University Foundation Programme – UFP

Investigative journalist gives UFP students insight into the media industry

Laura Lancaster - Jun 1, 2016

Media students at UFP London welcomed journalist Hasham Cheema to their class last week. Hasham has worked with Al Jazeera and ITV, and he was able to share not only his knowledge of investigative journalism but also his personal experiences as an International Student in the UK.

Born in Pakistan, Hasham wanted to pursue his studies in the UK and decided to join the University of Arts of London. He would soon realise being a speaker of Urdu could be extremely valuable in the media industry in the UK.

“Moving to England to study journalism was a good idea because I got to understand journalism not only from an academic perspective but I also got a good view of the inner workings of the industry”

During the class he presented his work as an undercover reporter and our students found this very inspiring and motivating.

“Last Thursday we had a special guest called Hasham Cheema. Before he visited the UFP, we did not have a lot of opportunities to listen to real experiences in the media industry. Hasham told many stories about what he has done in the past and what kind of method he used for his documentaries. He also reminded me of the importance of planning. He is a foreigner in the UK like us, therefore, a bond of sympathy developed between him and us” (San, South Korea).

“The special guest Hasham was very friendly and natural. It seemed like he knew us. I learned many things related to documentaries, but also, more personal ones that I enjoyed very much. It was also easy to understand his experiences” (Bia, Angola)

“I enjoyed listening to Hasham. It was interesting to know how he got into the industry and hear the practical side of making documentaries, like equipment and filming difficulties, legal issues, such as what you can and cannot show on TV” (Mariia, Ukraine)

“I found the session extremely helpful and interesting, especially since I want to create documentaries in the future. Mr Hasham seemed very interested in his work and was able to explain it in detail to us. He was excited to hear about us and answer any questions about his work. Personally, I believe he was very brave for what he did in his documentary and it deserves a lot more attention. I would love to see more documentaries of this type and to hear more about him and his work. I’m really looking forward to our other special guest speakers” (Parmida, Iran)

“Hasham managed to immerse us in the topic of undercover journalism and how it manages to challenge ideologies that people have. He was very interactive with the class by speaking to us about important factors he faced doing his job. The highlight of the class was when he shared his knowledge and experience on how to deal with difficulties in our future media careers, based on each other’s countries. He was friendly and answered all our questions personally which made us interested in his film”. (Alia, Egypt).

“Mr Hasham, an undercover reporter visited us as a special guest and gave us a workshop on his job. He talked about his job and what he does. I learned that it is a very exciting job with a lot of risks. To receive permission to film someone without them knowing, we need strong evidence about them. Don’t expect it to be quick and easy, it takes a lot of time and it is very hard to get a lot of information, as we cannot ask directly but we have to direct them to say things. You, as an undercover reporter, have to be prepared with equipment, questions and situations. It was a great experience”. (Akshay, Tanzania).


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The University Foundation Programme (UFP) is a department of David Game College. Established in 1974, David Game College has become one of the leading Independent Sixth Form Colleges in London for 13-22 year olds.

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