editorial for The Collective Magazine. Something which started as an idea in lockdown, has quickly evolved and expanded to the online magazine you’re reading now. Whilst 2020 may not have been the year all of us had planned, I do not believe I would’ve started something such as The Collective Magazine in different circumstances, which I’ll be forever grateful for.
2020 has been wildly unpredictable and has challenged each of us in wildly different ways. In June, I found myself having completed my first-year exams from my bedroom, with nothing to do or focus on until I, hopefully, returned to university in September. I was searching for something to keep my brain busy, looking for work experience or remote internships online, like so many young people during this pandemic. I desperately wanted to indulge myself in journalism, I wanted practice and experience, and when I struggled to find a single opportunity for students like myself to grow and expand their portfolio of practice, I knew I wanted to do something to change that. The idea to build my own online magazine for students started here, I mind mapped thoughts and ideas, things I wanted to achieve. It wasn’t long after that that I realised I needed to find a starting point, I decided to reach out to people on social media to see if anyone was interested in working with me to make this vision a reality (I expected no responses and that maybe a few people would laugh). To my surprise, dozens of people reached out saying how they loved the idea, how they wanted to be involved and through all of this I managed to find our deputy editor, Rhianna!
Things grew quickly. We then had a name, a logo, section ideas, social media ideas, we knew what we wanted the website to look like and how, in an ideal world, we wanted the mag to be run. It became clear very quickly that this was not something we could do alone, we needed help and assistance and, therefore, we set up an application process for volunteers. Looking for editors, illustrators, web design experts, social media team members and more, we were astonished to have received 60+ applications. We realised that this was something people backed, so many people wanted to help develop a journalistic space for students. From here, we very quickly had an amazing team of students and graduates, a website, a social media presence and articles being written.
At the start of lockdown, I never could have imagined that I would’ve created a platform like the Collective Magazine, with the help of other amazing. I am consistently amazed by the people, the writing and the passion people have for this project. We have big ideas for moving forward with The Collective Magazine, so whilst I am immensely proud of how it is started, I am beyond excited to see it grow.
Journalism is a difficult industry to break into, and rightfully so in some respects. However, The Collective Magazine aims to give young people an opportunity to practice, be published and gain experience in a journalistic environment – even if it is virtual. We aim to be an inclusive and diverse platform for students and young people to get involved with, and we hope that others share our passion for this project!
As I said, as a team we are so proud of how far The Collective Magazine has come already, but we also cannot wait to expand and grow. Our sections are covering all kinds of topics and if you have any articles you’d love to write, please get in touch with them! Here on the editorial page you’ll be hearing from myself & Rhianna every month, and maybe the occasional special guest.
Thank you for your support so far and keep watching this space.