Students are well known as forming a dedicated audience for TV soaps like 'Hollyoaks' and 'Neighbours' but now some at the University of Dundee have taken things a step further by making their own.
DUSA TV will host a movie-styled premiere of its new student drama 'Skint' on Tuesday 23rd February.
Those attending will see the first 10-minute episode of the student show based around a first-year student at the University of Dundee. The show is a tongue in cheek take on well known dramas like 'Hollyoaks' and 'The OC'. The show has been entirely made by student volunteers who have a passion for television.
"There is a group of us who are really keen on all aspects of putting something like this together - the writing, directing, acting and promotion," said Martin Gribbon, online marketing manager for Dundee University Students' Association. "This is giving students the chance to develop skills that are not widely available to them in most British universities. At a time when many graduates are struggling to find work even with top class degrees, the additional skills are vital on a CV to stand out."
Martin formed DUSA TV late last year with student Jordan Dunbar, a budding writer and actor. Interest in the project has grown so quickly that DUSA TV already has an Executive board of fifteen and a list of volunteers nearly eighty people long.
"The interest in this has been fantastic and it is great to know that we have so much support," said Jordan. "We only got things rolling four months ago and already we have had over 13,000 views on Youtube and from people all over the UK. There is obviously a fun element to what we are doing and the soap opera is an example of that, but we are also doing a lot of other stuff. One of the station's aims is to update people's view about the city and university life in Dundee, reflecting the changes and accolades it has gained over the last few years. We are also using the channel to get over some key messages - we have just filmed the University Principal Professor Pete Downes as part of a film we are putting together on carbon management and sustainability."
DUSA TV has been treated as a professional operation with volunteers being given official titles and job descriptions they need to fulfil. Areas like Marketing, Advertising, Production and even software capabilities are covered, giving each member the chance to multi-task and gain experience over many levels.
The launch of the new drama 'Skint', a first in Scotland, sees the culmination of months of hard work in a project designed to deal with the issues of everyday student life in a 'tongue in cheek' manner. It shows that the best way to get a message across to students; be it drug awareness or health issues, is to use students to tell it.
With the recent election of a bonafide Hollywood star, Brian Cox, as the University's Rector, DUSA TV now has a vastly experienced and prominent partner. "That is obviously a huge boost for us, to have someone like Brian so closely involved with the student body at Dundee," said Jordan. "Now we just have to see about getting him starring in 'Skint'!"
The premiere of 'Skint' takes place at The Union, University of Dundee, at 8pm on Tuesday 23rd February.
Open the original version of this page.