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NME publishes Reading Festival coverage powered by students

NME and the University of Reading this summer took 12 young writers, photographers and filmmakers from the university to Reading Festival to report alongside NME and this week’s issue features a special festival review supplement created by the students.

Creating cross-platform content for NME the students were coached through the process via a series of workshops on all that makes great music journalism in today’s media landscape, said the publishers.

Reporting live from backstage, the student-contributor network gave music fans the inside track on the action, interviewing this year’s performers, staff and fans. Working alongside the NME festival team to create content for NME.COM and the brand’s social channels - which include Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter – the students took on the roles of presenter, videographer, photographer and reporter.

Working out of NME’s HQ, a 16-page festival review supplement powered by the students is featured in this week’s issue of NME.

Karen Smalley, head of brand and campaigns at the University of Reading, says: “Giving our students the chance to work with NME gives them a unique opportunity to learn from the best and stand out from the crowd.

“The University has always attracted students who dare to be different, who don’t follow the crowd and are proud to stand up and stand out. This is what makes our students the perfect fit for Reading Festival and this ground-breaking partnership with NME.”

Mike Williams, NME editor-in-chief, adds: “NME’s power of discovery is a key pillar of the brand, and by mobilising our millennial audience in this special partnership to create content for their peers, we are demonstrating our commitment to nurturing talent, supporting grassroots development and telling the stories our audience want to watch, read and share."

Coaching and training the students throughout the process, said the publishers, the initiative offered the young talent the chance to enhance their writing, photography, design and video skills. A series of sessions hosted by the NME editorial team briefed the students on what great writing looks like, how to flatplan a magazine and generate ideas, create killer online content and capture the best video.

The partnership follows NME’s recent announcement that it will be opening its doors to millennials to curate its #LifeHacks event in October, which will feature life guidance, careers advice and live music for young people looking to break into a creative industry.