Shortlisted Barking and Dagenham College students in the running for takeover

Takeover students from the Barking and Dagenham College receiving their awards from Archant staff.

Takeover students from the Barking and Dagenham College receiving their awards from Archant staff. - Credit: Archant

Our student takeover competition is hotting up and we’ve whittled down our journalism hopefuls to take just 23 candidates forward to the next stage.

Each of the Barking and Dagenham College students will be keeping their fingers firmly crossed ahead of giving a presentation explaining why they should win the opportunity of a lifetime to our judging panel next week.

The lucky winners will produce an edition of the Post before competing to secure paid internships with our editorial and commercial teams.

For creative media student Matthew Smith, securing a place on the team would mean a huge deal.

The budding filmmaker from Dagenham says he’d love to have a chance to shadow our photographers.

“I want to get an insight into the newspaper industry,” Matthew, 17, explained.

“I like taking pictures and it would be great to maybe have some published as well.”

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And getting shortlisted has already boosted his confidence.

“It’s a good feeling because I have entered competitions in the past but I’ve never been shortlisted for anything like this,” Matthew added.

Avid celebrity magazine reader Mariama Bah, 18, hopes that she could soon be seeing her own words in print.

The IT student, who lives in Barking, said: “I want to try out journalism because writing stories is something that I would like to do in the future.”

Fashion blogger Decota Hyland already has 300 people following her every post.

But instead of writing for the likes of Vogue or Elle, the 18-year-old wants to be covering breaking news – just like we do at the Post.

“I thought the takeover would be a good opportunity for me,” Decota, who lives in Silvertown, said.

“I couldn’t believe when I found out that I’d been shortlisted because I only put in my entry at the last minute – so I was so excited.”

IT student Julius Razanauskas, from Upton Park, said the opportunity to take part in the takeover was just too good to pass up.

“I like a challenge and I thought it would be good experience for me and my CV,” the 18-year-old said.

“I want to give it a try and see how it is as it’s something new for me.”

The student winners will receive mentoring before producing a special edition of the paper.