There were 120 participants who submitted projects, not including those from ITMO’s student media group, Megabyte. Many participants, remembering the first ScienceMedia, came to re-live the experience of meeting other professionals in the field of science journalism. By the second half of the final day of the forum, participants had visited nearly all the events of the program, all that was left was to present their work effectively.

“Everyone participating in the forum got in through a competitive selection process. They submitted their materials which were evaluated by a competent jury. The students shared about the development of their media centres and analyzed their strengths and weaknesses. Working for student media is not the same as working for the university’s press service or another department of the type. While the latter are paid for their work, students work purely on enthusiasm.” shared Alexey Itin, head of the Student Media Department at ITMO University, and one of the organizers of the event.

During the forum there were workshops held by professional science journalists and experts with experience in developing an editorial office, who explained about their work and achievements. The jury also reviewed the submissions of the participants and pointed out their strengths and weaknesses. It’s important to note that although the participants of the forum work in student media, they are neither student journalists nor professional journalists.

“The university’s media needs to have an overall objective and we offer one of the solutions which is to make science and education more popular. Students who come to study at a university must understand that here they have thousands of opportunities for development.  One of these is creating a student editorial where the prime motivation is to create something interesting. We got some participants from the “Olimp” laboratory. One of the specialities of this lab is that mentors are not only teachers with experience but also students too. The organizers of the lab explained that a lot of money is not always necessary in order to create something. If there is a desire, you can make your own company the way Steve Jobs created Apple in his garage.” - explained Alexey Itin.  

Based on the type of publication, that is, print media, radio, TV or digital media, students were divided into different groups where they presented their projects at various locations at the forum. They explained how their editorial works and explained key initiatives for their media.

Amongst those in the field of radio were representatives of several universities who discussed the issues like those of live recordings, editing and developing ideas for radio broadcasts and special projects. There was also a team from Novosibirsk State University. The editor-in-chief of “Cactus” radio, which has been running already for five years, explained where their radio station is, who works in it and gave examples of their programs.  For instance, one of their latest projects was a special campus tour guide which helped freshmen find their way around the university.

ITMO University’s “Megabyte” also showed their “converged” media, which is when an article is supplemented by photos, videos or audio to create a stronger story. “Megabyte” reporters talked about radio marathons which they started running in Autumn 2016. Live broadcasts take place non-stop for 24 hours. Famous people from St. Petersburg are usually invited to participate in the marathon.

The electronic media group included a team from Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas who presented their online magazine “kerosin”. They shared about some of the complexities of layout and design. A special project devoted to cinema, MIRUMAXIMUM, was also presented in this group. The team carrying out this project is made up of students from a number of different universities, united by their love for cinema. They plan to create a special YouTube channel since according to the students, there are no decent movie reviews available online. The students want to take on the style of Western reviews, where bloggers analyse films from the perspective of sociology, political science, philosophy, use mathematical approaches and so on.

The TV projects group included a team from Pskov State University who talked about their student TV Center “TV PskovSU”. Here, they film programs, reports, news and other materials.

The “print media” group had several teams presenting. A student from Don State Technical University in Rostov-on-Don talked about how a student editorial office works from his experience in the student journal “Plus Odin” (Plus One -- Ed.). Much attention is given to design, so in each issue there are infographics, devoted to one or another side of the University. There are also interactive “features” which are like board games. For example, the game “DSTU-land” is run by students from the moment they receive their student card to receiving their diploma. They even showed video content with the help of which they maintain interest in the publication.

At the time that the participants presented their work, the winners had already been decided. According to the organizers, a separate competition was arranged for those that really stood out during the three days of the media forum. These students also received prizes.